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Constitutions as Guardrails for Society: Strong and weak constitutional democracies: (reflection on) the case of Italy

In the Chair: Lord Mance

Speakers: Professors Marta Cartabia & Nicola Lupo

Commentator – Professor Alison Young, Cambridge University

This is an in-person event and we warmly welcome all with an interest. A drinks reception will follow the lecture.

Constitutions are typically written after a major democratic crisis. They are meant to secure some rights and principles, in order to prevent any future backlash in the democratic game. The seminar aims at discussing the role of Constitutions as guardrails for the democratic institutions with a special focus on the Italian experience that belongs to the family of the “never again” Constitutions.

Speaker bio

Marta Cartabia, (PhD, European University Institute, 1993) is Professor of Constitutional Law at Bocconi University, Milan. Formerly she was a Judge and later the President of the Italian Constitutional Court (2011-2020)

She has served as Minister of Justice of Italy in the Draghi Government (February 2021 – October 2022). She taught in several Italian universities and was visiting scholar and professor in France, Spain, Germany and US. Since December 2017, she is a member for Italy of the European Commission for Democracy through Law of the Council of Europe (also known as Venice Commission), where she has been elected Vice-President in December 2023.

Nicola Lupo is Professor of Public Law and Director of the Center for Parliamentary Studies (Centro di Studi sul Parlamento) at LUISS Guido Carli University in Rome. He has been appointed by PM Draghi to coordinate the “Better Regulation Unit” for the purpose of implementing the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (2021-2023) . He has been the holder of a Jean Monnet Chair on “Understanding European Representative Democracy” (2018-2021) and visiting professor at several universities.

Professor Cartabia and Professor Lupo co-authored The Constitution of Italy. A Contextual Analysis published by Hart in 2022.

Alison Young is the Sir David Williams Professor of Public Law at the University of Cambridge, and a Fellow of Robinson College. She is the legal advisor to the House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution.


At this event

Andrea Biondi

Professor of European Union Law

Event details

Parliament Room
Middle Temple
The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, The Treasury Office, Ashley Building, Middle Temple Lane, London, EC4Y 9BT