The Center

Strengthening Franco-German research

The Max Planck Sciences Po Center on Coping with Instability in Market Societies (MaxPo) is a Franco-German research center which was jointly founded in 2012 by the Max Planck Society and Sciences Po at the initiative of the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies (MPIfG) in Cologne. The Center's research investigates how individuals, organizations, and nation-states are coping with the new forms of economic and social instability that have developed in Western societies as a result of policy shifts, the expansion of markets, technological advances, and cultural changes. Located at Sciences Po Paris and cooperating closely with the MPIfG, the Center aims to contribute substantially to the social sciences in Europe and to enrich academic and political dialogue between France and Germany.

MaxPo was established in 2012. The Center provides an institutional footing for the MPIfG in France and links Sciences Po to the social sciences in Germany, giving them both more visibility as leading research institutions in Europe. The Center fosters cooperation between France and Germany in the social sciences by promoting the exchange of researchers and building a joint research program. Research workshops, a visitors’ program, and connections to social science institutions both within and beyond Europe reinforce the Center's international orientation.

The AXA Research Fund, a global initiative of scientific philanthropy supported by the worldwide insurance group AXA, awarded 2 million euros to Sciences Po in 2012 to create an endowed Chair in Market Sociology, currently held by Olivier Godechot, co-director of the Center.

France and Germany have outstanding research traditions in the social sciences. Close cooperation between the best of German and French social science is key to developing a robust capacity for original research in Europe. The Center thus contributes to the further realization of the European Research Area.

Read more:
  • Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies

    The Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies (MPIfG) conducts advanced basic research on the governance of modern societies. It aims to develop an empirically based theory of the social and political foundations of modern economies by investigating the interrelation between economic, social and political action. Using primarily an institutional approach, it examines how markets and business organizations are embedded in historical, institutional, political and cultural frameworks, how they develop, and how their social contexts change over time. The Institute seeks to build a bridge between theory and policy and to contribute to political debate on major challenges facing modern societies.

    The MPIfG is one of the research institutes of the Max Planck Society, which is one of the largest non-university research organizations in Germany. Some eighty percent of the Society's funds are provided publicly by federal and regional governments. The rest comes from donations, project funding, and self-generated income.

    The MPIfG considers international cooperation to be the most promising organizational form of comparative research. Many visiting researchers make valuable contributions to its research program. The MPIfG is part of a worldwide network of research institutions and researchers working in the social sciences. It cooperates closely with several research institutes abroad.

  • Sciences Po

    Sciences Po is an institution of higher education and research in the humanities and social sciences. Its work in law, economics, history, political science and sociology is pursued through eleven research units and several crosscutting programmes.

    Its research community includes over two hundred thirty members and three hundred fifty PhD candidates. Recognized internationally, their work covers a wide range of topics including education, democracies, urban development, globalisation and public health.

    One of Sciences Po’s key objectives is to make a significant contribution to methodological, epistemological, and theoretical advances in the humanities and social sciences. Sciences Po’s mission is also to share the results of its research with the international research community, students, and more broadly, society as a whole.

  • AXA Research Fund

    Created in 2008, the AXA Research Fund provides philanthropic support for research focused on understanding and preventing the risks threatening the environment, human life, and our societies. As of November 2012 the AXA Research Fund has committed 92 million euros and thus given its support to 334 research projects, implemented in 26 countries by researchers of 49 nationalities. In France, it has so far committed a sum of 36.2 million euros for 164 projects. The funds are granted based on a decision by the Scientific Board. By supporting top-tier researchers working on risks all over the world and helping them to share their discoveries, the AXA Research Fund tries to enrich the public debate and AXA’s own expertise with academic knowledge. Through research philanthropic sponsorship, AXA aims to foster a safer and stronger society over the long term. More details about the AXA Research Fund are available on our website, including presentation of the supported researchers, of the funding schemes, and biographies of the members of the Scientific Board.

Back to top Back to top