Constituting Transitions: Predicting Unpredictability

Citation: Bell, C. and Forster, R. ‘Constituting Transitions: Predicting Unpredictability.’ In De Groof, E. (Ed.), Wiebusch, M. (Ed.). (2020). International Law and Transitional Governance: Critical Perspectives. London: Routledge, https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429057786

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Summary: This chapter is part of International Law and Transitional Governance: Critical Perspectives, which examines the role of international law in shaping and regulating transitional contexts, including the institutions, policies, and procedures that have been developed to steer constitutional regime changes in countries affected by catalytic events.

The book offers a new perspective on the phenomenon of conflict-related transitions, whereby societies are re-constitutionalized through a set of interim governance arrangements subject to variable degrees of internationalization. Specifically, this volume interrogates the relevance, contribution, and perils of international law for this increasingly widespread phenomenon of inserting an auxiliary phase between two ages of constitutional government. It develops a nuanced understanding of the various international legal discourses surrounding conflict- and political crisis-related transitional governance by studying the contextual factors that influence the transitional arrangements themselves, with a specific focus on international aspects, including norms, actors, and related forms of expertise. In doing so, the book builds a bridge between comparative constitutional law and international legal scholarship in the practical and highly dynamic terrain of transitional governance. Featuring contributions from PSRP Programme Director Christine Bell, Robert Forster of Chr. Michelsen Institute, and Sumit Bisarya of International IDEA.

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