the European IGCs invariably also hold interest from a comparative constitutional law perspective. Judged in these terms, the IGC is a highly curious phenomenon. This article seeks to sketch what appear to be the most salient characteristics of the intergovernmental conference as a general instrument of constitutional reform. In so doing, it also examines the fruits of the latest intergovernmental conference-the IGC that opened in Turin, Italy, in March 1996 and culminated in the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997. Finally, it implies some of the ways in which the intergovernmental conference, as a vehicle for constitutional reform, might in the future be made better adapted to its task.



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