00223 - Italian and Comparative Constitutional Law

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Peace, justice and strong institutions

Academic Year 2020/2021

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student will be able to: - - know the basics of legal comparison, the most important notions about the sources of the law of foreign legal system and how to relate their dynamics to the forms of government; - orientate himself through classifications and models of "forms of state" and "forms of government", grasping the meaning of their evolution; - reconstruct and order, also in the light of constitutional justice, the rules regarding regionalism and federalism; - know the most important models of constitutional judicial review and connect its role both with the forms of government and the protection of rights; - know the basics about current problems regarding rights (freedom of association and unconstitutional parties, human rights and emergency situations); - know the provisions of Italian constitution which are relevant for international relations, resulting from a deep study of their most problematic aspects.

Course contents

The course is organized with a part of lectures taught online on MS TEAMS (30 hours) and another taught in presence (30 hours). The number of students allowed in class is determined on the basis of class capacity and by the health and safety provisions that deal with the pandemic emergency. In case more students want to attend classes in presence than permitted by the rules, a system of shifts will be organized so to allow students to participate. Regardless of the health-related conditions and the specific organization of the course, students will be able to follow the lessons of the entire course remotely on MS TEAMS.


General part

1. Science and method of comparative law. 2. Constitutions and constitutionalism. 3. Sources of law. 4. Legal Families and Forms of State, with particular reference to decentralisation. 5. Forms of government. 6. Branches of government. 7. Constitutional Adjudication. 8. Rights and freedoms.

Special part

Specific topics (methods in comparative law, territorial government, forms of government, constitutional adjudication, constitutional amendment, Roma minorities, India, Austral Africa).


General part

L. Pegoraro, A. Rinella, Sistemi costituzionali comparati, Giappichelli, Torino, 2020

Special part

Students have to choose one of the following readings:

G. Tusseau, Modelli di giustizia costituzionale. Saggio di critica metodologica, B.U.P., Bologna, 2009

A.-G. Gagnon, Oltre la "nazione unificatrice" (in difesa del federalismo multinazionale), B.U.P., Bologna, 2008

S. Baldin, Le minoranze rom fra esclusione sociale e debole riconoscimento giuridico, B.U.P., Bologna, 2013

S. Ragone, I controlli giurisdizionali sulle revisioni costituzionali, B.U.P., Bologna, 2011

S. Bagni, Giustizia costituzionale comparata. Proposte classificatorie a confronto, B.U.P., Bologna, 2014

D. Amirante, Lo Stato multiculturale. Contributo alla teoria dello Stato dalla prospettiva dell’Unione indiana, B.U.P., Bologna, 2014

M. Nicolini, L’altra Law of the Land. La famiglia giuridica “mista” dell’Africa australe, B.U.P., Bologna, 2016

For the preparation of the exam:

Items for the written test will be selected from: L. Pegoraro, Diritto pubblico e sistemi costituzionali comparati. Itinerari di apprendimento e di verifica, Giappichelli, Torino, 2nd ed., 2020. Only items contained in the book will be used for the written test. 

DISCLAIMER: as long as the COVID-19 restrictions are in place and exams are held orally and remotely, the multiple choice questions will be asked during the oral exam.

Teaching methods

The course consists of lessons, seminars and weekly discussions based on the students' presentations. 

Attendance to seminars, presentations and active partecipation also online will be taken into account when defining the final grade, as it will be explained by the Professor.


Assessment methods

The final exam will consist on a written and an oral part.

Passing the written admission test, on the general part of the syllabus, will be necessary to sit the oral exam. The written admission test consists of multiple choice questions. Tests will be graded on site, and the results posted immediately. Items will regard only the general part of the contents.

Those who pass the written admission text will sit an oral exam. The oral exam will focus on the textbook (i.e. the general part of the syllabus) and on the book chosen by the student for the special part.

DISCLAIMER: as long as the COVID-19 restrictions are in place, exams will be held orally and multiple choice questions will be asked during the oral examinations.

After the first half of the course, full-time students can sit a written exam that will consist of one short essay about the book of the special part. Those who pass the written exam will not be asked about the book (i.e. the special part of the program of the course) during the final oral exam. Students who cannot attend classes will be allowed to take an oral exam on the selected book for the special part. The result will also be taken into account so as to determine the final grade.


Erasmus and Exchange students:

Syllabus and assessment methods for Erasmus and Exchange students are the same as for Italian students. However, on the basis of a specific request, they can be exempted from sitting the written admission test.

Teaching tools

The course consists of lessons, seminars and weekly discussions based on the students' essays.

External scholars, mainly from abroad, will be invited as guest speakers.

Links to further information


Office hours

See the website of Lucio Pegoraro