All Research Projects

  1. Criminal Law, Research project, Ongoing, Contemporary Challenges

    Triage in Pan­dem­ics: Leg­al and Eth­ic­al Per­spect­ives

    Project Lead: Ralf Poscher, Tatjana Hörnle, Prof. Dr. Stefan Huster (Ruhr University Bochum)

    During the Covid-19 pandemic, numerous countries have experienced a scarcity of life-saving resources, including equipment (i.e., ventilators) and free space in intensive care units. Such situations raise difficult ethical and legal questions. Which criteria should be applied to select the patients who are to receive these scarce resources? Should medical prospects of success play a role in such …

  2. Criminology, Ongoing

    The 360º Vir­tu­al Scen­ario Meth­od

    Project Lead: Prof. dr. dr. Jean-Louis van Gelder, Sheina Herman, Dr. Tim Barnum

    The 360º Virtual Scenario research program aims to remedy some of the defects of the traditional scenario (or “vignette”) method by employing immersive 360º video. This virtual reality (VR) method is based on the assumption that the commonly used written scenarios are unlikely to capture the more visceral and emotional aspects involved in real-world offending, which commonly occurs during “hot” a…

  3. Criminology, Ongoing

    Vir­tu­al Burg­lary Pro­ject

    Project Lead: Gunda Wössner, Jean-Louis van Gelder, Dominik Gerstner

    The Virtual Burglary Project uses virtual reality (VR) versions of residential neighborhoods to study the behavior of burglars. Convicted burglars are invited to explore a neighborhood, select a target to burglarize, and commit a burglary in VR and to go about it just as they would in the real world. The VR system tracks all their behavior in real time, such as where they look, how they walk arou…

  4. Criminal Law, Ongoing, The Role of Criminal Law in Fragmented Societies

    Crim­in­al Law in Frag­men­ted So­ci­et­ies

    Project Lead: Tatjana Hörnle

    Sociologists and cultural sociologists describe increasingly plural, multicultural, and fragmented societies. Migration is one of the factors that contribute to these phenomena. The goal of the project is to describe and evaluate the influence of the aforementioned societal developments on substantive criminal law: the prohibitions in criminal statutes, assessments of criminal wrongdoing, and sen…

  5. Criminal Law, Ongoing, Sexual Autonomy and Sexual Offenses

    §§ 174-182 Ger­man Crim­in­al Code (Of­fenses Against Sexu­al Self-De­term­in­a­tion)

    Project Lead: Tatjana Hörnle

    In the decade since 2010, the section on sexual offenses in the German Criminal Code has undergone multiple changes. These developments are traced for the most comprehensive commentary to the German Criminal Code, the “Leipziger Kommentar StGB”. The Commentary collects and analyzes policy discussions surrounding the amendments to the law, addresses questions of interpretation that arise for new o…

  6. Criminal Law, Research project, Completed, Contemporary Challenges

    Triage in Pan­dem­ics: A Sur­vey

    Project Lead: Tatjana Hörnle, Prof. Dr. Elisa Hoven

    Which kind of criteria do citizens accept if the Corona crisis forces doctors to apply triage? Prof. Elisa Hoven, University of Leipzig, with support by the Max Planck Institute, has organized a survey. You can find the results here.

  7. Criminal Law, Ongoing, Sexual Autonomy and Sexual Offenses

    Sexu­al As­sault Law: Law Re­form in a Com­par­at­ive Per­spect­ive

    Project Lead: Tatjana Hörnle, Prof. Dr. Tatjana Hörnle, Prof. Manuel Cancio Meliá, Prof. Michelle Madden Dempsey, Prof. Stuart Green, Prof. Jonathan Herring, Prof. Claes Lernestedt, Prof. Kai Lindenberg, Prof. Erin E. Murphy, Dr. Nora Scheidegger, Prof. Stephen Schulhofer

    Traditional criminal laws defined sexual assault as a crime that required violence or threats of violence. Paradigms have shifted: present-day law reforms in various countries focus on lack of consent. There are, however, different approaches regarding how to transform this notion into offense definitions. The purpose of the project is to assess whether the new generation of criminal prohibitions…

  8. Criminology, Research project, Ongoing

    CRI­ME­TIME/Short-Term Mind­sets and Crime

    Project Lead: Prof. dr. dr. Jean-Louis van Gelder

    Why are some people more likely to commit crime than others? Answers to this question, which is at the heart of criminology, can be grouped into two broad views. On the one hand, dispositional perspectives argue that stable factors within the individual, such as lack of self-control, lie at the roots of criminal conduct. Sociogenic perspectives, on the other hand, put the locus of study outside t…

  9. Public Law, Ongoing, Trends: Internationalization, Digitalization, Fragmentation


    Project Lead: Prof. Dr. Ralf Poscher Ralf Poscher, Sabrina Ellebrecht (Centre for Security and Society), Prof. Dr. Stefan Jarolimek (Deutsche Hochschule der Polizei), Prof. Dr. Stefan Kaufmann (Universität Freiburg)

    Considering Germany’s diversifying society, the question arises whether its police forces can contribute to an open and plural society and how they should be organized. This joint research project involves three leading public security institutions: the Centre for Security and Society at the University of Freiburg; the Deutsche Hochschule der Polizei; and the Department of Public Law at the Max P…

  10. Public Law, Ongoing, Challenges: Fundamental Rights, Rule of Law, Democracy

    Hand­book of Con­sti­tu­tion­al Law

    Project Lead: Prof. Dr. Ralf Poscher, Prof. Dr. Matthias Herdegen, Prof. Dr. Johannes Masing, Prof. Dr. Klaus Ferdinand Gärditz

    The Handbook of Constitutional Law is co-authored by 24 German professors, and supported by 15 international academics from Europe, North America, Africa, and Asia. Edited by Professors Herdegen, Masing, Poscher, and Gärditz, the Handbook’s main purpose is to foster transnational constitutional dialogue. It will appear in a German and English version and thus be the first comprehensive academic p…

  11. Criminology, Research project, Departmental project, Completed

    Crim­in­al Vic­tim­iz­a­tion and Per­cep­tions of Crime and In­sec­ur­it­ies in Cross-Coun­try Per­spect­ive

    Project Lead: Dietrich Oberwittler, Dina Hummelsheim-Doss

    The research project is designed to analyze the European Crime and Safety Survey 2005 (EUICS) and a number of other European representative surveys. Based on the data obtained from these analyses, it is the intention of the project to provide a cross-country empirical analysis of perceptions, attitudes and experiences of crime.

