The Research Group “The International Rule of Law – Rise or Decline?” invites applications for three Fellowships from 1 October 2015.


The Research Group examines the role of international law in a changing global order. Developments in recent years give rise to the question whether the move towards an international rule of law, which seems to continue in some areas, has lost momentum in others. Inter-state crises in Eastern Europe and Asia display renewed thinking in terms of geopolitical spheres of influence. Collective efforts to address global issues through universal international law meet difficulties in certain fields such as climate protection and world trade. Can we, under current conditions, still observe a legalization/juridification of international relations based on a universal understanding of values, or are we seeing a tendency towards an informalization or a reformalization of international law, or even an erosion of international legal norms? Or are we simply observing a slump in the development towards an international rule of law based on a universal understanding of values?

The Research Group addresses these questions from a legal and a political science perspective. The Group consists of three public international lawyers and three political scientists: Heike Krieger (Freie Universität Berlin), Georg Nolte (Humboldt Universität zu Berlin) and Andreas Zimmermann (Universität Potsdam) (Public International Law), as well as Markus Jachtenfuchs (Hertie School of Governance), Andrea Liese (Universität Potsdam) and Michael Zürn (Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin) (Political Science). The working language of the group is English.

The Position

This is a fixed-term position for a period of 12 months which may be extended by up to a further year. Fellows will work at Humboldt University Berlin. They will co-operate with the group’s senior researchers and participate in the academic exchange of the Research Group. They are expected to complete a peer-reviewed publication project during their fellowship.

A monthly stipend of EUR 2500,00 plus one roundtrip is attached to the position from which all costs will have to be covered.


The Fellowships are designed for applicants worldwide with a doctorate in international law or in international relations. The proposed projects should relate to the Group’s area of research. Applicants must have completed their PhD by 31 August 2015 and should not have pursued more than 3 years of postdoctoral research. Candidates from outside Europe are particularly encouraged to apply. Applicants are not expected to speak German.

Applicants should submit:

  • a curriculum vitae including transcripts of degrees awarded and a list of publications;
  • a description of current research and of a project to be pursued during the first year of the Fellowship (no more than 1000 words);
  • a summary of the candidate’s doctoral thesis;
  • two letters of recommendation.

The deadline for application is 31 March 2015.

Please send your application in PDF format via email to

Further information can be obtained at