Playing for Constitutional Time: Interim Constitutions & Transitional Provisions

Ginsburg, Tom, and Eric Alston. "Playing for constitutional time: Interim constitutions and transitional provisions." The Timing of Lawmaking (2017): 110

Posted: 17 Jun 2019

See all articles by Eric Alston

Eric Alston

Finance Division, University of Colorado Boulder

Tom Ginsburg

University of Chicago Law School

Date Written: March 31, 2017

Abstract

Because constitutions do not last forever, polities face the problem of transitions. In recent years, national constitution-making processes have tended to employ two mechanisms to effectuate the transition between the former regime and incoming one: (i) interim constitutions; and (ii) transitional provisions. In this chapter, we provide a descriptive and conceptual account of interim constitutions and transitional provisions in national constitutions. In our view interim constitutions should ideally outline the process by which a new constitution shall be drafted, be temporally delimited, and provide a framework that builds political trust among the different interest groups involved in the process. Transitional provisions, as part of the new constitution itself, should be temporary provisions that clearly outline the sequence and timing of the transition to the broad realization of the new constitutional order. Properly applied to short-term questions of legal transition and constitutional implementation, transition mechanisms can play a valuable role in constitutional processes.

Keywords: Interim Constitutions, Transition Provisions, Constitutional Transitions, Constitutional Design, Comparative Constitutional Law, Legal Timing

JEL Classification: K39, K49

Suggested Citation

Alston, Eric and Ginsburg, Tom, Playing for Constitutional Time: Interim Constitutions & Transitional Provisions (March 31, 2017). Ginsburg, Tom, and Eric Alston. "Playing for constitutional time: Interim constitutions and transitional provisions." The Timing of Lawmaking (2017): 110, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3399766

Eric Alston (Contact Author)

Finance Division, University of Colorado Boulder ( email )

Campus Box 419
Boulder, CO 80309
United States

Tom Ginsburg

University of Chicago Law School ( email )

1111 E. 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

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