We’re living in times of deep and fast changes that are silently importing into the everyday lives of people new and heavy difficulties. The ideology of no limits and the underlined compulsion to capture all the opportunities, produce a breathless every-day-life, far away from the real ability of many families who (also before the recent financial crisis) are dealing with the difficulty to get the account square. These difficulties produce weakness and illness (particularly depression) especially for a particular social group that could be defined as "impoverished middle class" or "new vulnerable". The area of the new vulnerable not only is shifting into poverty, but also, in relationship with the concept of citizenship, shows a growing hostility towards all that is "established" (State, local authorities, third sector and trade unions). Established institutions are, in fact, simply not representatives and this could means be more sensible to those political languages that try to simplify the reality. The participatory process set up in the last years around the complexity of the social issues, health, environment and urban planning, could be read as valid opportunity to engage, activate and maintain these resources. But this is possible only using appropriate methodological tools able to reinforce the contemporary forms of democracy (now so far to be strong and participate). This requires the spreading of new capabilities among operators and managers of the public and no-for-profit sector. But also an effort for the University that may fill the delete of skills in this field.
Keywords: Vulnerabilità, politiche partecipative, welfare, sviluppo di comunità