of PRIF – Peace Research Institute Frankfurt


§ 1 Organizational Form

The Peace Research Institute Frankfurt was founded by the federal state of Hesse as a foundation under public law, holding legal capacity. With the consent of the Hessian government it may also nominate a public person that has rendered outstanding services for peace.


§ 2 Office

The foundation has its offices in Frankfurt/M. It can maintain a branch office in Berlin.


§ 3 Purpose of the Foundation

The Peace Research Institute Frankfurt investigates the causes, development and possibilities for the settlement of conflicts. The institute does not limit its research to analyzing conflict conditions but, on the basis of such investigations, seeks to develop innovative transformational and problem-solving concepts that at the same time contribute to a reduction of violence, increasing social justice and political freedom in the international system as well as in individual societies. The foundation introduces the findings of peace and conflict research to the public and in particular seeks to bring them into effect in political education.


§ 4 Freedom of Research

The foundation, its research departments and the academic staff members pursue their work, enjoying scientific independence and freedom. This freedom does not release them from fidelity to the constitution of the state of Hesse and to the German Constitution.


§ 5 Structure and Governing Bodies

(1) The foundation is subdivided into research departments.

(2) The governing bodies of the foundation are:

  1. the Board of Trustees,
  2. the Executive Board,
  3. the Research Council,
  4. the Scientific Advisory Board.

The members of the governing bodies of the institute are entitled to receive adequate allowance. Details can be governed by the Board of Trustees and/or by the Board of Trustees committee for financial affairs. (Amendment as of 6th October 2010)  

(3) If the term of office ends, the members of the respective governing bodies remain in office until their successors have been elected.

(4) All bodies of the foundation may also adopt resolutions in hybrid or completely digital meetings.


§ 6 Board of Trustees

(1) The Board of Trustees is composed of the following members with voting rights:

  1. the Prime Minister of the State of Hesse or a representative nominated by him/her,
  2. the Hessian Minister for Science and the Arts or a representative nominated by him/her,
  3. two representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research,
  4. the Mayor of the city of Frankfurt or a representative nominated by him/her,
  5. a member of the Executive Board of Goethe University Frankfurt,
  6. two public figures proposed by the Executive Board and appointed for four years by the Board of Trustees. A repeat appointment is permitted, as is early dismissal with due cause.

(2) The Board of Trustees members with an advisory capacity are:

  1. the chairperson of the Advisory Board,
  2. the chairperson of the Research Council.

(3) The chair of the Board of Trustees is held by the Hessian Minister for Science and the Arts or a representative nominated by him/her.

(4) As a rule, the Board of Trustees assembles for a regular meeting twice, and a minimum of once, a year. An extraordinary meeting needs to be convened if requested by half of the members of the Board of Trustees or by the Executive Board. A notice period of two weeks must be observed when convening the meeting. The items on the agenda need to be communicated at the time when when the members are invited to the meeting.

(5) The Executive Board attends the Board of Trustees meetings.

(6) The Board of Trustees can make decisions if more than half of the members are present. Decisions are made with simple majority of the votes cast. In matters of importance to research policy, of considerable financial implications or with regard to the managerial staff of the institute, a decision can neither be taken against the vote of the representative of the state of Hessen nor the representative of the federal government. The meeting must be recorded through meeting minutes and shall be signed by the Chairperson of the Board of Trustees.

(7) Each member of the Board of Trustees may transfer its vote to one of the other Board of Trustee members.

However, a member may only be entitled to a maximum of two votes.

(8) The Board of Trustees may take decisions through a written procedure. Details are outlined in the rules of procedure.

(9) Members of the Board of Trustees who belong to the Board of Trustees of the Institute qua office may be represented. A certificate of representation is required.

(10) A member of the Board of Trustees may also resign from office without good cause at any time by giving one month's written notice to the Chairperson.


