This project on the development of criminal policy and criminal law in the countries of the former Soviet Union is closely connected to the Institute’s long-running German-Soviet colloquia on criminal law and criminology, as well as numerous national and international meetings that have occurred in the years since the end of the Cold War. It is hoped that the current project will not only explain the transition of these countries to a legal system based on the rule of law, but also strengthen the ties and partnerships that have been forged over the last few decades and assist in the establishment of an even broader research network in the region.

Pro­ject de­scrip­tion:

With the col­lapse of the So­viet Uni­on, its vari­ous suc­cessor states have been ex­posed to a mul­ti­tude of chal­lenges. At the fore­front have been the world­wide changes brought about by glob­al­iz­a­tion and mod­ern­iz­a­tion which, while they en­tail new op­por­tun­it­ies, also en­tail an ar­ray of new risks. These risks in­clude vari­ous forms of cross-bor­der crime, such as drug and hu­man traf­fick­ing, as well as cor­rup­tion, hate crime, vi­ol­ence, and ter­ror­ism. In ad­di­tion, the polit­ic­al and so­cial con­di­tions in these coun­tries in trans­ition – par­tic­u­larly those as­so­ci­ated with the dis­mant­ling of au­thor­it­ari­an polit­ic­al sys­tems and planned eco­nom­ies – have proven fer­tile ground for the growth of white-col­lar crime. In­ter­est­ingly, des­pite a com­mon so­cio-cul­tur­al past, the coun­tries that have emerged after the fall of the So­viet Uni­on dis­play con­sid­er­able dif­fer­ences in the way crimes and the crim­in­al law are handled. This spec­trum runs the gamut from the Balt­ic States which have joined the EU, to Be­larus where the death pen­alty is still ap­plied, through to cer­tain areas of the Cau­cas­us where vestiges of vi­ol­ent con­flict re­main.

In re­cent years, aca­dem­ic co­oper­a­tion with in­sti­tu­tions in the re­gion has greatly in­tens­i­fied. From 2010 on­wards, sev­er­al crim­in­o­lo­gic­al and crim­in­al law con­fer­ences have oc­curred in Ukraine and Geor­gia; these have of­ten been or­gan­ized by the Max Planck In­sti­tute (MPI) in close co­oper­a­tion with the Ger­man Found­a­tion for In­ter­na­tion­al Leg­al Co­oper­a­tion (IRZ). In ad­di­tion, re­search­ers from the MPI have act­ively pre­pared meet­ings with aca­dem­ic coun­ter­parts in Rus­sia; an ex­ample be­ing the "Kudriavtzev Read­ings," in which both Prof. Hans-Jörg Al­brecht and Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich have thus far par­ti­cip­ated. The Kudriavtzev Read­ings are or­gan­ized by the Rus­si­an Academy of Sci­ences in memory of Prof. Kudriavtzev, who, three dec­ades ago, first es­tab­lished con­tact with the MPI. Prof. Hans-Jörg Al­brecht is also a reg­u­lar guest at the St. Peters­burg In­ter­na­tion­al Club of Crim­in­o­logy, where sem­inars are held on trans­ition­al is­sues such as cor­rup­tion, white-col­lar crime, money laun­der­ing, and or­gan­ized crime.

In Oc­to­ber 2010, a two-day con­fer­ence at the Uni­versity of Geor­gia was or­gan­ized by the MPI (with sup­port from the IRZ). This con­fer­ence co­in­cided with the in­tro­duc­tion of the new Geor­gi­an Crim­in­al Pro­ced­ure Code and dis­cussed leg­al re­forms in the con­flict-laden area con­cern­ing the pro­vi­sion of se­cur­ity and the main­ten­ance of per­son­al freedoms. Many of the con­fer­ence’s par­ti­cipants had pre­vi­ously spent time at the MPI, either as vis­it­ing re­search­ers or doc­tor­al stu­dents. Like­wise, in Oc­to­ber 2011, a Trans-Caucasi­an Crim­in­o­logy Sym­posi­um on crime pre­ven­tion in coun­tries in trans­ition was held in co­oper­a­tion with the Grigol Robakidze Uni­versity. In the same month, an in­ter­na­tion­al con­fer­ence in Tb­il­isi was de­voted to ad­dress­ing is­sues of ju­ven­ile justice and youth crime in Geor­gia. This con­fer­ence was again or­gan­ized by the MPI, in co­oper­a­tion with the Geor­gi­an Amer­ic­an Uni­versity, the Open So­ci­ety Geor­gia Found­a­tion, and the IRZ.

