The Re-Constitution of Society: The Chilean Experiment

As part of our project, Reimagining Rights in the Americas, we took a closer look at Chile’s constitutional process. Since 2019, Chile has been struggling with one of its history’s most profound social crises and the political establishment’s answer on how to address the social discontent was to start a constitutional drafting process through a 100% elected body, with the participation of Indigenous people with gender equality conditions.

The idea of starting a constitutional process was approved by almost 80% of the voters in 2020, yet recently, on September 4, 2022, more than 60% of voters rejected the new constitution proposal.

Is a constitutional-writing process a way of canalizing social unrest? Are changes in law sufficient to change traditions and history? What explains such shocking results? What lessons can be learned from an international perspective?


This event was co-sponsored by the Emmett Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at UCLA Law.