Populism and Innovation: Twin Challenges for Europe?
Matteo Renzi, former Prime Minister of Italy
Matteo Renzi was born in Florence in January 1975. In 2004 he was elected president of the province of Florence; five years later, in 2009, he was elected Mayor of Florence. In 2012 he ran in the primary elections for the centre-left, losing in the run-off. In 2013 he stood once again in the primaries, this time for leader of the Italian Democratic Party (Partito Democratico, PD), winning with 67.5% of the vote.
On February 22, 2014, following the resignation of Enrico Letta and after a vote by a large majority within the PD, he became President of the Council of Ministers (Prime Minister of Italy), the youngest in the history of Italy. After the negative result of the constitutional referendum on December 4, 2016, Matteo Renzi resigned as Prime Minister.
In April 2017, almost two million voters took part in the primary elections for Secretary of the PD. Renzi was re-elected with 69% of the votes cast. Following the results of the Italian parliamentary election, in March 2018 he resigned as Leader of the PD.
Matteo Renzi is currently Senator for the Electoral College of Florence, Scandicci, Signa, Lastra a Signa and Impruneta. His activity as a politician has been accompanied by his writing, which includes the books Fuori! (2011), Stilnovo (2012), Oltre la rottamazione (2013), and Avanti! Perché l’Italia non si ferma (2017). He has also taught at Stanford's Florence campus in recent years.