00534 - Principles of Public Law (F-N)

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2017/2018

Learning outcomes

Objective of the course

The objective of the course is to provide students with the knowledge of the basic rules of the Italian institutional system, including the living aspects and the most recent developments, also from a political and constitutional standpoint.

So the course aims to provide students with

1.the capacity and the means to analyze and understand the organization of the State from the sources of law to Constitutional jurisdiction;

2.the capacity to deal with the principles of the constitutional system;

3.the capacity to understand the meaning of the institutional changes and their consequences.

Knowledge and skills expected

Knowledge that should be achieved in this course is about the regulation of Italian constitutional system, focusing especially on the sources of law and the form of State and government, the evolution of rights and Constitutional case law as the center of the system.

Course contents

Course contents


The content of the program:

- Introduction to law

- What law is and what it is for

- Judicial systems and legal framework

- The State and its components: people, territory, government

- Forms of State and historical evolution

- Contemporary states

- Forms of government: parliamentary, presidential, directorial

- Beyond the State: supranational and international systems.

- The sources of law

- The concept of law source

- Law sources system

- Features of laws: invalidity, cancellation and abrogation

- Production and cognizance sources, source-rule relationship

- Resolution of antinomy between two sources: chronological, hierarchical and competence criteria. Interpretation.

- The Constitutional source: the concept of Constitution and the Italian Constitution

- Ordinary laws from Parliament

- Decree law and Legislative decree

- Abrogative referendum as a source of law

- The new arrangement of regional Sources

- The problem of internal Regulations of constitutional authorities

- Secondary sources

- Regulation of the Government

- Local secondary Sources

- Factual Sources

- International and EC Sources

- Rights and freedoms:

- Fundamental rights in the Italian Constitution

- Guarantees of rights

- The principle of equality and other fundamental principles

- Individual freedoms

- Collective freedoms

- Social rights

- Economic freedoms

- Constitutional duties

- Rights in an European perspective

- Monographic part about rights:

- The Parliament

- Members and organs of the Chambers

- Legislative functions: ordinary, peripheral, mixed

- The Parliament and European laws

- The instruments of direct democracy

- Abrogative referendum

- Petition

- Popular law initiative

- The Government and the Administration

- The formation of Government

- Confidence and no confidence, government crisis

- Individual no confidence

- The President of the Republic and its powers and acts

- The principles of the Public Administration

- The local system

- Judicial power

- Constitutional Justice


GROPPI T. - SIMONCINI A., Introduzione allo studio del Diritto Pubblico e delle sue fonti, Torino, Giappichelli, ult. ed.

RESCIGNO F., Percorsi di eguaglianza, Torino, Giappichelli, 2016.

Lo studio del Diritto Pubblico si basa sulla Costituzione, si puo' dunque utilizzare quella inclusa nel Manuale o procurarsene una copia da avere SEMPRE a lezione.

The same programme (and same textbooks) applies to both oral and written exams, and both to attending and non-attending students.

Teaching methods

The course will be divided into two parts. The first part will be dedicated to a general introduction about the fundamentals of Public Law, especially the Constitutional principles and the sources of law (national sources, regional sources and the sources from the European Union). Then it will be focused on the form of State and the form of government as defined in the Constitution; the praxis and the evolution will be taken into consideration. Another fundamental part of the program is about rights and freedoms (especially the principle of equality without religious discrimination will be deeply analyzed). The study of these aspects is related to the judiciary system and constitutional justice, that represents an instrument of protection of the whole constitutional organization.

The program will be dealt with entirely during the course and will be completed by Seminars about specific topics.

Assessment methods

The exam of Public Right can be passed in two ways:
  • 1) by passing two written tests (sets of quiz and open questions)

The first test will take place approximately halfway during the period of lessons; the second test will be held after the end of lessons. Dates of the tests will be decided by the teacher, with no chance of making up; dates will be communicated one week before each test. No enrollment will be needed: students will only have to show up on the date and at the time set by the teacher.

Passing the first written test is mandatory to undergo the second one! which therefore cannot be undergone unless fhe first one has been passed.

The exam will be passed by obtaining a positive result in both tests. The final score will be calculated as a mean of the two partial scores.

In order to get official reporting of the final score, students must sign up for one of the oral exam sessions by following the procedure on Almaesami and show up to obtain teacher’s signature. Oral sessions start approximately 10-15 days after the end of lessons. Should a student refuse the score resulting from the mean of the two partial scores, he/she will have to undergo a full oral examination. Expiry date of written tests results is that of the following January-February oral session.

  • 2) by passing an entirely oral examination

Students may choose to attend lessons without undergoing written tests: in this case, the exam will be oral. Signing up to one oral session by following  Almaesami procedure is also mandatory; sessions will begin after the end of lessons. 

Please notice that students who do not pass the first written test cannot access the second one: therefore, they must undergo a complete oral examination.

The same programme (and same textbooks) applies to both oral and written exams, and both to attending and non-attending students.

Teaching tools

During the classes the teacher will use:

overhead projector;

Power point.

Office hours

See the website of Francesca Rescigno