Call for Applications: re:constitution Fellowships 2020/21 in Germany

Deadline: 24 May 2020
Open to: scholars holding a PhD in Law/Legal Studies or other neighbouring disciplines, legal experts, government officials, researchers, journalist, residents of the European Union or the United Kingdom, non-EU EEA countries or Switzerland
Benefits: know how, networking and support


Democratic values are increasingly contested in the EU, but how to deal with and respond to these tendencies? Given these developments, re: constitution promotes dialogue on democracy and the rule of law across Europe and its member states. The programme is intended to offer room for discussions and enable European scholars and professionals to share experiences and exchange ideas on this topic of paramount importance. re:constitution is a joint programme of the Berlin-based Forum Transregionale Studien and Democracy Reporting International, led by Christoph Möllers who is Professor of Public Law at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Permanent Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin. The programme is funded by Stiftung Mercator.

re:constitution invites applications for 20 fellowships for the upcoming academic year from October 2020 to July 2021. The programme aims to provide for a high-quality and flexible environment of exchange and debate among scholars, legal practitioners, and journalists from across Europe. Fellows will pursue their own, topic-related projects and will become part of a European exchange network.



in the early stages of your career as a

SCHOLAR holding a Ph.D.* in

  • Law/Legal Studies
  • Political sciences, social sciences, philosophy or other neighboring disciplines (focusing on legal issues and/or the rule of law in Europe)



  • Legal expert (i.e. a judge or court employee, in NGOs,…)
  • Government official
  • Researcher working on questions on the rule of law and/or democracy in the EU
  • Journalist reporting on the rule of law and/or democracy in the EU

Eligible for the fellowship are residents of the European Union or the United Kingdom, non-EU EEA countries or Switzerland.

*Your Ph.D. project should have been completed no more than 10 years ago. Scholars who are still working on their projects may be eligible if their Ph.D. is close to completion. For practitioners, a Ph.D. is not required.



  • re:constitution fellowships for one academic year, starting from 1st October 2020 until 31 July 2021, offering the freedom to pursue your project in a topic of your choice, such as an academic article, essay, policy paper, book, report, podcast, feature story, piece of analysis, etc.
  • For non-academic experts, a fellowship could be a form of a sabbatical.
  • For the first cohort of re:constitution fellows and their projects please visit

Exchange and Debate

  • Personal exchange meetings of 3-5 days in EU countries: The first meeting will take place from 27 to 30 October 2020 in Berlin and Frankfurt/Oder, the second and third in February and June 2021 in other EU member states. The curriculum of these meetings will be developed jointly by the fellows and in consultation with the coordinator of the programme.
  • Opportunities to attend and organise events with emphasis on specific aspects and topics of the programme.


  • Mobility period of six months, the so-called ‛stage’ at institutions of scholarship and practice of your choice in another EU country than your residential one; the ‘stage’ should be divided between a research institution and an institution of legal practice.
  • Monthly stipend of EUR 2.500 during the ‛stage’ (plus supplements depending on personal circumstances).


  • Access to a European network of scholars and practitioners who are interested in and working on questions on the current state of democracy and the rule of law in Europe.


  • Digital exchange formats for the fellows: The exchange between the fellows will be supported by a secure digital working space provided by the Forum Transregionale Studien.

How to Apply?

Please submit your application via our secure online application platform.

You will be asked to prepare and upload as part of your application:

  • Curriculum vitae including publications (2-3 pages),
  • Project outline (2-3 pages),
  • A short abstract of your project (max. 300 words),
  • Two references (university faculty members or practitioners in a field relevant to the applicant’s project) who can serve as referees (no letters of recommendation required),
  • Potential host institutions (your preferred institutions of research or practice in EU member states to spend part of your ‛stage’, ideally including an indication of preferred dates and/or existing personal contacts).

For more information, please visit the official web page.