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 Planck Institute for the Study of Crime, Security and Law. Linking multiple perspectives and competencies on police services creates a highly interdisciplinary research orientation. Legal scholars, sociologists, communication scientists and psychologists collaborate with each other and are supported by a broad Research Advisory Board consisting of practitioners and scholars of various disciplines.
The ZuRecht project examines not only how Germany’s police services are affected by an ever more diversifying society, but also how this open society is affected by its police. By highlighting and developing the links and interdependencies between them, access to the police service as well as its social-cultural competencies are determined empirically, and by appeal to legal and democratic theory, and organizational sociology. With a view to common, overarching questions, the disciplinary research results are drawn together and analyzed in summary. Being in consultation with Germany’s federal and state polices and integrating the perspective of the organization itself, the ZuRecht project aims for broad institutional discussion of its results.
Research outcome: five dissertations, including two legal dissertations at the University of Freiburg (2019–2022), various information letters, study papers, and training manuals which publicize project results for science and practice.
Funding: Stiftung Mercator.
www.projekt-zurecht.de [website in German]