The Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law provides assistance to the reconstruction or restructuring of the internal organization to States which have experienced radical change in relation to their constitutional law. Beneficiaries and stakeholders of the Foundation's expertise include States attempting to re-establish public order following civil wars, States undergoing a change of direction (e.g. Afghanistan, Sudan or Somalia), new States coming into existence after having seceded from other States (such as South Sudan) and States attempting to realign their legal systems in the aftermath of the Arab Spring.
The assistance provided comprises two fundamental objectives. Firstly, advice and assistance to official institutions for the development of new constitutions, the revision of existing constitutions as well as advice related to the passing of new legislation and legislative reform. The second necessary component constitutes the training of parliamentarians, civil society, other persons involved in the legislative process, and legal education for lawyers and judges. These two objectives, consultation and training, often overlap. Training generally focuses on constitutional law, international law (especially the protection of human rights as well as international humanitarian law), the relationship between national and international law, proceedings in national courts, principles of fair legal processes and professional legal skills. Furthermore, the Foundation actively engages in academic research from a comparative perspective with a view to supporting the above mentioned objectives.
The Foundation is a fully-owned subsidiary of the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science, a non-profit German research organization currently operating more than 80 institutes and research facilities.