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Constitution Building Processes

Political change requires that constitutional challenges are handled with skill and attentive expertise. Poorly resolved constitution building can multiply national problems, magnify the costs of transitions and increase factors contributing to more conflict. The key is consolidating democratic constitutional governance, benefiting all citizens.

Work Programme

Together with local, regional and global partners, the Constitution Building programme raises awareness of the role constitution-building processes play in managing conflict and consolidating democracy.

The work involves:

  • Providing technical assistance to national actors engaged in processes of constitution building;
  • Providing knowledge and capacity-building resources that individuals and groups can use to strengthen their participation, and its quality, in processes of constitution building;
  • Facilitating access to lesson learning in comparative contexts so that national, regional and international actors have more options to consider in dealing with different constitutional issues;
  • Servicing a global community of constitution building practitioners through physical and virtual spaces for dialogue.

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Constitutionnet
Supporting Constitution Builders Globally

www.constitutionnet.org

New releases

Related Video and Audio
Why do Constitutions Matter?
(2014-10-30)

Key Messages:

  • Constitutions are of indirect benefit: they can influence the quality of democracy, which improves the ability and willingness of those exercising power to use their power for the benefit of society.
  • Constitutional change, although indirect, can be transformative.
  • Constitutions are not just for lawyers, politicians and public servants, but for everyone.

The Arab Spring revolutions of 2011 and other uprisings against autocratic, corrupt or under-performing governments have highlighted the role of ordinary citizens, through the internet and social media, in orchestrating the downfall of regimes, while also showing the difficulties faced by ordinary citizens (owing partly to a lack of information and constitutional understanding) in seeking to engage in the subsequent constitution-building processes. These whiteboard animation videos are part of International IDEA’s contribution to civic education in support of such constitution-building processes. They explain the basic concepts of constitutionalism and constitution building to non-specialist audiences, with an emphasis on helping citizens to understand what a constitution is and does, how constitutions are made, and why the constitution is relevant to their lives. The videos are designed to be viewed online and shared through social media, but could also be used in more structured settings, such as a workshop or seminar, to provide a good general introduction to the subject on which to base further discussions or activities.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EeWfe2eZ_CI
Why do Constitutions Matter?
Video

Key Messages:

  • Constitutions are of indirect benefit: they can influence the quality of democracy, which improves the ability and willingness of those exercising power to use their power for the benefit of society.
  • Constitutional change, although indirect, can be transformative.
  • Constitutions are not just for lawyers, politicians and public servants, but for everyone.

The Arab Spring revolutions of 2011 and other uprisings against autocratic, corrupt or under-performing governments have highlighted the role of ordinary citizens, through the internet and social media, in orchestrating the downfall of regimes, while also showing the difficulties faced by ordinary citizens (owing partly to a lack of information and constitutional understanding) in seeking to engage in the subsequent constitution-building processes. These whiteboard animation videos are part of International IDEA’s contribution to civic education in support of such constitution-building processes. They explain the basic concepts of constitutionalism and constitution building to non-specialist audiences, with an emphasis on helping citizens to understand what a constitution is and does, how constitutions are made, and why the constitution is relevant to their lives. The videos are designed to be viewed online and shared through social media, but could also be used in more structured settings, such as a workshop or seminar, to provide a good general introduction to the subject on which to base further discussions or activities.

2014-10-30
How are Constitutions Made?
(2014-10-30)

Key Messages:

  • Constitution-building is a Process.
  • The process starts before and ends after agreeing the text.
  • Broad agreement and public support key to success of the process.
  • Building agreement takes time and will involve compromises.
  • ‘We the people’ means everyone.

