Former Tunisian president hosts forum on “Modern Constitution-Making”

Dr. Moncef Marzouki to speak as part of a panel on “Modern Constitution-Making.” Marzouki was Tunisia’s president from 2011 to 2014.

The University of South Carolina welcomes former Tunisian President Dr. Moncef Marzouki to campus this March as the 2017 Sonoco Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Moore School of Business. While in Columbia, Marzouki will conduct a series of forums and meetings organized in collaboration with the university’s Darla Moore School of Business, the  Walker Institute of International Area Studies, and the  Rule of Law Collaborative.   

On Wednesday, Mar. 22, a special event featuring Marzouki will be offered at the School of Law. Members of the public are invited to join students, alumni, faculty and staff of the law school for a forum titled, “Modern Constitution-Making.” The forum will focus on Tunisia’s efforts to engage in the region’s first constitution-making process outside of the influence of either a dictator or colonial power. It begins at 5:30 p.m. in the law school auditorium, and is free and open to the public.

Additional members of the panel include:

  • Hamid Khan, deputy director, Rule of Law Collaborative
  • Aparna Polavarapu, assistant professor of law
  • Wadie Said, professor of law
  • Joel Samuels, director, Rule of Law Collaborative

The law school event follows up on a public panel to be held the day before, Tuesday, Mar. 21, titled “The Hodges Forum on International Affairs, ‘The Jasmine Revolution and the Future of the Middle East.’” It will begin at 5:30 p.m. at Capstone House

Marzouki’s visit comes at a pivotal time, as a new U.S. administration shapes its international policies and approaches to the Middle East. Marzouki was elected president of Tunisia by the Constituent Assembly, a body elected to govern the country and draft a new constitution following Tunisia’s revolution in 2011. Also known as the “Jasmine Revolution,” Tunisia’s successful uprising was a seminal moment in Arab history, which helped ignite popular revolutions throughout the Middle East. A medical doctor, human rights activist and author of numerous works, he is credited with bringing governmental transparency and participative democracy to Tunisia and creating an environment where civil organizations could flourish.