by Marie-Elisabeth Boggio*
This paper is a short overview of my research on parliamentary practices and the comparison I make between practices in the French Parliament and in the UK Parliament. We know that both are governed by written rules. On the one hand, the UK Houses of Parliament are run according to Standing Orders and certain Parliament Acts. On the other hand, the French Chambres are governed by Internal Rules and several organic laws which are enforced by the Conseil constitutionnel(Constitutional Council). But these written rules are not enough to describe precisely and comprehensively the running of Parliaments: more rules are needed to govern the respective Houses/Chambres. These rules are unwritten and we call them “parliamentary practices”. This paper will describe the concept of “parliamentary practices”, a category on which little research has been carried out, at least in France. It will also explain the reason why a comparison between France and the United Kingdom might be of interest on this topic. Finally, there will be a comparative study of some practices to demonstrate their significance for parliamentary proceedings in both countries.