New constitutions are written every year. The people who write these important documents need to read and analyze texts from other places. And citizens need to know, and to be able to understand, what’s in their countries’ foundational documents. Constitute offers access to the world’s constitutions so that users can systematically compare them across a broad set of topics—using an inviting, clean interface.
HOW TO EXPLORE CONSTITUTIONS ON CONSTITUTE?
Constitute allows you to interact with the world’s constitutions in a few different ways.
- Quickly find relevant passages. The Comparative Constitutions Project (CCP) has tagged passages of each constitution with a topic—e.g., “right to privacy” or “equality regardless of gender”—so you can quickly find relevant excerpts on a particular subject, no matter how they are worded. You can browse the 300+ topics via the “Search | Topics | Filters” menu on the Constitutions page, or see suggested topics while typing in the search bar (which also lets you perform free-text queries).
- Filter searches. Want to view results for a specific region or time period, or explore draft or historical texts? You can limit your search by specific parameters using the “Filters” options in the “Search | Topics | Filters” menu.
- Read excerpts in List or Compare view. You can view searched excerpts within the default “List View,” or you can view two texts (or just their excerpts) side-by-side in “Compare View,” still with the same search functionality.
- Pin for further analysis. Pin excerpts, comparisons, or searches by clicking the “pin” button next to an expanded passage, the pin button at the top of the search results page, or the pin button on the right side of the comparison page. You can then view and download your pinned content by clicking on the “Pinned” link in the upper right section of the Constitutions page. Pinned items can be exported to Google Docs, rendered in PDF, or downloaded in .csv.
Furthermore, all of Constitute’s URLs are deep links, meaning you can link to a particular topic search, constitutional comparison, or even a specific constitutional provision directly, or share them on your social media accounts.
The Countries, Topics, and Data Stories sections of the website allow users to learn more about each country’s constitutional history, explore CCP’s inventory of constitutional topics, or dig deeper into analyzing the data.
USE OF DATA
Except for material identified as copyrighted by other parties, the content of constituteproject.org is provided under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial 3.0 Unported License (which allows you to make free use of information from the site for noncommercial purposes). An appropriate citation for material on the site would be:
- Elkins, Zachary, Tom Ginsburg, James Melton. Constitute: The World’s Constitutions to Read, Search, and Compare. Online at constituteproject.org.
William S. Hein and Company and the Oxford University Press have provided certain materials from their online collections of constitutional texts. We encourage interested users to explore their products at HeinOnline and Oxford Constitutions of the World. Much of the translated constitutional text on Arabic Constitute has been provided by International IDEA, in partnership with the Constitute team. The data that power the site are architected and maintained according to principles of the semantic web and available for download here. For more information on these data and other ways to interact with it, visit the website of the Comparative Constitutions Project.