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This introductory chapter establishes the book’s focus on the content of the rules for a contemporary constitution. It adopts the normative perspective of a democratic society. It discusses units of observation and levels of analysis and sets out a trans-disciplinary approach. It identifies key elements in subsequent analysis including motivation, social diversity, fairness, rationality and the emotive, and chains of intermediation. It introduces the key challenges involved in upgrading contemporary constitutions.
Gary Jacobsohn and Miguel Schor
Alix Meyer and Eric Phélippeau
What are the constraints on the political communication of party organizations? And just how much are candidates and parties spending on communication and propaganda? This chapter is an attempt to begin answering these questions. It starts by noting the scarcity of reliable and detailed comparative data on this topic before reviewing the different modes of partisan propaganda and the factors that can explain how parties and candidates can be incentivized to use more modes than others depending on the context. We observe that the behavior of parties and candidates is indeed shaped by the structure of the political system, cultural norms or the dynamics of the party system wherein they operate. To a certain extent, they are also dependent on access to certain technology. Finally, what is the impact of statutory and regulatory constraints on political communication? How does campaign finance regulation more broadly influence the contours of the electoral competition? These are some of the questions that this chapter proposes to address in a final section and conclusion.
This chapter aims to provide initial answers to the basic question of whether and how participation in constitution-making delivers for women. The chapter proceeds by first outlining the contours of the debate surrounding popular participation in constitution-making, identifying the benefits and potential pitfalls such participation may yield. The chapter then looks at three instances of popular involvement in constitutional change: the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, the 2012-14 Irish Constitutional Convention and the 2011-14 Tunisian constitution-making experience, analysing the level and nature of women’s participation in all these processes. Subsequently, the chapter evaluates the successes and failures of participatory mechanisms such as referendums, constitutional conventions and public consultations in empowering women as equal participants, and their ability to ensure gender-sensitive deliberations. The chapter also raises questions as to whether participation is to be resorted to in all cases of constitutional reform and the propensity for it to be an obstacle to, rather than a vehicle for, gender equality.