The research centre was created in 2016 and is from 2019 a joint facility of the Max Weber Centre and the Gotha Research Centre. Its purpose is to foster new work and coordinate current scholarship on natural law in the early-modern period, which we take to stretch from the Reformation to the early nineteenth century. Within this framework the focus is on the flowering of natural law in the period after Hugo Grotius and especially the shaping of the subject as an academic institution across Europe. This is reflected in the main project, ‘Natural Law 1625-1850’, which we conduct in collaboration with the Interdisciplinary Centre for European Enlightenment Studies (IZEA) of the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg. The large publication project Natural Law and Enlightenment Classics is edited from the research centre, and a series associated with ‘Natural Law 1625-1850’ is being launched by Brill under the general editorship of the directors of this project. In addition to IZEA, we have close links with The Institute of Intellectual History at the University of St. Andrews. The longer term members of the research centre welcome both doctoral researchers and visiting fellows at the Kolleg who have interests in early-modern natural law to be affiliated with the research centre.
Dr. Mikkel Munthe Jensen introduces the research centre