What if: Small Italian Diaspora

c. 140 million
Italy: 55,551,000[1]
Italian diaspora and ancestry: c. 85 million

OTL there is more people that claim Italian descent outside Italy than inside it, as a consequence of considerable emigration. What if Italy experienced little emigration, such that less than 20 million identified as Italian diaspora. What changed would be needed to lower Italian emigration? How would Italy be shaped by less emigration, and probably a greater population?
 
Wikipedia says:

Mezzadria, a form of sharefarming where tenant families obtained a plot to work on from an owner and kept a reasonable share of the profits, was more prevalent in central Italy, which is one of the reasons that there was less emigration from that part of Italy. The south lacked entrepreneurs, and absentee landlords were common. Although owning land was the basic yardstick of wealth, farming there was socially despised. People invested not in agricultural equipment, but in such things as low-risk state bonds.[5]
So if Mezzadria was more widespread in Veneto and southern Italy, it looks like emigration could have been severely reduced. That's a more simple POD. Changing the attitude of southern Italians to be more positive towards farming outside of owning land is more difficult but surely could be done.

An Italy with less emigration, more Mezzadria and more investment in southern agriculture would be wealthier than IOTL. Preventing a culture of emigration from forming also should prevent brain drain in Italy. Southern Italy has huge potential for dryland farming such as that done in Mexico, Grenada in Spain and New Mexico. This should allow an agricultural surplus which will allow the Italian population to thrive. Also bear in mind rich countries can import food as the UK did across the 19th century it's not a huge deal.

Italy with a larger population and better agriculture will also have a larger industrial base. Italy has it's limits due to it's lack of coal and iron, but there is both of those in the Balkans. Imports make Italy vulnerable during the war, but I do think northern Italy could see much more intensive and extensive industrialisation between 1800 and 1945 if they import steel and coal where necessary. Likely ITTL instead of moving to New York circa 1900, Milan will be the leading destination for Sicilians in this period.

I think by 1914 a stronger Italy is guaranteed, but colonialism is an interesting point. Being more powerful, Italy definitely has the potential to gain Tunisia as a colony. Aside from that, Libya, Somalia and Eritrea would all see larger numbers of Italians moving there by the 1920s.

Anyway by 2020 I could easily see Italy having around 105 million. Of those, 16% would be born abroad, and around 22% would be non ethnic Italians, largely Eastern Europeans. The remaining 81 million would be ethnic Italians. Milan would be a mega-city of 15 million people, making it Europe's largest city and a cultural and economic juggernaut. Lombardy itself would be home to 20 million people, and at a population density of around 850 people per km2, it would be one of the most densely populated, wealthiest and most sustainable regions of the planet.

I mean alright that's basically an Italy wank but it's definitely plausible.
 
Avoid the commercial war between France and Italy in the last two decades of the 18th century under Crispi, it really do some pretty nasty numbers to the italian economy

Preventing the OTL Italian unification, who destroyed the South Italy would be a good start...
:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes: I always forget how the south was the land of honey and milk till the big bad savoyards come
 
Why do you say that?
Avoid the commercial war between France and Italy in the last two decades of the 18th century under Crispi, it really do some pretty nasty numbers to the italian economy



:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes: I always forget how the south was the land of honey and milk till the big bad savoyards come
Emigration from the South Italy started only after the unification and was the majority of it...
And whatever was the South BEFORE Garibaldi and unification AFTER it was without doubt destroyed....
 
Emigration from the South Italy started only after the unification and was the majority of it...
And whatever was the South BEFORE Garibaldi and unification AFTER it was without doubt destroyed....
One factor was probably that Northern Italy had lower population growth than Southern Italy. France is famous for it's lack of population growth in the 19th century, while the population growth in Northern Italy was higher than France, it was not enough to keep up with Southern Italy. In addition to structural differences that made it more prone to emigration. Such as less economic development, and cities to move into. Ofcourse there is likely more to it.
 
One factor was probably that Northern Italy had lower population growth than Southern Italy. France is famous for it's lack of population growth in the 19th century, while the population growth in Northern Italy was higher than France, it was not enough to keep up with Southern Italy. In addition to structural differences that made it more prone to emigration. Such as less economic development, and cities to move into. Ofcourse there is likely more to it.
Oh sure, there was the commercial war with France thanks in great part of Crispi (a proto-Duce in his own right) and nobody can say that Savoyard management of the south economy has been good, all the contrary...and more damning the liberals in the north basically formed a pact with the big landowner in the south to keep things as they are, making modernization (both social and economic) an uphill battle resolved only almost a century later.
Said that, there is a subsect in Italy that believe the Kingdom of the Two Sicily at the eve of the Garibaldi 'Impresa dei Mille' was something else of a barely functioning state with tons of problem that ended with a wimp and not with a bang ; honestly it tell much of the state of the nation if corruption and promise had been enough to cause a massive popular revolt and botch any serious attempt to stop it
 
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