The Referendum on Chile’s process towards a Constitutional Assembly
02 November 2020, 5:00 pm–6:30 pm
Chile held a plebiscite on October 25 2020 on whether to redraft its constitution, how and by whom. The results returned overwhelming support for a new constitution, to be written by a Constituent Assembly whose members will be elected separately from the existing Congress and in which there will be gender parity.
This event is free.
- Sold out
UCL Institute of the Americas – UCL Institute of the Americas
After a year in which Chilean society was shaken to its foundations by rolling demonstrations and repression at the end of 2019 and then by COVID, an unprecedented plebiscite was held on October 25 2020 on whether to draw up a new constitution, and if so how should it be done and by whom.
The results returned overwhelming support for a new constitution, to be written by a Constituent Assembly whose members will be elected separately from the existing Congress and in which there will be gender parity.
The plebiscite is the start of a two-year constitution-making process, during which the country will have to deal with the ongoing pandemic and its economic fallout, and also elect a new president and Congress under the existing rules.
Exactly 50 years ago Chile elected the Popular Unity government led by Salvador Allende – the first democratically elected socialist government in the Americas – only to see it overthrown in the notorious coup of 1973. Since 1990 the country has been under elected civilian rule, but severely constrained by a constitution designed in secret by a small group to prevent for ever a return of socialism.
Today the country is again making history by giving an example of democratic and civic engagement, voting for a constitutional process designed to be inclusive and transparent.
The speakers at this event include Emmanuelle Barozet, recognized as one of the country’s most interesting social scientists, Javier Couso, leading expert on constitutional law, and Hassan Akran, author of a best-selling book on the causes of the popular uprising of 2019.
In the Chair will be David Lehmann, who has accompanied Chile’s trajectory since 1968.
Professor Emmanuelle Barozet, from the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Social Sciences at the Universidad de Chile and Centro de Estudios de Conflicto y Cohesión Social (COES), Universidad Diego Portales
Professor Javier Couso Salas, Public Law programme and Centro de Estudios de Conflicto y Cohesión Social (COES), Universidad Diego Portales,
Hassan Akram, Director, Wake Forest University’s Chile Centre; Lecturer in Public Policy Universidad Diego Portales; author of 'El Estallido. ¿Por qué? ¿Hacia dónde?’ - a book about grievances and demands of the social mobilisations that have shaken the country since October 2019.