Rechtskulturen takes on the challenges of internationalizations and responds to the necessity to understand law in its particular cultural contexts. One central aspect is the interest in systematic confrontations of different understandings of law, its functionalities and specific cultural techniques. From a genuinely legal perspective that acknowledges legal studies as an academic discipline geared towards specific professions (“Professionsfakultät”), the program provides spaces for transregional and interdisciplinary communications about law. At the same time, the irritation by the particular “others” shall not be tamed and circumvented by the premature assumption of a common tertium comparationis, and shall not be functionalized by a narrow, purely legal-pragmatic perspective.

Rechtskulturen integrates, as a network of interdisciplinary research on law, systematic and area-specific approaches. The program explores the foundations and contexts of law in a plural world where competitive and complementary multiplicities of legal and normative orders are part of social reality. Sophisticated comparisons and productive confrontations are facilitated and encouraged by the invitation of seven research fellows per year, coming from all corners of the globe, as well as by the exploration and development of new communication and research formats.

Rechtskulturen is a project of the Berlin Research Network Recht im Kontext (Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin / Institute for Advanced Study) at the Forum Transregionale Studien. The program is supported by VolkswagenStiftung. Until December 2013, it had been funded by the Land of Berlin (Senatsverwaltung für Bildung, Wissenschaft und Forschung). Rechtskulturen is associated with the Faculty of Law at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. It is directed by Susanne Baer and Christoph Möllers (until May 2014 together with Alexandra Kemmerer).