Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 05 April 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Constitutions have been a central topic for the economic analysis of law since Buchanan and Tullock (1961) introduced the discipline of constitutional political economy. From the outset economic analysis has been deployed for both positive and normative ends. Their project was normative, but economic analysis provides tools to critique real world constitutions and to analyze their attributes. Optimal design of constitutions in theory is rarely matched in practice, but this is no hindrance to understanding the form, duration, and impact of actual constitutions. This chapter reviews the ends of constitutional design. It offers a positive theory of constitutional bargaining which can be used to inform normative design questions. Whether particular institutions ought to be included in a constitution depends on the extent to which such texts make a difference, which is an empirical question subject to some scrutiny. A review of the empirical literature on constitutional design concludes.

Keywords: constitutional design, constitutional bargaining, normative design, economic analysis, law

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.