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DFG Funds New Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies Devoted to Role of International Law in Global Change

Alliance of Researchers at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Universität Potsdam, and Freie Universität Berlin

№ 436/2014 from Dec 17, 2014

Researchers at Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (HU), and Universität Potsdam have joined forces in a new DFG-funded Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies devoted to "The International Rule of Law – Rise or Decline?" The project is one of five new Humanities Centres for Advanced Studies being funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), initially until 2019.

Some recent developments make the idea of a value-oriented juridification of international relationships seem questionable. It is not only individual international crises, such as the Ukraine crisis or maritime territorial disputes in East and Southeast Asia, that indicate a greater need for considering the world in geopolitical influence areas. Attempts by governments to address pressing global issues through international legislation encounter difficulties, for example, in the area of climate protection or the world trading system. While on the one hand, the international legal discourse continues to be dominated by substituting thinking in categories of national sovereignty with responsibility to the world community, there are increasingly phenomena that suggest a weakening of this role. Is it possible under these conditions to continue to exercise a value-based juridification of international relations, or will this development be replaced by processes of reformalization or even de-juridification processes? Or are we currently merely observing delays in achieving a long-term value-oriented international legal system?

The new Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies aims to investigate discernible processes of change of international law and its conditions. The researchers will employ an interdisciplinary approach and evaluate the normative significance. This requires the inclusion of perspectives from political science, in particular the theory and practice of international relations. The researchers aim to consider differences in perception, on the one hand, and on the other hand, the relative importance of individual tendencies with regard to the future of international law as a central normative authority of international relations.

The Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies

The Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies consists of the three international law experts who submitted the proposal, Prof. Dr. Heike Krieger, Prof. Dr. Georg Nolte (HU), and Prof. Dr. Andreas Zimmermann (Universität Potsdam), and the three participating political scientists, Prof. Dr. Markus Jachtenfuchs (Hertie School of Governance), Prof. Dr. Andrea Liese (Universität Potsdam), and Prof. Dr. Michael Zürn (Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin). In addition, there are Senior Fellows, Junior Fellows, a Practitioner-in-Residence, and other staff members. The Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies is located at the Law Faculty of Humboldt-Universität.

Further Information

Prof. Dr. Georg Nolte, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Spokesperson for the Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies, Tel.: +49 30 2093-3349, Email: