I am a researcher specialised in the comparative study of citizenship and migration policies.
I wrote my doctoral dissertation at the Department of Social and Political Sciences of the European University Institute in Florence under the supervision of Rainer Bauböck. I completed my research in April 2018: The politics of regional citizenship. Explaining variation in the right to health care for undocumented immigrants across Italian regions, Spanish autonomous communities, and Swiss cantons. In the thesis I show that distinct traditions of regional protection of vulnerable individuals—like minor children, the disabled, and the homeless—can be used to challenge and contest national governments’ ideas about citizenship and their policies
After moving to the University of Neuchatel at the end of 2017, I have continued to study the politics of inclusion and exclusion from citizenship rights in multilevel countries, with a specific focus on healthcare. In my first peer-reviewed article, I discuss the strategies that subnational governments use to pioneer, mitigate and resist the decisions of the central government, ultimately re-defining the meaning of citizenship for vulnerable subjects: 'The regional battleground: Partisanship as a key driver of the subnational contestation of Citizenship' (Ethnopolitics, March 2019). In my second peer-reviewed article I show how, by activating traditions of regional citizenship, subnational governments define distinctive preferences concerning migration, healthcare and welfare policies and Traditions of regional citizenship: Explaining subnational variation of the right to healthcare for undocumented immigrants (Regional Studies, December 2019).
At the same time, together with some colleagues, I have also studied the inclusion of foreign residents and other categories of mobile individuals into political rights, using a large-N legal trend analyses of electoral norms: the Conditions for Electoral Rights. We designed this database to facilitate the comparative analysis of the practice of voting, standing as candidate, and the regulation of mechanisms that enable different groups of individuals to participate in political processes within and across states. In a recent co-authored article written together with Samuel D. Schmid and Jean-Thomas Arrighi, we show that the contestation of the right to vote and to stand as candidate takes place towards multiple groups of voters, at multiple levels of government, and in multiple types of elections: 'Non-universal suffrage: measuring electoral inclusion in contemporary democracies' (European Political Science, March 2019).
Since March 2020, I have advanced my research on the inclusiveness of citizenship and migration policies by focusing on how different categories of migrants and mobile individuals are included into public responses to national emergencies, with a specific focus on the Covid-19 pandemic. The overarching research question is: Do economically developed countries differentiate between citizens and non-citizens when allocating public relief in times of emergency? As a result of this work, I have prepared two datasets that track restrictions of movement for different categories of citizens: https://tabsoft.co/2YqC5is and https://tabsoft.co/3fxs9d0.
In the course of my research, I have benefited from visiting fellowships at Fondazione ISMU, Milan, Italy (2017); Collegio Carlo Alberto and FIERI, Forum Internazionale ed Europeo di Ricerche sull'Immigrazione, Turin, Italy (2016-2017); University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland (2016); Department of Political Science of McGill University, Canada (2015); and Scottish Centre for Constitutional Change of the University of Edinburgh, Scotland (2014).
My analyses have been published on openDemocracy, LSE Europp blog, LSE British Politics and Policy blog, The Washington Post, and Unimondo. My research has appeared on The Democratic Audit, The Guardian and Radio France International.
I serve as a reviewer for three academic journals: Citizenship Studies, International Migration, and Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies.
© 2019 by LORENZO PICCOLI.