Spring 2014
    Law No.: LAW9174
    Sched. No.: 114219093

Comparative Constitutional Design*
Section 1
Versteeg, Emiliana M.

Administrative Information:
During SIS enrollment, check on SIS for real-time enrollment numbers
Days, Times (Room):F, 1300-1500 (WB127)
Capacity:16 **This information is current as of 04/16/2014 06:14:35 AM**
Current Enrollment:7 **This information is current as of 04/16/2014 06:14:35 AM**
Syllabus: View Syllabus (requires LawWeb account)

Course Description:

In this seminar, we will explore the considerations and challenges in designing a constitution. The first part of this seminar draws on leading legal, economic and political theories to explore the origins of constitutions: why do countries adopt written constitutions? And what explains their constitutional choices? The second part of the seminar explores different substantive constitutional design topics, or the different ways in which constitutions deal with rights, checks and balances, and the protection of ethnic minorities. The last part of the seminar addresses potential implications of constitutional design choices. We draw on interdisciplinary research to explore an important puzzle in constitutional design: why do governments comply with their constitutional commitments? And to what extent can smart constitutional design aid compliance?

Every student has to select one foreign country and become an expert on this country’s constitution over the course of the semester. Throughout our discussions, students will have to apply various constitutional design theories to their country of expertise, and bring insights from this country into the discussion.

COURSE REQUIREMENT: A substantial research paper

This course is on the approved upper-level writing requirement course list.