Fabio Longo

Parliament and Parliament Standing Committees in the Works of Leopoldo Elia

  • Abstract

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Over the course of this research career, Leopoldo Elia has focused several time on the relationship between parliamentary assemblies and parliamentary standing committees. He was interested in understanding the role of committees not only in procedural perspective but also in political perspective. Therefore he considered besides the parliamentary praxis, also the fragmentation of political system, role and skill of representatives, potential presence and activity of lobbies. Elia seems to agree with the following thesis: the strength of present legislative assemblies depends on the strength of parliamentary committees. The text provides a review of the works of Leopoldo Elia concerning this issue and deals with the following themes: Elia's research interest in parliamentary procedure; role and autonomy of permanent committees in constitutional Italian context; parties in the committee's work; the growing oversight role of the standing committees; committees in comparative perspective. Leopoldo Elia considered Italian standing committees in comparative perspective: through the study of US Congress, United Kingdom and French Parliament he came to the conclusion that the 'strength' of parliamentary committees mainly on the fragmentation of political system and party discipline.

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