Current Institute research on the coronavirus pandemic

Current Institute research on the coronavirus pandemic

COVID-19 affected all aspects of life in 2020. Legislation enacted as a result of the pandemic encroaches on the personal lives of all people and poses wholly new challenges to authorities, organizations and commercial enterprises. What does this mean for the legal relationships governed by private law? What answers can international comparative law provide? What role does foundational legal research play in devising new solutions?

In recent months, researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law have shown the extent to which basic research can contribute to the clarification of current and long-term issues.

“COVID-19 has demonstrated the role of scientific inquiry and the communication of scientific findings. Numerous research achievements from the past year have, furthermore, proven that the pandemic is by no means a topic exclusive to the fields of medicine or the natural sciences. Our contribution in this regard is the product of a many-voiced international team,” explains Institute Director Ralf Michaels.

Institute researchers have initiated a series of academic gatherings on the legal consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, launched projects and published papers. The current overview illustrates the range of subjects covered.

News, lectures, and publications

Elena Dubovitskaya
Senior Research Fellow

Elena Dubovitskaya, Das Krisengesetz als Ideengrube für die künftige virtuelle Hauptversammlung, Neue Zeitschrift für Gesellschaftsrecht 2020, 647–653.
Elena Dubovitskaya, The COVID-19 Corporate Law Act in Germany: New regulations in company law, La Ley mercantil 2020, Nr. 70.

Elena Dubovitskaya, What Can We Learn From the Fully Virtual Shareholder Meetings That Have Taken Place During the Corona Pandemic? Latest Thinking, 27.11.2020

Ruth Effinowicz

Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Centre of Expertise on Japan

Harald Baum
Affiliate, former Head of the Centre of Expertise on Japan

Ruth Effinowicz, Harald Baum (eds.), Reaktionen auf Corona im japanischen und deutschen Recht. Beiträge zur virtuellen Tagung am 19. und 20. August 2020 in Hamburg 2020, IV + 130 pp.

Information on the event and videos of the lectures

Mateusz Grochowski

Senior Research Fellow

Ewa Rott-Pietrzyk, Fryderyk Zoll, Dariusz Szostek, Mateusz Grochowski, Czynności notarialne online – podstawy de lege lata i uwagi de lege ferenda, Forum Prawnicze 4 (2020), 38–56.
Mateusz Grochowski, Towards a Renaissance of Price Control in Contract Law? Preliminary Observations on COVID-19 and Price Regulation on Consumer Market, in: Ewoud Hondius, Marta Santos Silva, Andrea Nicolussi, Pablo Salvador Coderch, Christiane Wendehorst, Fryderyk Zoll (eds.), Coronavirus and the Law in Europe, Intersentia, Cambridge 2021, 891–909.

Matteusz Grochowski: Covid-19 Litigation
Participation in the project Fundamental Rights In Courts and Regulation (FRICoRe)

Ben Gerrit Köhler

Senior Research Fellow

Ben Gerrit Köhler, Thomas John, Rishi Gulati: COVID-19, International organisations and force majeure
Virtual lecture on 02.04.2020

Ben Köhler, Global sales law in a global pandemic: The CISG as the applicable law to the EU-AstraZeneca Advance Purchase Agreement?, Conflict of Laws, 05.02.2021

Ralf Michaels
Institute Director

Ralf Michaels, Learning from Corona?, 2020,, 04/07/2020.
Ralf Michaels, Rechtliches Wissen in der Krise, Kritische Justiz 53 (2020), 375–386.

Ralf Michaels, Rechtliches Wissen in der Krise – Eine Zeitkapsel, in: Gregor Bachmann, Stefan Grundmann, Anja Mengel, Kaspar Krolop (eds.), Festschrift für Christine Windbichler zum 70. Geburtstag, De Gruyter, Berlin 2020, 97–118.
Ralf Michaels, Notarization from abroad in times of travel restrictions, 2020,, 05/22/2020.


Jakob Olbing
Research Associate

Ralf Michaels, Jakob Olbing, Corona and Private International Law: A Regularly Updated Repository of Writings, Cases and Developments, 2020,, 12/14/2020.

Jan Peter Schmidt
Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Centre for the Application of Foreign Law

Conversation with Jan Peter Schmidt about his post-doctoral presentation at the University of Regensburg on 30.07.2020: Controversy on the Legal Consequences of the COVID-19 Crisis

Jan Peter Schmidt: Auswirkungen der COVID-19-Krise auf das Vertragsrecht
Virtual lecture at the online annual conference of the Deutsch-Brasilianische Juristenvereinigung e.V. on 21.11.2020

Jan Peter Schmidt: Estate Planning in Times of COVID-19
Virtual lecture at the online world conference of the International Society of Family Law: „Family Law and Crisis – Going Through Pandemics“, 26.-28.08.2020

Philipp Scholz
Senior Research Fellow

Philipp Scholz, Das Verhältnis von Entschädigung und Störung der Geschäftsgrundlage, Neue Juristische Wochenschrift 2020, 2209–2213.
Jacqueline Päßler, Philipp Scholz, Zur Privilegierung von Mietstundungen und Mietzahlungen nach dem COVInsAG, Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftsrecht 2020, 1633–1644.

Denise Wiedemann
Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Centre of Expertise on Latin America

Denise Wiedemann, Kollisionsrechtliche Folgeprobleme der Stellvertreterehe, Zeitschrift für Standesamtswesen 2021, Heft 2 (forthcoming)

Guest lectures

Matthias Lehmann: COVID-19 und IPR/IZPR
Virtual lecture on 02.06.2020 in the context of the event series "Current Research in Private International Law"

Somoud Damiri, Bassam Shahatit: COVID-19: implications for the application of family law in MENA countries
Virtual panel discussion on 01.07.2020 in the context of the event series „Afternoon Talks on Islamic Law“
Video of talk by Somoud Damiri
Video of talk by Bassam Shahatit

Marc-Philippe Weller: Nationalismus, Territorialismus und Unilateralismus: Pandemiebewältigung durch IPR?
Virtual lecture on 01.12.2020 in the context of the event series "Current Research in Private International Law"

Other Interesting Articles

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