The politics of constitutional amendment in postcommunist Europe

Andrew Roberts*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


This paper analyzes the causes and consequences of constitutional amendments in Eastern Europe. Its results challenge the conventional wisdom that constitutional change is a consequence of institutions and that major changes will increase executive powers and limit rights. It finds that the political and social context rather than institutions is the main cause of amendments. These amendments moreover tend to reduce the power of executives and strengthen guarantees of human rights. The paper attributes these results to the particular circumstances of the postcommunist transition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-117
Number of pages19
JournalConstitutional Political Economy
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2009


  • Constitution
  • Constitutional amendment
  • Democracy
  • Democratic transition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Philosophy
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Law


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