§ 7 Duties of the Board of Trustees

(1) The Board of Trustees supervises the pursuit of the foundation’s purpose as well as the legitimacy, the expediency and the efficiency of the administration through the Executive Board of PRIF. In detail it fulfills the following tasks:

  1. take decisions regarding the research program on the basis of the evaluation through the Scientific Advisory Board;
  2. adopt the economic plan (program budget);
  3. approve the annual accounts;
  4. appoint an auditor;
  5. approve the actions of the Executive Board for the preceding financial year;
  6. appoint the heads of the research department;
  7. approve the appointment of the executive director, his/her deputy and the budget officer;
  8. approve the vote of the academic staff member/s to the Executive Board;
  9. appoint and dismiss the Scientific Advisory Board members on the recommendation of the Executive Board;
  10. adopt the rules of procedure of the Executive Board and of the Research Council as well as the Scientific Advisory Board’s rules of procedure.

(2) For controlling the foundation’s administration, the Board of Trustees may at any time request information from the Executive Board. The Board of Trustees can authorize individual members to monitor the administration, to check the annual report and evaluation reports as well as the annual financial statement. External experts may be consulted for special tasks.

(3) The Board of Trustees can convene committees for certain tasks, where persons cooperate who are not necessarily members of the Board of Trustees. These committees may be endowed with decision-making authority. Following the suggestions of the Executive Board, the Board of Trustees appoints the selection committee appointing the PRIF heads of the research departments.

(4) The Board of Trustees may adopt its own rules of procedure.


§ 8 The Executive Board

(1) The Executive Board is composed of the heads of the research departments, the administrative director and two academic staff members.

(2) The Research Council elects its representatives in the Executive Board according to § 12, clause 1, 1 and 2, for two years from among its staff members. Academic staff members are entitled to vote according to §12, clause 1.

(3) The Executive Board elects from among the research department heads the executive director and the deputy director. The term of office is four years.

(4) The administrative director serves as the administrative manager and budget officer.

(5) The Executive Board takes decisions by simple majority of its members who are either present on site at the meeting or are participating digitally. In case of equal vote, the vote of the executive director is the decisive vote. In matters regarding the budget and with considerable financial implications, decisions cannot be taken against the vote of the budget officer.

(6) Regarding legal transactions, the Executive Board needs to be represented by two commonly acting members of the Executive Board, one of them always being the executive director, the deputy director or the administrative director. The mutual authorization of representatives is not permitted.


§ 9 Duties of the Executive Board

(1) The Executive Board directs PRIF on the basis of this constitution and the decisions of the Board of Trustees. It has all the powers which are not entrusted to other organs through statutory provisions or through this constitution. It is especially entrusted with the general administration of the foundation. Its duties are in particular:

  1. the representation of the foundation in all legal transactions and legal disputes;
  2. the administration of the foundation’s assets;
  3. preparing and implementing the budget plan (department budget);
  4. the budget and accounting of the foundation as well as the controlling;
  5. personnel matters, recruitment and dismissal of the scientific and non-scientific staff members of the foundation as well as the admission of PhD students;
  6. preparing a proposal to the Board of Trustees for setting up a selection committee for the appointment of research department heads;
  7. preparing for the Board of Trustees a list of names for the appointment of Scientific Advisory Board members;
  8. preparing the research program and its implementation together with the Research Council;
  9. scientific quality control in consultation with the Research Council;
  10. preparing an annual report;
  11. informing the Board of Trustees about matters of special significance;
  12. supervising the current administrative activities.

(2) The Executive Board can adopt its own rules of procedure.


§ 10 Research Council

(1) According to §12, clause 1, the research department heads, heads of junior research groups and research groups based at the institute, and the scientific staff members are eligible to vote for the Research Council.

(2) The Research Council elects a chairperson as well as two deputies for a period of two years.

(3) The Research Council is responsible for designing the scientific program as well as developing and approving the research projects together with the Executive Board. If in individual cases no agreement can be reached, the Executive Board and the Research Council, guided by the head of the Scientific Advisory Board, separately discuss the subject again and then form a commission with equal representation. Their vote is binding.