A fur­ther con­fer­ence was con­duc­ted in Ukraine in Septem­ber 2011. Held at the Odessa State Uni­versity, this four-day dis­cus­sion on cur­rent is­sues of crim­in­al law and pro­ced­ure (in­clud­ing white-col­lar crime and ter­ror­ism) brought to­geth­er ex­perts from Mol­dova, Ukraine, Rus­sia, and Ger­many. The con­fer­ence garnered much in­terest in the loc­al me­dia, and the pro­ceed­ings were doc­u­mented in both Rus­si­an and Ger­man. In May 2012, the Caucasi­an Re­search Centre for Crime Pre­ven­tion and Com­par­at­ive Crim­in­o­logy was es­tab­lished at Grigol Robakidze Uni­versity in Tb­il­isi; a two-day con­fer­ence also took place to com­mem­or­ate the 20th An­niversary of the rees­tab­lish­ment of dip­lo­mat­ic ties between Geor­gia and Ger­many.


In re­cent years, the De­part­ment of Crim­in­o­logy at the Max Planck In­sti­tute has re­vived and in­tens­i­fied sci­entif­ic co­oper­a­tion with nu­mer­ous in­sti­tu­tions in coun­tries from the former So­viet Uni­on (es­pe­cially Ukraine and the coun­tries of the South Cau­cas­us). Cur­rently, con­tacts are also be­ing de­veloped with the Kabardino-Balkari­an State Uni­versity in Nal­chik (North Cau­cas­us) and the Tajik State Uni­versity in Dush­anbe (Tajikistan). Sci­entif­ic co­oper­a­tion gen­er­ally takes the form of reg­u­lar meet­ings and joint sem­inars. The or­gan­iz­a­tion of sum­mer schools also plays an im­port­ant role, such as the 2013 sum­mer school on "Leg­al as­pects of vi­ol­ence and con­flict pre­ven­tion" in Tb­il­isi (Geor­gia) which was con­duc­ted as part of the Ger­man Aca­dem­ic Ex­change Ser­vice (DAAD) pro­gram "Con­flict Pre­ven­tion in the South Cau­cas­us Re­gion, Cent­ral Asia and Mol­dova" (par­ti­cipants from eight coun­tries took part). In ad­di­tion to the DAAD, the For­eign Of­fice of Ger­many, the Ger­man Found­a­tion for In­ter­na­tion­al Leg­al Co­oper­a­tion (IRZ) and the Deutsche Gesell­schaft für In­ter­na­tionale Zusammen­arbeit (GIZ) have all sup­por­ted co­oper­a­tion pro­jects. Ger­man em­bassies in the re­gion are also closely in­volved in the over­arch­ing re­search pro­ject.

f.l.t.r.: Prof. Al­brecht (MPI) | Prof. Ma­gheramov (Rect­or Baku State Uni­versity)
[Signing the Framework Agreement on Scientific Cooperation]

