2 doctoral research positions: Anthropology of Law and Conflict Studies

2 doctoral research positions: Anthropology of Law and Conflict Studies

Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology
Place of work
From - Until
01.04.2011 -
Url (PDF/Website)
Mann, Bettina

These doctoral positions are granted in the context of the interdisciplinary programme of the new 'Max Planck Research School on Retaliation, Mediation, Punishment (IMPRS-REMEP)'. The research program aims to attract researchers educated in social anthropology (in particular, legal anthropology and conflict studies).

The doctoral students will carry out their studies mainly in Halle/Saale. They will participate in the training programme offered by the IMPRS-REMEP and can make use of the facilities and infrastructure of the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law. The interdisciplinary curriculum further requires participation in several joint seminars to be conducted together with the doctoral students who are affiliated with the IMPRS-REMEP partner institutes in Freiburg i.Br., Heidelberg and Frankfurt/Main. During these seminars, all students shall achieve cross-disciplinary knowledge in order to develop a common understanding of the overall research agenda and to be able to mutually understand and discuss their doctoral theses from the perspectives of all relevant disciplines. Working language of the training programme and the dissertation is English. According to local university regulations, German language skills may be required in exceptional cases. The scientific supervision of the doctoral students will be carried out by the Max Planck Institute and the University of Freiburg. Cross-disciplinary dissertation projects may be co-supervised by a member of the academic staff from a partner institute.

Dissertation Topics
The research agenda has its focus on the fundamental question common to the disciplines of social sciences and humanities regarding how peace and social order are negotiated, constructed, maintained and re-gained. In particular, in the context of conflict and post-conflict societies, traditional approaches to reconciliation and mediation are being adopted, amending, and – partially – replacing, well-established systems of punishment mainly based on concepts of retaliation.

Research at the Max Planck Institute in Halle/Saale should fall within the fields of legal anthropology and conflict studies in the broadest sense of these terms. The focus of analysis should be conflict and conflict settlement procedures (retaliation, mediation, punishment) in plural legal contexts and should also include strategies for inclusion and exclusion in conflict situations. Of special interest are configurations of various juridical repertoires, such as local or customary law, state law, religious law, or transnational norms for conflict management, including actors’ abilities to manoeuvre within or among these repertoires (e.g. forum shopping). Of equal importance are issues pertaining to the social construction of conflict parties and their identity patterns. This research programme encompasses dispute management within or between various groups or institutions at various levels of social organisation: in semi-autonomous social fields such as kinship groups and local groups; within or between ethnic or religious communities, both within or across national borders; between states; or in transnational settings. Potential research topics range from conflict resolution in acephalous societies to conflict management procedures in (post) conflict societies (retaliation, punishment, compensation, reconciliation), for example, in the form of transitional or restorative justice or reconciliation processes. The interaction of global, local and translocal processes may thus acquire special analytical importance. Applicants are expected to develop their research questions independently, and to specify those in their proposal. Proposals with a comparative perspective and/or an inter-disciplinary approach will be considered with priority. It is expected that anthropological projects include a field research of approximately one year.

Application requirements
1. Completion of a university degree in social anthropology at a German university or completion at an equivalent university abroad.
2. Alternatively to (1), completion of regular university studies in a social sciences’ discipline as major subject, a second major subject, or two additional minor subjects, with an overall duration of at least 4 years at a German university, or completion of an equivalent programme at an equivalent university abroad. Master degree or equivalent degree from abroad. In exceptional cases with a background in sociology of law and interest in social anthropology empirical research, completion of a law degree at a German university or completion at an equivalent university abroad. First or Second German State Law Exam with a minimum overall grade of "vollbefriedigend" (according to the examination regulations "JAPrO" of the State of Baden-Württemberg), or an equivalent degree with an equiva¬lent grade ("with distinction") from abroad.
3. Submission of a substantive proposal for a dissertation topic linked to the research agenda of the IMPRS-REMEP.
4. Solid proficiency in the English language. In addition, students should have at least some basic knowledge of German language and demonstrate willingness to improve it.
The IMPRS-REMEP seeks to reach a composition of at least 50 percent foreign doctoral students. Thus, foreign candidates with a foreign degree are explicitly encouraged to apply. Recognition of equivalence of foreign degrees is to be determined by the doctoral committee of the Faculty of Philosophy I of the Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, in accordance with the criteria laid out by the Central Office for Foreign Education at the Secretariat of the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs ("Zentralstelle für ausländisches Bildungswesen im Sekretariat der Ständigen Konferenz der Kultusminister der Länder").

