Constitutional Theory

27 May 2013

Professor Wojciech Sadurski teaches this second semester early intensive which examines the theoretical attempts at reconciling commitments to constitutionalism with emphasis on democratic participation.

Constitutional Theory will address the role that constitutionalism is expected to play in a democratic state, and explore various constitutional theories.

Content covered includes:

  • Is it paradoxical that a state governed by majority rules withdraws certain areas from collective decision-making?
  • Various theories of constitutionalism, of constitutional interpretation, and of constitutional judicial review
  • The question of constitutional charters of rights, different models of judicial review, separation of powers, direct democracy and the functions of constitutions in transitions to democratic system.

Wojciech Sadurski is the Challis Professor in Jurisprudence in the University of Sydney.

He also holds a position of Professor in the Centre for Europe in the University of Warsaw, and is visiting professor (in 2010, 2011 and 2012) at the University of Trento, Italy and in Cardozo Law School in New York.

He was Professor of Legal Theory and Philosophy of Law in the Department of Law, European University Institute in Florence (1999-2009), and served as head of department of Law at the EUI in 2003-2006.

He also taught as visiting professor at a number of universities in Europe, Asia and the United States.

He has written extensively on philosophy of law, political philosophy and comparative constitutional law.

He recently returned from Myanmar, where he conducted a three-day workshop on constitutional reform, under the auspices of the Sydney Law School, in Yangon, Myanmar (Burma), with the participation of representatives of a very wide spectrum of this country's political stakeholders, including Aung San Suu Kyi, Chair of the National League for Democracy and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.


Sydney Law School

New Law Building (F10)

Eastern Avenue, University of Sydney

Semester 1 Intensive

2-3 & 16-17 August 2013


  • Oral Presentation (20%)
  • Class Participation (20%)
  • 1 x 4,500 Word Essay (60%)

Constitutional Theory is available to study through the following Sydney Law School degree programmes:

Legal practitioners can count this unit of study towards Mandatory Continuing Legal Educaiton (MCLE) or Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

Candidates can also enrol in this subject on a Legal Professional Development (LPD), Single Unit Enrolment or Cross-Institutional basis.

Candidates can elect to complete the assessment, claim the MCLE or CPD points and then count the unit towards a degree at a later stage.

Alternatively, candidates can elect not to complete the assessment but still claim the MCLE or CPD points.

For further enquiries or to apply or enrol, please contact the Postgraduate Team.

Contact: Greg Sherington

Phone: +61 2 9351 0202

Email: 1f1620505932510e3d18251d372719750337503e202e78235742651136