Agree­ments have been signed with sev­er­al re­gion­al uni­versit­ies and re­search in­sti­tu­tions. For in­stance, in May 2012, Prof. Al­brecht signed the Agree­ment on Sci­entif­ic Co­oper­a­tion with the Grigol Robakidze Uni­versity in Tb­il­isi, Geor­gia. In Septem­ber 2013, Prof. Al­brecht and Prof. Strelt­sov (Vice-Rect­or of the State Uni­versity of Odessa) formed a frame­work agree­ment for bet­ter sci­entif­ic co­oper­a­tion between the Na­tion­al Academy of Leg­al Sci­ences of Ukraine and the Max Planck In­sti­tute. In the same month, the ground­work for a part­ner­ship agree­ment between the MPI and the Law Fac­ulty of Yerevan State Uni­versity was laid; the agree­ment came in­to force in Novem­ber 2014 and in­cludes sup­port­ing the de­vel­op­ment and im­ple­ment­a­tion of a new pro­gram at the Law Fac­ulty in Baku with a fo­cus on "Pre­ven­tion and con­trol of dan­ger­ous forms of transna­tion­al crime".

f.l.t.r.: Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich (MPI) | Dr. Thorgeis­dót­tir (Vice Pres­id­ent Venice Com­mis­sion, Pres­id­ent European Wo­men Law­yers' As­so­ci­ation, Pro­fess­or Fac­ulty of Law, Bi­fröst Uni­versity, Ice­land)
[4th Black Sea Regional Conference on the Emerging Challenges to the Right to Privacy ● 5./6.7.2014, premises of the Constitutional Court in Batumi]

The MPI also as­sisted in es­tab­lish­ing the Caucasi­an Re­search Centre for Crime Pre­ven­tion and Com­par­at­ive Crim­in­o­logy at Grigol Robakidze Uni­versity in May 2012. The Centre pub­lishes a sci­entif­ic journ­al on cur­rent is­sues of crim­in­o­logy and crim­in­al justice: the first such journ­al to do so in the re­gion. In 2012, Dr. Eliko Cik­lauri-Lam­mich re­ceived fund­ing from the DAAD to com­plete a short teach­ing stay of 3 months at the Centre, where she offered courses on crim­in­al law and crim­in­o­logy for stu­dents of Grigol Robakidze Uni­versity.


In 2012-2013, Prof. Al­brecht was in a com­mis­sion set up by the European Uni­on to ne­go­ti­ate with the then rul­ing gov­ern­ment of Ukraine for the re­lease of the coun­try’s former prime min­is­ter, Yulia Ty­moshen­ko. The com­mis­sion was headed by the re­tired Pres­id­ent of Po­land, Al­ex­an­dr Kwaśniewski, and the former Pres­id­ent of the European Par­lia­ment, Pat Cox.

Dr. Eliko Cik­lauri-Lam­mich with the EU ne­go­ti­at­ing group in Kiev

f.l.t.r.: Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich (MPI) | Prof. Al­brecht (MPI) | T. Kaldani (Dir­ect­or Geor­gi­an Data Pro­tec­tion Of­fice | N. Sar­ish­wili (Deputy)
[Visit to the Georgian Data Protection Office]

In 2014, Prof. Al­brecht (on be­half of the GIZ) began provid­ing ad­vice to the Geor­gi­an Par­lia­ment con­cern­ing the re­form of the coun­try’s se­cur­ity and crim­in­al pro­ced­ur­al law in the field of cov­ert in­vest­ig­at­ive meas­ures, in par­tic­u­lar per­tain­ing to the in­ter­cep­tion of tele­com­mu­nic­a­tions data. In this con­text, meet­ings and roundtables were car­ried out in co­oper­a­tion with the Geor­gi­an Min­is­tries of Justice and Home Af­fairs and vari­ous non-gov­ern­ment­al or­gan­iz­a­tions in Tb­il­isi and Ba­tumi.

Is­sues re­lat­ing to the in­ter­cep­tion and mon­it­or­ing of com­mu­nic­a­tions have also been con­tro­ver­sial in Geor­gia and the Geor­gi­an Data Pro­tec­tion Of­fice has been in­volved in dis­cus­sions on tele­com­mu­nic­a­tions sur­veil­lance. On the oc­ca­sion of a vis­it to the Of­fice, the re­la­tion­ship between tele­com­mu­nic­a­tions sur­veil­lance and data pro­tec­tion was dis­cussed from a com­par­at­ive per­spect­ive. 

