Weapon of choice: a neoliberal institutional perspective on Italy’s decision to procure a sixth generation fighter aircraft

Lorenzo Cladi*, Andrea Locatelli

*Corresponding author

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In 2018, Italy decided to join the British-led Team Tempest to develop a sixth generation fighter aircraft. This decision came at the expense of a rival project, the Future Combat Air System (FCAS), led by France and Germany. The Italian decision to join Tempest raises a theoretical question overlooked by the existing literature: when states have different cooperative procurement options, what makes them choose one rather than another? The aim of the article is to provide an analytically informed account of the process that led Italy to join Tempest. In doing so, we adopt a neo-institutionalist perspective, as it allows us to identify the actors and motivations that made this outcome possible. We argue that due to the peculiar Italian bureaucratic-institutional setting, no domestic actor was solely responsible for the final decision. The final decision to join Tempest was the result of a coalition between the Armed Forces and defence firms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalContemporary Italian Politics
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Keywords

  • Tempest
  • neo-institutionalism
  • Italy
  • FCAS

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