Constitutionalism & Transition in Eastern Europe: 25 years after

University of Sofia "St. Kliment Ohridski" and Centre for Liberal Strategies

Are organising international seminar themed:

Constitutionalism and transition in Eastern Europe:

25 years later

Tuesday, 11th November 2014.

New conference room, University of Sofia Rectorate 

The aim of the international seminar is to offer a forum for reflection on the establishing and strengthening of constitutionalism in Eastern Europe after 1989. Constitutionalism - understood as the rule of law, separation of powers and protection of individual rights - is one of the essential elements of contemporary democratic polities. As a whole, Eastern Europe has been very successful in borrowing constitutional models from the so called developed democracies. However, 25 years after the transition began certain problems and obstacles are still at hand.
Specific challenges for the functioning of constitutionalism are presented by the rise of populist politics, general institutional weakness and widely spread corruption. What is the balance of achievements and unresolved problems? The seminar will search for answers in a comparative perspective. Prominent researchers from Hungary and Romania will meet their Bulgarian colleagues to share views and to make an assessment based on the experience of their countries and the region as a whole.
English will be the working language of the international seminar.
9:30-9:40 - Introductory words: Rumyana Kolarova, Associate Professor, Head of Political Science department, University of Sofia.
9:40-11:00 - First panel: Tendencies in Eastern Europe
Hungarian perspective: Professor Renata Uitz, Head of Legal Studies Department, Central European University, Budapest.
Bulgarian Perspective: Professor Georgi Bliznashki, University of Sofia, Prime Minister of Republic of Bulgaria (6th August 2014 - 7th November 2014).
Romanian perspective: Bogdan Iancu, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Bucharest and Alexandra Ionascu, Department of Political Science, University of Bucharest.
11:00-11:15 - Break
11:15-13:00 - Second Panel: National and Supra-national Challenges.
Prof. Evgeni Tanchev, Sofia University; Deputy chairman of the Venice Commission and Chairman of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Bulgaria (2009 - 2012)
Prof. Plamen Kirov, Sofia University; member of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Bulgaria.
Daniel Smilov, Associate Professor, University of Sofia and Centre for Liberal Strategiesр Sofia. 
Participants in the seminar will also be lecturers from the University of Sofia: Professor Georgi Karasimeonov, Associate Professor Martin Belov, Assistant Profesors Stoycho Stoychev, Mila Mineva, Ruzha Smilova, Milen Lyubenov, as well as PhD students and other students.