Roundtable in June 2015 or­gan­ized at the be­hest of the Gen­er­al Pro­sec­utor of Geor­gia, Giorgi Ba­dashvili (front left), with Prof. Al­brecht and Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich.

Prof. Al­brecht ex­changed ideas with lead­ing mem­bers of the Geor­gi­an pro­sec­utor’s of­fice on com­bat­ing transna­tion­al ter­ror­ism, both world­wide and in Ger­many.

Meet­ing at the Robakidze Uni­versity in Tb­il­isi (17/12/2015) with the Uni­versity’s Dean Prof. Mamuka Thawkhelidze (right), Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich (cen­ter) and Prof. Al­brecht (left).
Prof. Al­brecht spoke on the theme "New de­vel­op­ments in the fight against in­ter­na­tion­al ter­ror­ism" and Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich ad­dressed the is­sue of re­turn­ing fight­ers.

At the in­vit­a­tion of the Su­preme Court of Geor­gia, on 12/18/2015 Prof. Al­brecht and Dr. Cik­lauri-Lam­mich took part in a dis­cus­sion of the IRZ meet­ing that fo­cused on "Ana­lys­is of le­gis­la­tion." They held talks on a num­ber of dif­fer­ent is­sues, in­clud­ing hearsay (in­dir­ect evid­ence) and new is­sues in the Geor­gi­an Crim­in­al Pro­ced­ure Code.

On 20/12/2015, Prof. Al­brecht held a talk be­fore the Hu­man Rights Com­mit­tee of the Geor­gi­an Par­lia­ment on com­par­at­ive as­pects of anti-tor­ture laws.

f.l.t.r.: Dr. Ciklauri-Lammich (MPI) | Prof. Albrecht (MPI) | Dr. Asbrock, Chief Justice of the Regional Court (retir.) | Dr. Gamkrelidze, Director IRZ Georg. | Prof. Laliashvili | Dr. Boetticher, Justice of the Federal Court of Justice (retir.)


Dr. Eliko Cik­lauri-Lam­mich (left) re­ceived her hon­or­ary doc­tor­ate from the Robakidze Uni­versity (Geor­gia) in 2012; she is a mem­ber of the Uni­versity’s Sci­entif­ic Coun­cil and, since 2015, a ten­ured as­so­ci­ate pro­fess­or.



Aca­dem­ic Di­gest (Law) – Grigol Robakidze Uni­versity, Tb­il­isi/Geor­gia

Events // In­ter­na­tion­al con­fer­ences:

Stra­frecht­s­re­for­men in ein­i­gen Ländern der ehem­a­li­gen Sowje­tunion und die Ergeb­n­isse nach 25 Jahren Un­ab­hängigkeit

Recht­liche Heraus­for­der­ungen mo­d­ern­er Tech­no­lo­gi­en – die Bal­ance zwis­chen Sich­er­heit und Freiheit
In­ter­na­tionale Ta­gung in Tb­ilis­si/Geor­gi­en
24.05. bis 26.05.2017

Ter­ror­ism, Le­gis­la­tion and Ju­di­cial Prac­tices: New Ap­proaches in Counter-Ter­ror­ism Policies – Con­fer­ence re­gard­ing the 35 years of part­ner­ship –
In­ter­na­tion­al con­fer­ence in Tb­il­isi/Geor­gia
11/02 to 11/04/2016

Rad­ic­al­iz­a­tion, Re­cruit­ment and "For­eign Fight­ers" – Re­spond­ing to New Ter­ror­ist Phe­nomen­on
Joint Sem­in­ar with Bahçeşe­hir Uni­versity in Istan­bul/Tur­key
04/01 to 04/02/2016

Über­gänge in der Ukraine – Krim­in­al­politik und Stra­frecht­liche Tenden­zen
Work­shop in Zusammen­arbeit mit der WOG (West-Ost Gesell­schaft Süd­baden)

