Center for Constitutional Transitions & International IDEA

Political Party Finance Regulation: Constitutional reform after the Arab Spring

The Constitutional Transitions Clinic ‘back office’ is preparing a series of thematic, comparative research reports on issues in constitutional design that have arisen in the Middle East and North Africa. These reports are jointly published by Constitutional Transitions and International IDEA in English and Arabic, and will be used as engagement tools in support of constitution-building activities in the region.

This report, Political Party Finance Regulation: Constitutional reform after the Arab Spring, applies comparative and academic research on political party finance law to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with a focus on Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia as post-authoritarian states currently engaging in comprehensive reform of their political institutions, and utilizing examples from other newer and more established democracies. The report discusses five areas of political party finance regulation: the provision of public funds to parties and campaigns; limits on party income; limits on party spending; disclosure of party finances to the public; and enforcement of political party finance laws. These five key areas are intersected by cross-cutting themes, which are considered throughout:  whether party finance rules operate on an ongoing basis, on an electoral campaign basis, or both; whether party finance rules operate at national, regional, and local levels of party organization, or only some of these; the role of actors who are not parties or candidates; the use of state resources by parties in power; and the importance of incentivizing compliance with party finance rules. The report concludes with a set of recommendations for constitution drafters and policy makers in the MENA region.

The other reports in the series are:

Read the Report:

Download the full report (English)(Arabic)

About the Partner Organizations

Constitutional Transitions generates and mobilizes knowledge in support of constitution building. Constitutional Transitions generates knowledge by identifying issues of critical importance to the success of constitutional transitions, where a lack of adequate, up-to-date research impedes the effectiveness of technical assistance for constitution building, and assembles and leads international networks of experts to complete thematic research projects that offer evidence-based policy options to practitioners. Constitutional Transitions mobilizes knowledge through an innovative clinical program that provides “back office” research support to constitutional advisors in the field, and deploys faculty experts and field researchers for support on the ground. We meet existing field missions’ needs for comprehensive research, dramatically enhancing their effectiveness and efficiency in their role as policy advisors and actors.

International IDEA is an intergovernmental organization with 28 member states that supports sustainable democracy worldwide. International IDEA’s mission is to support sustainable democratic change by providing comparative knowledge, and assisting in democratic reform, and influencing policies and politics.

International IDEA produces comparative knowledge in its key areas of expertise: electoral processes, constitution building, political participation and representation, and democracy and development, as well as on democracy as it relates to gender, diversity, and conflict and security. IDEA’s work is non-prescriptive and IDEA takes an impartial and collaborative approach to democracy cooperation; emphasizing diversity in democracy, equal political participation, representation of women and men in politics and decision making, and helping to enhance the political will required for change. International IDEA is a Permanent Observer to the United Nations.