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Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy

Department Foreign and International Social Law
Professor Dr Ulrich Becker LLM (EUI)

In accordance with its interdisciplinary orientation the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy examines socio-political issues from a legal and economic perspective. The Department of Foreign and International Social Law investigates, mainly by way of comparative research, the particular features of social law as an instrument for the implementation of social policy measures and as a special field of administrative law. The main focus is on systems that safeguard against social risks, such as illness, old age, long-term care, invalidity, unemployment and accidents, as well as systems that provide social aid and support. A systematic study of the principal developments in social law is of central importance. The emphasis here is primarily on three interlinked processes: reforms in the social security systems of developed countries, the Europeanisation and internationalisation of social law, and the establishment of social benefit systems in developing countries.

Research Focus

Europeanization and Internationalization of Social Law

Both lead to new regulation levels and thus to new regulatory approaches as well as new interdependencies between the individual levels.

The Restructuring of Social Bnefits Systems in Developed States.

This is an expression of altered socio-political goals but also of underlying general social developments; related to it is the use of new regulatory approaches and techniques that may radiate on the development of the legal system.

The Transformation of Social Bnefits Systems in Developing and Threshold Countries.

This sheds light on the possibilities of creating universal social standards and, compared to the development of the social law of European states, it especially provides insights into the factors relevant to the development and hence also into the possible stages of development and their genetic, social and cultural conditionality.

Studying at the Institute

Limited grants are available for guest scholars at the Insitute and there is always the possibility to pursue doctoral studies. 

For further information and application please visit the Insitutes’s website: https://www.mpisoc.mpg.de/2285/en



Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy

Amalienstr. 33
80799 Munich

Tel: +49 89 38602-0
Fax: +49 89 38602-490


For information on the Guest Programme:


To enquire about applying as a doctoral student:

Professor Dr Ulrich Becker, LLM (EUI)
Secretary: Claudia Gajda

Tel: +49 (0)89 38602 – 511
Fax: +49 (0)89 38602 – 590