In­ter­na­tion­al Con­fer­ence and Cel­eb­ra­tion of the 80th An­niversary of Yerevan State Uni­versity’s Fac­ulty of Law/Ar­menia
– Sign­ing of an agree­ment to strengthen aca­dem­ic ties and co­oper­a­tion (09/24) –
09/22 to 09/26/2013

Vi­ol­ence and Con­flict Pre­ven­tion: Leg­al As­pects
Sum­mer School and In­ter­na­tion­al Con­fer­ence in Tb­il­isi/Geor­gia
05/20 to 05/25/2013

Vor­trag­s­re­ise und Forschungs­ge­spräche in Aserbaid­schan
Wis­senschaft­lich­er Aufenthalt an der Staat­lichen Uni­versität Baku
03.10. bis 05.10.2012

Re­for­men im Stra­frecht und im Straf­prozess­recht der drei Länder des Südkaukas­us: Ar­meni­en, Aserbaid­schan und Geor­gi­en
Re­gionale Kon­fer­enz in Tb­ilis­si/Geor­gi­en
17.05. bis 18.05.2012

Ju­ven­ile Justice Re­form in Geor­gia: Me­di­ation and Res­tor­a­tion
In­ter­na­tion­al con­fer­ence in Tb­il­isi/Geor­gia

Ak­tuelle Fra­gen des Straf- und Straf­prozess­rechts
In­ter­na­tionale Kon­fer­enz in Odessa/Ukraine
05.09. bis 08.09.2011

Krim­in­o­lo­gis­che Prob­leme der Krimin­al­itäts­bekäm­p­fung in den Ländern des Um­bruchs
In­ter­na­tionale Ta­gung in Tb­ilis­si/Geor­gi­en
28.10. bis 29.10.2010

Stra­frecht­liche Re­for­men im Span­nungs­feld zwis­chen Sich­er­heit und per­sön­lich­er Freiheit
In­ter­na­tionale Ta­gung in Tb­ilis­si/Geor­gi­en
11.10. bis 12.10.2010

Prof. Al­brecht speak­ing at the "Kudriavtzev Read­ings" in Mo­scow
– The MPI main­tains strong aca­dem­ic con­tacts with re­search cen­ters in the Rus­si­an Fed­er­a­tion –
05/12 to 05/13/2010

Events // Lec­tures at the Max Planck In­sti­tute in Freiburg:

Sen­ten­cing Policy and Prac­tices in Ger­many and Mon­go­lia
09/12 to 09/16/2016

Ger­man-Mon­go­li­an Sem­in­ar on Cur­rent Trends in Crim­in­al Pun­ish­ment
10/19 to 10/22/2015

The In­flu­ences of European Crim­in­al Law on Geor­gi­an Crim­in­al Law
Lec­turer: Prof. Dr. Bachana Jishkari­ani, LL.M. (Geor­gia); in­tern­al Wed­nes­day lec­tures

Res­ults of Crim­in­al­iz­a­tion and Vic­tim­iz­a­tion Sur­vey in Geor­gia 2009–2013
Lec­turer: Prof. Dr. Georgi Glonti (Geor­gia)

Ger­man-Mon­go­li­an Sem­in­ar on Cur­rent Is­sues in Crim­in­al Law and Crim­in­o­logy
06/10 to 06/14/2013

Crime and Con­fid­ence in Po­lice in Ar­menia
Lec­turer: Dr. Anna Mar­gary­an (Yerevan/Ar­menia); in­tern­al Wed­nes­day lec­tures

Crime and Se­cur­ity Sur­vey – Geor­gia 2010-2012
Lec­turer: Prof. Dr. Georgi Glonti (Tb­il­isi/Geor­gia); in­tern­al Wed­nes­day lec­tures

Vis­it­ors from Ar­menia

Plea Bar­gain­ing in Geor­gia
Lec­turer: Prof. Nino Gve­n­et­adze (Geor­gia); in­tern­al Wed­nes­day lec­tures

Crime Pre­ven­tion and Com­munity Ther­apy
Lec­turer: Prof. Dr. Georgi Glonti (Geor­gia); in­tern­al Wed­nes­day lec­tures