Field of Research

Biographical Researches on Hans Kelsen

Kelsen in GenevaHans Kelsen (born Prague/Bohemia 18th Oct 1881, died in Orinda/California 19th April 1973) ranks among the greatest jurists of the 20th Century. In Austria, he is best known as the architect of the Austrian Federal Constitution, but in the whole world, he is famous for his "pure theory of law". To mark the 90th Birthday of Hans Kelsen 1971, the Austrian government decided to establish a foundation that bears the name "Hans Kelsen Institute".
In opposite to Kelsen's scientific work, his life is so far relatively little explored. For this reason, the then-directors of the Hans Kelsen Institute, Prof. Robert Walter and Pres. Clemens Jabloner, invited me to write a scientific biography on Kelsen. In 2006-2010 I was Director of the Research Fund FWF-funded research project "Biographical Studies on Hans Kelsen in the years 1881-1940" (P 19287). Since 2011 I am the manager of the FWF project "Kelsen's life in America and the worldwide distribution of his theory of law" (P 23,747). The results of these two projects were already in numerous publications reflected. More information to thes projects (own website).

On 28th April 2011, after the death of Prof. Walter, I was elected the new director of the Hans Kelsen-Institute (together with Pres. Jabloner).