Further developments at the Max Planck Institute in Luxembourg
Following the Executive Board Meeting on March 9, 2020 at the Max Planck Institute in Luxembourg, the Max Planck Society informed the Luxembourg Ministry of Higher Education and Research about the further procedure. The Max Planck Society is convinced that the measures it has initiated are the right steps to consolidate administrative actions, resolve the working situation at the Institute and to strengthen research activities. The establishment of a joint Liaison Committee, which will meet twice a year, is intended to improve the regular exchange between the Institute, the Ministry and the MPG.
New Head of Administration
The measures, some of which were already initiated in the past few months, aim to reestablish a solid basis for the Institute's administrative activities after a lengthy vacancy in the position of Head of Administration.
On 2 March 2020, the Institute appointed a new Head of Administration who will devote herself to this issue with the highest priority. Some of the shortcomings have already been remedied. The Max Planck Society is confident that the problems that remain can be resolved by the summer 2020.
Special representative of the Executive Board
The President of the Max Planck Society, Martin Stratmann also informed the Ministry that the Executive Committee asked Prof. Reinhard Zimmermann from the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law, Hamburg, to act as special representative to examine the situation at the Institute. In this function, Prof. Zimmermann – prior to the Board meeting – held talks with the Institute's Staff Delegation and a large number of other staff members after the Working Environment Staff Survey conducted in summer 2019 had produced worrying findings.
Based on the survey, the Executive Board considers further investigations necessary and has commissioned the head of the Internal Investigation Unit of the Max Planck Society in Munich to conduct them.
Broadening the Institute’s range of activities by appointing Fellows and/or Research Groups
The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg has allocated financing for an Institute with three departments. Currently, only two departments are occupied after the appointment for the third department was not successful.
It was agreed with the Ministry of Higher Education and Research that under the circumstances the third Director's post should not be filled. Instead, the Max Planck Society will endeavour to strengthen the Institute and its range of activities by appointing Fellows and/or research groups.