MMP and the Constitution: 15 years past; 15 years forward New Zealand's political and constitutional system is notable for its adoption of the Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) voting. This year marks 15 years since the public referendum adopting this form of proportional representation, with the country shortly facing its fifth general election under MMP.The shift to MMP has been described as "the greatest change to the New Zealand constitution" in recent years. The 15th anniversary of the referendum on MMP provides an opportunity to undertake a constitutional stock-take – to review the effect of MMP on the constitutional fabric of the country. The anniversary also provides the opportunity to look forward – to assess the likely constitutional challenges that MMP presents in the next 15 years.A similar voting system has been adopted in the National Assembly for Wales and Scottish Parliament, with continuing calls for a form of proportional representation also to be adopted for the British Parliament. The lessons learned – and challenges faced – by New Zealand with its system of proportional representation will therefore also be of particular interest to the United Kingdom audience. The symposium will be video-cast between London and Wellington, with speakers and panellists from both centres contributing to the evaluation of the effect of proportional representation on the Westminster form of government. Constitutional scholars, political experts, and parliamentarians will reflect on the effect on the parliamentary process, political parties, and the operation of the Executive in New Zealand, with United Kingdom and European experts providing comparative perspectives on proportional representation. Speakers will also explore the future political and constitutional challenges presented by MMP and proportional representation both in New Zealand and elsewhere.
> NZCPL: "MMP and the Constitution", brochure and registration form > NZCPL: "MMP and the Constitution", online registration New Zealand Centre for Public Law GBLT1 and GBLT2, Government Buildings 15 Lambton Quay Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington New Zealand 6:30pm-10:00pm, Tuesday 26 August 2008 7:00am-10:30am, Wednesday 27 August 2008 Centre for New Zealand Studies ST274 and ST275, Stewart House 32 Russell Square Birkbeck, University of London, London United Kingdom 7:30am-11:00am, Tuesday 26 August 2008 8:00pm-11:30pm, Tuesday 26 August 2008