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Carlo Cattaneo is regarded by many as one of the most versatile and multi-faceted intellectuals of the Italian Risorgimento. A great thinker, patriot and political scientist, his writings cover a large variety of subjects, including economics, history, sciences, literature, and philosophy. However, Cattaneo is particularly renowned for his federal ideas and for his project to create a federation for Italy within a larger European federation. A convinced advocate of local self-government and direct democracy, Cattaneo had always been contrary to the Italian unification process as realized in 1861. Considering that his ideas remain very pertinent even these days, this presentation aims at identifying the key points of Cattaneo’s federalism, as well as the reasons that led to the failure of his project for a federal Italy.
Erika Arban received her law degree from the University of Trieste in 1998 and her LL.M from the University of Arizona in Tucson in 2005. She is currently a PhD Candidate at the Faculty of Law of the University of Ottawa, where she works in the area of constitutional law and comparative federalism under the supervision of Prof. Peter Oliver. She has published in legal reviews in Italy and the United States, and has been a speaker at various conferences. Before starting her PhD, Erika worked as a legal consultant with an international law firm in Los Angeles. She is also a member of the New York State Bar and the American Bar Association.