Academic Claudio Fuentes, expert in constitutional changes, gives a talk at Cesco about constituent process

To achieve a better understanding of the constitutional process that is taking place in Chile, the Center for Copper and Mining Studies (Cesco) invited the Diego Portales University academic, Claudio Fuentes, to give a talk on this new scenario.

On the occasion, Fuentes presented the deadlines set to specify the plebiscite for the realization of a new Constitution, in addition to explaining the differences between the two modalities of the Convention: a mixed one, which would have 50% of its members elected by citizens and the remaining 50% conformed by congressmen; and a Constituent, where 100% of its members would be by popular election.

“Among the factors that are under discussion today, there are the competition rules of independents, gender parity, seats reserved for indigenous peoples, electoral financing rules, the disability regime, among others,” Fuentes explained during his presentation.

For the expert, among the foreseeable effects of the process that is being developed in Chile, it is very likely that the political pact on the new Constitution is agreed, and so is that the citizens approve this stage. “When people have been asked in the polls if a change in the Constitution is necessary, 87% said yes,” he explained.

According to what was observed by Fuentes throughout his career, the academic considers it probable that the Constitutional Convention will be approved, and that it will be unlikely that the correlations of power in the Convention will change given the electoral system, which implies that, if the balance of power is maintained, there will be moderate changes in the new Constitution.

Claudio Fuentes is Associate Professor at the School of Political Science at the Diego Portales University. He has a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill), and his academic interests have been focused on the study of political processes in Chile and Latin America, focusing in recent years on the study of the dynamics of institutional change.