Call for Proposals: Political Parties & Constitutions in Asia

Deadline for submissions: 1 April 2022

The Oxford Programme in Asian Laws is pleased to announce a workshop on “Political Parties & Constitutions in Asia”, scheduled for 23-24 September 2022 in Oxford. The relationship of political parties to constitutions has received inadequate attention in Asian comparative constitutional studies. The aim of this workshop is to encourage and provide a forum for scholarship on the role of political parties in constitutional design and practice. We invite papers addressing aspects of political parties and constitutions in East Asia, South Asia, and South-East Asia. The papers may be single-country studies, comparative, or examine ideological themes within the region. The following list of possible themes is indicative, but not exhaustive:

  • role of political parties in the process of constitution-making and formal constitutional amendments;
  • the contrasting role of parties in single party and multi-party states;
  • the role of parties in linking the people and governing institutions;
  • relationship between parties' ideology and the contents of constitutions;
  • constitutional or sub-constitutional regulation of party behaviour, internal structures, and organisation;
  • relationship between political parties and the state, including separation or fusion of party and state;
  • rights and powers of opposition parties.

Methodologically, papers may engage with the issue through legal-doctrinal, political science, or political theory lenses. We particularly welcome submissions from doctoral and postdoctoral students and early career scholars.  

The organiser of the workshop is OPAL, the Oxford Programme in Asian Laws.

Format of the Workshop

The organisers have scheduled the workshop for 23-24 September 2022 with the hope that it will be possible for us to physically convene in Oxford.  Accommodation for the nights of the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th will be provided, together with meals on the 23rd and 24th.   The organisers may provide partial funding to cover travel costs to the UK for selected scholars whose home institutions are unable to provide it, subject to the overall budget. Participants will need to fulfil any visa and health insurance requirements on their own. The organisers will explore other formats or alternative dates for the workshop should a physical event not be possible in September 2022.  Final reimbursement of any agreed costs is subject to the submission of a full draft of the paper by the notified deadline prior to the workshop and participation in the workshop in the agreed form. 

The organisers will circulate specific details to selected participants closer to the time. Participants will be expected to read all selected papers prior to the workshop. Discussions on papers will be led by discussants / commentators and not authors, to facilitate a thorough discussion on papers. Participants will be expected to attend all sessions and participate in discussions on all papers.

Submission Information

 To apply please submit the following (as a single PDF document, with your surname as the file name):

  • CV (no more than 2 pages)
  • A paper proposal (of no more than 1000 words) clearly outlining your hypothesis, research questions and structure of arguments (focussed, clearly written, original and feasible proposals will be preferred)
  • A list of relevant bibliographical references (no more than 1 page)

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to develop their proposal into an early draft (of around 4000-5000 words) of the proposed paper. The final selection will be made on the basis of this draft.

Tentative timeline:

  • Submission of proposal – 1 April 2022
  • Notification of whether a candidate has been shortlisted – 18 April 2022
  • Submission of early draft by shortlisted candidates – 20 May 2022
  • Notification of whether a candidate has been selected – 15 June 2022
  • Submission of full draft paper by selected candidates – 10 September 2022

Please email your applications to by 1 April 2022.

Funding for the conference is provided by Oxford’s Programme for the Foundations of Law and Constitutional Government.