(4) The Research Council assists, in consultation with the Executive Board, in scientific quality control, in particular regarding PRIF’s own publications.

(5) The Research Council has to be consulted before the appointment of the research department heads as well as the heads of research groups and junior research groups, the employment of the scientific staff, the awarding of the status of PhD candidate, the association of researchers with and without access to the Research Council and the invitation of guest scientists through the Executive Board.

(6) The Research Council can adopt its own rules of procedure.


§ 11 Advisory Board

(1) The Board of Trustees appoints a Scientific Advisory Board that is composed of no more than ten expert members. There should also be foreign scientists on the Board. The Board of Trustees, at the suggestion of the Executive Board, appoints the members for four years. The members may be reelected once.

(2) The Scientific Advisory Board should promote and to support the scientific work of the foundation. It provides advice to the Board of Trustees, the Executive Board and to the Research Council in designing the research program and in developing research projects.

(3) The Scientific Advisory Board comments on the Executive Board’s draft for the research budget and presents a recommendation to the Board of Trustees.

(4) The Scientific Advisory Board establishes criteria for evaluating the institute’s research as well as its service achievements. On the basis of these criteria, and in communication with the Executive Board and the Research Council, it evaluates at regular intervals the achievements of the individual research departments and of the institute as a whole. It informs the Board of Trustees regularly about its evaluations.

(5) The Advisory Board may consult additional experts.

(6) The members of the Scientific Advisory Board work on an unsalaried basis. They receive travel expenses and an attendance fee. Furthermore, in case of special requirements, an additional remuneration may be granted.

(7) The Board of Trustees releases the rules of procedure for the Scientific Advisory Board and determines the amount payable as attendance fee as well as possible additional remunerations.


§ 12 Scientific Staff

(1) The scientific staff of the foundation is composed of:

  1. scientific employees entrusted with research tasks,
  2. scientific employees entrusted with scientific service tasks,
  3. PRIF’s PhD students.

(2) In addition, non-permanent scientific staff, in particular guest scientists, will work at the foundation.

(3) In addition, the foundation can involve external scientists as associated researchers for a limited period of time.


§ 13 Foundation Assets

The foundation assets may only be used in accordance with the foundation objective.


§ 14 Budget and Accounting

(1) The foundation’s accounting year corresponds to the accounting year of the state of Hessen.

(2) The economic administration as well as accounting and auditing are determined by the principles of budgetary law valid in the state of Hessen.

(3) The foundation is subject to the auditing of the “Bundesrechnungshof” (federal court of audits) and the “Rechnungshof des Landes Hessen” (court of audits of the state of Hessen).


§ 15 Constitutional Changes

Constitutional changes are decided by the Board of Trustees by a two-thirds majority of its members according to the constitution. The decision may not be taken against the votes of the representatives of the state of Hessen or of the federal government in the Board of Trustees. The foundation objective cannot be altered. The constitutional changes may not jeopardize or prevent the fulfilment of the foundation objective.


§ 16 Dissolution of the Foundation

(1) The dissolution of the foundation may be decided by the Board of Trustees by a two-thirds majority of its members according to the constitution, following a hearing of the Executive Board.

(2) In case of a dissolution, the foundation assets go to the state of Hessen, that may only use it directly and exclusively in accordance with the foundation objective. The state of Hessen takes care of the foundation’s commitments.


§ 17 Transitional Regulations

(1) After this constitution comes into effect, § 5, clause 3 is valid accordingly for the members of the organs of the foundation.

(2) The Board of Trustees, composed of the members according to § 6, clause 1, 1-5, during its first meeting appoints the members of the Board of Trustees according to § 6, clause 1, 6.


§ 18 Coming into Effect

This constitution comes into effect upon approval by the Darmstadt Regional Council.