From a potentially powerful to a polarised court: the emergence of dissenting opinions on the Croatian Constitutional Court

Monika Glavina*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

One of the most important aspects of making the 1990 Croatian Constitutional Court was the ‘establishment of an independent and potentially powerful’ court. For the first time since 1963, the Court obtained full powers of judicial review. Yet, despite its newly gained powers, the Croatian Constitutional Court refrained from an activist approach adopted by other constitutional courts in the region and was not fond of annulling laws adopted by the legislator. One possible explanation of such a conformist approach was the ideological consonance between the centre-right legislative and the centre-right Court. Most of the constitutional judges were appointed by the centre-right party (HDZ), which held the majority in the Parliament during the first decade of the country’s independence. However, recent years have witnessed an increase in the dissenting opinions, following the nomination of five judges from the centre-left opposition (SDP) to a predominantly centre-right Court. Based on the large-scale data collection efforts, this paper looks into the origin of these nominations, as well as their effect on the emergance of dissenting opinion and the growing ideological polarisation on the Court, which changed the relationship between judicial and legislative powers in Croatia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-536
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Politics and Society
Volume25
Issue number3
Early online date16 Aug 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Erasmus Sectorplan

  • Sectorplan Recht-Empirical Legal Studies

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