Sustainability and Constitutions. The Constitutional State and the Dilemma of the Future Generations.

The paper deals with the emerging concept of “sustainability”, that, according to the empirical research presented here, is mentioned in the text of 55 constitutions, very often in relation with the environment or with the rights of future generations. As the vast majority of those references consists of very general substantive provisions, needing a legislative or judicial implementation, the paper deals with the challenges raised by the “aspirational constitutions” and with the role of the courts in their enforcement. Finally, it maintains that, in order to achieve effectivity, constitutions should include procedural provisions, aimed at integrating sustainability instances (throughout specialized bodies) into the legislative process.