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Archiving for the future: the party constitution

White, Jonathan (2016) Archiving for the future: the party constitution. In: Gosseries, Axel and González-Ricoy, Iñigo, (eds.) Institutions for Future Generations. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.

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Political parties in contemporary western democracy are widely observed to be short-termist, their gaze extending little further than the next opinion poll. This presents a problem for those, within and beyond parties, who might look to such organisations as ways to advance long-term projects extending beyond the lifespans of individuals. How can parties be encouraged to take the longer view? The chapter examines the role of the party constitution, by which members commit to certain long-term goals and seek to bind their successors to these. Proceeding from a discussion of how constitutions in this context should be conceived, it looks at what they can achieve, and why they often fall short. It goes on to consider the mechanisms by which partisans might be held to their constitutional commitments (or induced to account for their sacrifice), notably by systematically publicising what these commitments are.

Item Type: Book Section
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2016 The Author
Divisions: European Institute
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2016 14:37
Last Modified: 05 Nov 2021 00:04

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