On 1 February 2019, CISRUL hosted a workshop on Autonomy, Sovereignty and Constitutional Change. Organised by Trevor Stack, Chuck Sturtevant and Valentin Clavé-Mercier, this workshop provided an opportunity to explore the meaning and potential materialisation of claims of autonomy and sovereignty in contexts of constitutional change. The workshop allowed for a constructive debate with an interdisciplinary audience that raised interesting questions about the difference between autonomy and sovereignty, the role of the state, and the capacity of achieving deep socio-political transformations through constitutional reform.

These and many other issues were addressed by the four speakers that shared their work. As keynote speaker, Prof. Nancy Postero (UCSD) presented an engaging lecture on Bolivian indigenous self-governance through the practical case of Charagua. She reflected on this indigenous community’s claims of autonomy and on their efforts to get it recognised in state law. Building on what might seem to be a contradiction, her lecture asked whether autonomy embedded in the constitution of a liberal nation-state can lead to indigenous self- determination.