3 sentences on the institute

The ABI is one of Germany’s major research centers in the domain of both comparative area studies and transregional studies. As an independent, non-profit research institution, the institute cooperates with the University of Freiburg. The Institute was founded in 1960 and goes back to Arnold Bergstraesser, at that time Professor of Political Science and Sociology at the University of Freiburg.


20. February 2020

For an exchange and a visit of the ABI library, young researchers from l'Université Internationale de Rabat visited the ABI.

18. February 2020

The Chair for Development Theory and Policy is looking for a research assistant in support of the EUCOR funded project ‘Making Infrastructure Global?´

18. February 2020

In "The Interpreter" Antje Missbach and Franzisca Zanker write about Gambia's reasons for taking the crimes against the Rohingyas to court.

4. February 2020

The 2020 summer school will run from 1st to 27th September and include an intensive programme discussing different aspects of governance and its challenges.

Events / Dates

The three-part workshop will start at the ABI with the topic "Contested governance of migration", convened by Andreas Mehler and Franzisca Zanker (both ABI), with keynote speaker: Thomas Faist (University of Bielefeld).


23. April 2020 - 10:00

Horst Köhler, former Federal President of Germany and Prof. Dzodzi Tsikata, Director of the Institute of African Studies at the University of Ghana, will give a key note on this occasion. The Minister of Science, Research and the Arts of Baden-Württemberg, Theresia Bauer, the Lord Mayor of Freiburg, Martin Horn, the Rector of the University of Freiburg, Prof. Dr. Dr. Hans-Jochen Schiewer, and the Director of the ABI, Prof. Dr. Andreas Mehler, will each give a welcoming address.

Assembly hall of the University of Freiburg (Kollegiengebäude I)
4. May 2020 - 18:00


Antje Missbach together with Wayne Palmer recently published an article on the Australian policy on ´turnbacks´ of asylum seekers in the Australian Journal of International Affairs.


Benedikt Kamski together with Fana Gebresenbet recently published an article on the Ethiopian sugar industry in the "Journal of Contemporary African Studies".


Antje Missbach together with Melissa Philips recently published an article on the reconceptualizing of transit states in a special issue on transit states of "Migration and Society".


Projects and cooperations

The project Global Asylum Governance and European Union´s Role (ASILE) studies the interactions between emerging international protection systems and the United Nations Global Compact for Refugees.


This conference aims at a deeper understanding of the relationship between democracy and authoritarianism beyond the borders of the nation state. It examines both the authoritarian turn in the democratic environment and the "prevention of democracy" in states such as China. The conference design is guided by two principles: (1) dialogue between young scholars and senior researchers and (2) multidisciplinary dialogue. It is organised by scientists from the ABI and the University of Freiburg and will take place at the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies from 30th September to 2nd October 2020.


Authoritarian Urbanism combines several activities ranging from research, a FRIAS Junior Researcher Conference on the Convergence of Authoritarianism & Democracy to an invitation for post-doc fellows from the Global South for two six months fellowships, in cooperation with the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation.


The project “Making Infrastructures Global” addresses the issue of contemporary infrastructure projects that often look alike, produced as they are by planning agencies that operate across the world in public-private partnerships. Based on three cases of energy infrastructure projects in East Africa, North Africa and Latin America, this project analyses the contested power dynamics triggered by attempts at making infrastructure global.