Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

Enacting Constitutionalism

For readers who might be interested in a paper on the constitutional enactment of independent judicial institutions, may I suggest a paper just published entitled “Enacting Constitutionalism,” in which my coauthor and I focus on the political composition of the constituent body and its implications for the type of institutions enacted. The paper is available here.

Here is the abstract:

When and why can we expect constitution-making processes to produce an institutional framework that formally serves constitutionalism? We present a simple and general typology of constituent processes that captures their legal/political character and their dynamic nature. We distinguish constitution-making processes controlled by one cohesive and organized political group (unilateral) from processes controlled by at least two different political groups (multilateral). Our central hypothesis is that multilateral constitution-making tend to establish institutional frameworks consistent with constitutionalism. Focusing on independent judicial institutions, we find support for our hypothesis in a sample of 18 Latin American countries from 1945 to 2005.


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