Elena Ferioli

The Spread of Dissenting Opinion in European Constitutional Courts

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Although long considered foreign to the civil law tradition, the publication of separate dissenting or concurring opinions is now allowed by the majority of European constitutional courts. While there is an extensive literature in the United States regarding the use of dissent, research is still progressing in Europe. The aim of this research is to examine the actual practice in European constitutional courts in order to have a better understanding of their decision-making process and internal dynamics. The theses I will uphold in this paper are the followings: the practice of dissenting opinions has its own different settings in constitutional courts and, consequently, the findings of common law studies might be tailored when the deal is with European constitutional courts; the practice of dissenting opinions should be considered a valid support to consolidate pluralist democracies.


  • Dissenting Opinion
  • Constitutional Democracy
  • Pluralism
  • Judicial Review
  • Kelsenian Model


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