Application documents
1. Cover sheet addressed to the 'International Max Planck Research School on Retaliation, Mediation, Punishment' at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg i.Br.
2. European style curriculum vitae (http://europass.cedefop.europa.eu/) in German or English. It should include information on all previous research activities.
3. Copy of Secondary Education certificate with a list of subject areas. The documents must be officially translated into German (preferably) or English and a copy of the original supplied.
4. Copy of all university certificates with a list of all grades, including the overall grade, the average grade and the university certificate of graduation. The documents must be officially translated into German (preferably) or English and a copy of the original supplied.
5. Substantive/meaningful proposal for a research topic (5 pages), preferably in English, structured into a) relevance of the proposed topic in the context of the overall research agenda of the IMPRS-REMEP, b) state of preparation, c) aim of the project, d) probable links to other disciplines, e) methodology, f) proposed timeline, g) intended time of completion of the dissertation. It is intended that doctoral students, when participating in the research programme in a regular manner, will be able to complete the programme within a three years period (two plus twice a half a year).
6. Two letters of recommendation from two senior scientists (to be written in English or German). These letters should include information as to previous research experience, and vouch for the ability of the applicant to undertake doctoral studies at the Research School.
7. Applicants who do not speak English as their native language and who are unable of demonstrating good proficiency in English language in any other way must prove their skills through language examination certificates. In particular, the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with at least 6.0 bands or TOEFEL (at least 560 points, computer: 220 points) are recognized.
8. Applicants who do not speak German as their native language should be capable to demonstrate basic knowledge of German, e.g., through a certificate German language ("Zertifikat Deutsch", ZD). Proficiency in German language is not a formal precondition for application. However, subject to university regulations, German may be mandatory for the oral doctoral exam or defense, or for parts of it, in individual cases. If necessary, access to external language courses can be arranged.

Presentation of officially authenticated copies of the original certificates etc., with regards to Nos. 3 and 4 above, is only necessary once a decision has been made to admission.

Application dates
Application documents must be submitted electronically no later than by January 31st 2011 to the following email address: wagenbrett@eth.mpg.de (maximum 5 MB per E-Mail). Please refrain from sending postal applications.

Applicants will be invited to telephone or personal interviews in Halle/Saale in mid February. The selection procedure should be completed by the end of February 2011. The applicants will be informed of the selection results in writing. During the selection procedure we ask applicants to refrain from contacting the Institute with regards to the results of the procedure. An absolute right to financial support does not exist.

The Max Planck Society and the Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg endeavour, wherever possible, to employ disabled persons and applications from such persons are expressly called for. The Max Planck Society and the Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg also desire to increase the proportion of women in areas where they are underrepresented. Women are therefore expressly encouraged to apply.

Financial support
Financial support is granted in accordance with the guidelines of the Max Planck Society in the form of a doctoral contract or bursary. The financial support regarding the doctoral contract corresponds with public service organizations (up to 50 per cent of the payment group 13 degree 1 of the General Framework Agreement on Public Services, "Tarifvertrag Öffentlicher Dienst", TVöD). Financial support will be granted for a period of two years, with a possibility of two subsequent extensions, each for a duration of six months.

Further information on the research programme of the IMPRS-REMEP as well as on the parallel calls published by the partner institutes can be acquired at www.mpicc.de/ww/en/pub/imprs-remep.htm. For information on the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Halle/Saale, please check www.eth.mpg.de.

For additional inquiries, please write to Dr. Bertram Turner, REMEP-coordinator at the MPI for Social Anthropology, email: turner@eth.mpg.de.

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