The Arab Spring revolutions of 2011 and other uprisings against autocratic, corrupt or under-performing governments have highlighted the role of ordinary citizens, through the internet and social media, in orchestrating the downfall of regimes, while also showing the difficulties faced by ordinary citizens (owing partly to a lack of information and constitutional understanding) in seeking to engage in the subsequent constitution-building processes. These whiteboard animation videos are part of International IDEA’s contribution to civic education in support of such constitution-building processes. They explain the basic concepts of constitutionalism and constitution building to non-specialist audiences, with an emphasis on helping citizens to understand what a constitution is and does, how constitutions are made, and why the constitution is relevant to their lives. The videos are designed to be viewed online and shared through social media, but could also be used in more structured settings, such as a workshop or seminar, to provide a good general introduction to the subject on which to base further discussions or activities.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J36s0MTTxc8
How are Constitutions Made?
Video

Key Messages:

  • Constitution-building is a Process.
  • The process starts before and ends after agreeing the text.
  • Broad agreement and public support key to success of the process.
  • Building agreement takes time and will involve compromises.
  • ‘We the people’ means everyone.

The Arab Spring revolutions of 2011 and other uprisings against autocratic, corrupt or under-performing governments have highlighted the role of ordinary citizens, through the internet and social media, in orchestrating the downfall of regimes, while also showing the difficulties faced by ordinary citizens (owing partly to a lack of information and constitutional understanding) in seeking to engage in the subsequent constitution-building processes. These whiteboard animation videos are part of International IDEA’s contribution to civic education in support of such constitution-building processes. They explain the basic concepts of constitutionalism and constitution building to non-specialist audiences, with an emphasis on helping citizens to understand what a constitution is and does, how constitutions are made, and why the constitution is relevant to their lives. The videos are designed to be viewed online and shared through social media, but could also be used in more structured settings, such as a workshop or seminar, to provide a good general introduction to the subject on which to base further discussions or activities.

2014-10-30
What is a constitution?
(2014-10-30)

Key Messages:

  • We need government, but government must be controlled if it is to serve the people.
  • Constitution is a supreme law that is binding even on the government.
  • A constitution organises and constrains power.
  • A constitution defines a state and the rights of its citizen.
  • In a democratic order, the Constitution ensures that the people ultimately control the Government.

The Arab Spring revolutions of 2011 and other uprisings against autocratic, corrupt or under-performing governments have highlighted the role of ordinary citizens, through the internet and social media, in orchestrating the downfall of regimes, while also showing the difficulties faced by ordinary citizens (owing partly to a lack of information and constitutional understanding) in seeking to engage in the subsequent constitution-building processes. These whiteboard animation videos are part of International IDEA’s contribution to civic education in support of such constitution-building processes. They explain the basic concepts of constitutionalism and constitution building to non-specialist audiences, with an emphasis on helping citizens to understand what a constitution is and does, how constitutions are made, and why the constitution is relevant to their lives. The videos are designed to be viewed online and shared through social media, but could also be used in more structured settings, such as a workshop or seminar, to provide a good general introduction to the subject on which to base further discussions or activities.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UzKD8rZCc0
What is a constitution?
Video

Key Messages:

  • We need government, but government must be controlled if it is to serve the people.
  • Constitution is a supreme law that is binding even on the government.
  • A constitution organises and constrains power.
  • A constitution defines a state and the rights of its citizen.
  • In a democratic order, the Constitution ensures that the people ultimately control the Government.

The Arab Spring revolutions of 2011 and other uprisings against autocratic, corrupt or under-performing governments have highlighted the role of ordinary citizens, through the internet and social media, in orchestrating the downfall of regimes, while also showing the difficulties faced by ordinary citizens (owing partly to a lack of information and constitutional understanding) in seeking to engage in the subsequent constitution-building processes. These whiteboard animation videos are part of International IDEA’s contribution to civic education in support of such constitution-building processes. They explain the basic concepts of constitutionalism and constitution building to non-specialist audiences, with an emphasis on helping citizens to understand what a constitution is and does, how constitutions are made, and why the constitution is relevant to their lives. The videos are designed to be viewed online and shared through social media, but could also be used in more structured settings, such as a workshop or seminar, to provide a good general introduction to the subject on which to base further discussions or activities.

2014-10-30

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