  12. Criminology, Research project, Departmental project, Completed

    Po­lice and Ad­oles­cents in Multi-Eth­nic So­ci­et­ies (POL­IS)

    Project Lead: Prof. Dr. Sebastian Roché, Dietrich Oberwittler, Hans-Jörg Albrecht

    From the 1980s onwards, France has faced a series of violent riots in urban agglomerations, culminating in the autumn 2005 riots which continued for several weeks and spread to most of France’s major cities. As in the case of earlier riots in Great Britain, this drew broad attention across Europe and provoked the question of whether riots could also be expected in other countries. In both Germany…

  13. Criminal Law (Prof. Sieber), Dissertation, Individual research project, Completed

    Re­spons­ib­il­ity and Sanc­tion­ing of Cor­por­a­tions: The Role of Com­pli­ance Meas­ures

    Project Lead: Marc Engelhart

    Cases such as the bribery scandal at Siemens pose the question of the sanctioning of corporations and the necessity of in-house measures for the prevention of criminal activity. This study analyzes the German and US-American law of corporate sanctions, paying special attention to new forms of "regulated self-regulation" (especially the so-called compliance measures). Proposals for the reform of t…

  14. Criminology, Research project, Individual research project, Completed

    Hon­our Killings in Ger­many, 1996-2005

    Project Lead: Dietrich Oberwittler

    So-called ‘honour killings’ have received more and more attention in recent years against the backdrop of discussions about the integration of migrants particularly from Islamic countries. Honour killings are domestic homicides of (mainly) females who are perceived by the offender(s) as violating behavioral norms, especially sexual chastity and submission under patriarchal rule. This study repres…

  15. Criminology, Research project, Departmental project, Completed

    Crime, dis­order, and so­cial cap­it­al in urb­an neigh­bor­hoods: per­cep­tions and so­cial pro­cesses

    Project Lead: Dietrich Oberwittler

    The major goal of this study is to advance the understanding of structural conditions and social processes in relation to crime problems in urban neighborhoods. Residents’ subjective perceptions of disorder and crime as well as collective social capital are key mechanisms in the complex social processes shaping the development of neighborhoods. The core of the study is a large community survey of…

  16. Criminology, Research project, Departmental project, Completed

    Fa­mili­al Hom­icide-Sui­cide in European Coun­tries / The European Hom­icide-Sui­cide Study (EH­SS)

    Project Lead: Dietrich Oberwittler

    Homicides followed by the suicide of the perpetrator (hereafter HS) are a rare yet very serious form of interpersonal violence which occurs mainly in partnerships and families. There has been very little systematic research on HS. The aim of the study is to collect total samples of HS in Germany and other European countries (Netherlands, Finland, Spain, Poland, England & Wales, Switzerland) for a…

  17. Criminal Law (Prof. Sieber), Research project, Institute project, Completed

    Gen­er­al Leg­al Prin­ciples of In­ter­na­tion­al Crim­in­al Law on the Crim­in­al Li­ab­il­ity of Lead­ers of Crim­in­al Groups and Net­works

    Project Lead: Jan-Michael Simon, Ulrich Sieber, Hans-Georg Koch

    The leaders of organized offender groups and networks usually act in the background, avoiding any direct participation in criminal activities. This project examines how 43 legal systems handle the accountability and evidentiary problems that typically arise in such cases. In the process, new methodological approaches to comparative criminal law are tested. The goal is to support the development i…

  18. Criminal Law (Prof. Sieber), Completed

    Re­think­ing Money Laun­der­ing and Fin­an­cial In­vest­ig­a­tions

    Project Lead: Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Ulrich Sieber, Dr. Benjamin Vogel LL.M., Dr. Jean-Baptiste Maillart

    While Anti-Money Laundering instruments are ever increasing in scope and complexity, policymakers have often lost sight of the objectives pursued. As a consequence, legislation is, in many cases, shaped by unrealistic political expectations and inconsistent design. Against this backdrop, this book explains key deficiencies of existing law and develops policy proposals to enhance both effectivenes…

  19. Criminal Law (Prof. Sieber), Research project, Institute project, Completed

    Crim­in­al Law in Re­ac­tion to State Crime

    Project Lead: Ulrich Sieber, Albin Eser, Jörg Arnold

    This project studies the functions and limits of criminal law in the processes of replacing pre-democratic political systems and of coming to terms with the wrongdoing of the old system in transitional or transformation societies. In the final analysis, there is no "best way" of employing the criminal law to deal with the past following political system change. Each individual country’s approach …

  20. Criminology, Criminal Law (Prof. Sieber), Research project, Institute project, Completed

    Stra­frecht­s­re­for­men in Mexiko

    Project Lead: Jan-Michael Simon, Hans-Jörg Albrecht, Alvaro Vizcainos, Dr. Gerardo Laveaga, Ulrich Sieber

    Project description only available in German.