Research at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law
The Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law systematically researches private and commercial law as well as international private law from a transnational perspective, and engages with the fundamental methodical questions that arise from this research. In its fields of research, the Institute seeks to help further the development of law and meet the challenges that accompany the globalisation of living conditions and the internationalisation of the law.
Starting from an analysis of the differences and commonalities among legal systems in Europe and around the world, the Institute studies the interrelationships among private rule-formation, national legal systems, supranational law and intergovernmental agreements. The Institute’s research also serves to establish foundations for international understanding of law and develop rules and instruments to better coordinate the application of national legal systems to cross-border matters.
The Institute’s Research Areas
Comparative law and foreign private law are the core topics of academic work undertaken at the Institute. The methodological approaches of international comparative law date back to the time of the Institute’s founding, and they remain a fundamental building block of Institute research. Institute scholars aim to determine the differences and similarities among the world’s legal systems. The resulting findings become the basis for proposals fostering a further development of the law. Many research projects also focus on interpreting the historical foundations of modern civil law.
The Institute is dedicated to performing foundational research and has consequently always addressed the fundamental methodological questions of (private) law. In doing so, it is essential that the approaches and insights of related disciplines such as legal history, legal theory, legal sociology and law and economics be integrated into the research.
Questions concerning international legal jurisdiction, cross-border cooperation among courts and judicial authorities, the applicability of foreign legal norms, and the legal force of national court decisions abroad form the foundation of this research area.
Commercial, company and capital market law is another of the Institute’s main research areas. Foundational and current issues are examined critically on a broad comparative basis and placed in a wider historical and international context. The Institute also develops regulatory proposals for reforms at the national, European and international levels as appropriate.
The Institute aims to offer critical input on developments in European private law from a scholarly perspective. It is committed to providing scholarly guidance through the maze of discourses and regulations, analysing and systematising the puzzle pieces of the piecemeal regulations of European private law, and developing new proposals for solutions.