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Illiberalism – Populism - Constitutionalism (LAW-DS-ILPOCO-22)


Department LAW
Course category LAW Intensive Seminar - 6 credits
Course type Seminar
Academic year 2022-2023
Credits 6 (EUI Law credits)
Contact Law Department administration,
  Course materials

28/11/2022 11:00-13:00 @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati

28/11/2022 14:00-17:00 @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati

29/11/2022 14:00-17:00 @ Sala degli Stemmi, Villa Salviati

01/12/2022 11:00-13:00 @ Sala del Torrino, Villa Salviati

01/12/2022 14:00-17:00 @ Sala del Torrino, Villa Salviati

02/12/2022 11:00-13:00 @ Sala degli Stemmi, Villa Salviati

02/12/2022 14:00-17:00 @ Sala degli Stemmi, Villa Salviati


The course deals with the decay of liberal democratic constitutionalism all over the world, concentrating on the European development, with particular emphasis on democratic and rule of law backsliding in the Eastern and Central European member states of the EU. The main aim is to discuss the relationship between illiberalism, populism and (liberal) constitutionalism amid the emergence of illiberal and populist constitutionalism in constitution-making and in constitutional adjudication. The course will discuss the theories of illiberalism, the different types of populism and constitutionalism, and engage with the question, whether there are such things as ‘authoritarian’, ‘illiberal’ or ‘populist’ constitutionalism. The course will also contrast populist with popular, participatory approaches to constitutional reform. Finally, we will discuss the issue of judicial populism by national and transnational courts.

The main objective of the course will be the comprehensive analysis of the possible threat of illiberalism and populism to constitutional democracy. While the main focus is on European societies, the populist tendencies in constitutionalism in the US and the UK will also be discussed. The course further deals with the question of how to strengthen liberal constitutionalism, with special regard to the EU context. What the EU can and should do to oversight non-compliance with European values, such as democracy and the rule of law in member states, and what tools it can use to enforce compliance.

Please note that this will be a highly interactive course. All participants should be familiar with the readings. The readings will be available in good time before the seminar.

  1. Definitions and theories of illiberalism and populism – 28 November 11:00 -13:00 – guest: Tomasz Koncewicz (University of Gdansk, Braudel fellow, EUI)
  2. Populist constitutionalism in Italy and Poland – 28 November 14:00 – 17:00 – guest: Giuseppe Martinico (Scuola Sant’Anna, Pisa) and Tomasz Koncewicz
  3. Illiberalism, populism and constitutionalism in Latin-America and Hungary – 29 November 14:00 – 17:00 – guest: Roberto Gargarella (University of Buenos Aires, Braudel fellow, EUI)
  4. Populist constitutionalism vs. anti-constitutional populism – 1 December 11:00 – 13:00 – guest: Paul Blokker (University of Bologna)
  5. Popular and judicial constitutionalism – 1 December 14:00 – 17:00
  6. Populism and International and EU Law – 2 December 11:00 – 13:00
  7. Research on illiberalism, populism and constitutionalism – 2 December 14:00 – 17:00

First, Second & Third Term: registration from 19 to 26 September.

Register for this course

Page last updated on 21 September 2018

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