Constitutional institutions (Italy)

The constitutional institutions of Italy (Italian: organi costituzionali italiani) are institutions of the Italian Republic which are defined in the constitution.


In Italian jurisprudence, these are defined as the essential and immutable institutions of the State, which are foreseen as existing by the Italian constitution and whose fundamental powers and organisation are directly defined by the constitution. They have a relationship of mutual parity and they take part in the so-called "political process" (funzione politica), that is, they directly determine the goals to be pursued by the state.< name="Luiss">Dr. Massimo Ribaudo - introduzione al diritto costituzionale</ref>

Because these institutions are directly defined by the constitution, codification of any of them is a modification of the constitution and therefore requires the passage of a constitutional law. Their very existence, however, constitutes a limit on the modification of the constitution.[1]

The institutionsEdit

The constitutional institutions are:[1][2]


Although all public expenses are included in the national budget, which is drafted by the government and approved by parliament, it is claimed that the constitutional institutions, which the constitution places outside the administrative control of the executive, are self-governing and should have control of their own finances. According to this argument, the budgets of the President, Constitutional Court, and Parliament cannot be reduced without their consent. A minority opinion, emphasising the treatment of the regional councils,[3] have questioned this argument.

Although the President, Constitutional Court and the Parliament have full autonomy in the administration of the resources assigned to them, according to the principle of "autocriny" (autocrinia),[4] it is now firmly established that their administrative offices should be composed of employees recruited by public competition,[5] as set down by the constitutional law on public employment. Legal provisions directly dealing with these administrations, governing the behaviour of public employees generally, remain rare.[6] The entire public sector's freedom from the legal and economic regulations of contracts derives from the principle of "autodicy" (autodichia), that is, the idea that constitutional institutions should be in charge of their own internal regulation.[7]


  1. ^ a b "Dr. Massimo Ribaudo - introduzione al diritto costituzionale". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  2. ^ "Sito ufficiale del Governo italiano" (in Italian). Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  3. ^ Irene Testa & Alessandro Gerardi, Parlamento zona franca, Rubbettino, 2013, state that the Constitutional Court judged laws that had limited the budgets of the autonomous territorial entities (which are constitutional institutions) to be legitimate, since although it regulated the amount, it left them free to decide how that was spent.
  4. ^
  5. ^ The last attempt to reverse this was made by the Quirinal during the presidency of Francesco Cossiga, whose project "attempting to replace the regular staff with the personal selection of key officers as done in other administrations, prefigured a support staff which changed everytime the head of state was replaced... failed due to the firm opposition of the internal unions and the lack of endorsement from the ad hoc commission" led by Livio Paladin (Tito Lucrezio Rizzo, Parla il Capo dello Stato, Gangemi, 2012, p. 183.
  6. ^ One of the first cases was the declaration of the "capability of the constitutional institutions to recruit their personnel with the aforementioned process." in Article 10.1(c) of Senate Act no. 1577: the text, contained in a draft law under the Renzi government, did not appear in the final law, passed as Law no. 124, 7 August 2015
  7. ^ Dipendenti della Camera dei Deputati

See alsoEdit