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Max Planck Law is committed to the promotion of excellence in legal research.

All participating Institutes engage in fundamental research at the highest level. Their research projects tend to be highly innovative and both intra- and interdisciplinary in nature. We cooperate with top law schools and research institutes around the world.

Our Institutes provide the perfect infrastructure to pursue research, including access to rare specialist libraries and the relevant databases. They offer a stimulating environment for the exchange of ideas, not least through numerous events that bring our members together with leading international scholars, policy makers, and practitioners.

Research is conducted across the entire range of legal disciplines. The core disciplines of private, public and criminal law are mostly analysed from a comparative and transnational perspective. The same is true for more discrete and specialized fields, such as the law of procedure, human rights law, the law of citizenship, company law, and tax law. We are interested in law in its cultural, economic, historical, social, economic, and philosophical context, so we have a strong focus on both theoretical and empirical legal studies.

We make our research available through a wide variety of publications, including the prestigious journals and book series published by our Institutes.


1. Doctoral and Postdoctoral Research

Max Planck Law is committed to excellence in doctoral studies and postdoctoral training.

Early career researchers benefit from close supervision and mentoring by world leaders in their respective fields. Our Institutes offer unrivalled conditions, including access to rare specialist libraries and data bases, generous work spaces, administrative, academic, and pastoral support, and not least, the possibility of generous funding for research-related travel and general maintenance.

In addition, there are numerous opportunities to participate in conferences, seminars and workshops, offered at the participating Institutes and by Max Planck Law. These enable our doctoral students and postdocs to enhance their specialist expertise and deepen their intra- and interdisciplinary perspectives.

We encourage applications from exceptional candidates for a variety of research positions, either as doctoral students or at postdoctoral level. Proposed research projects are expected to fall within one or more of the various research fields pursued at one of the Institutes. Early career researchers are closely involved in the overall research context. While the doctoral training programme is more structured, postdocs conduct their research with mentoring and advice offered by the Institutes’ Directors and other senior scholars.

Early career scholars have no teaching obligations and are generously funded through employment and support contracts. Doctoral students do not pay fees. Doctorates are awarded by a university to which the supervisor or the student has close links, not by Max Planck Law or one of the participating Institutes.

If you would like to join a world-class institution and its dedicated community of scholars, start by taking a look at the subject areas in the acordian to find the Institute that suits you. Links are provided for you to find out more about the Institute and methods for application. Second, take a look at the positions Institutes are looking to actively fill here: https://law.mpg.de/jobs/

2. Funding for Cooperations

As a network, Max Planck Law facilitates cooperation across the eleven participating Institutes, including joint research projects and the possibility of combining these projects with training initiatives. Cooperation can take the form of limited projects, longer-term initiatives, permanent fora, and cooperations with external insitutions. If you are currently engaged in research at any one of our eleven Institutes and would like further information on eligibilty and how to apply, please email:


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