Research institutes

Montesquieu Institute

The Montesquieu Institute Maastricht is a research centre dedicated to European and comparative parliamentary studies. Montesquieu's 'formula' for the organisation of a sustainable and democratic society has to a large extent determined the organisation of many 'modern' parliamentary democracies. However, this formula provides some challenging questions: is it still applicable nowadays? One of the objectives of the inter-university Montesquieu Institute is to stimulate both Dutch and foreign scientiok for answers to this kind of questions. It is a collaboration between, amongst others, UM, Leiden University and the University of Groningen.


The Montesquieu Institute Maastricht focuses on parliamentary systems of government in Europe and in the European Union, on aspects of separation of power, democracy and the rule of law and human rights. The Institute’s aim is to contribute to the academic and public debate on democracy and governance in the European Union and its member-states by deepening the understanding of the constitutional structures and political practice of national systems of parliamentary government and rule of law and democracy. It takes a thoroughly comparative approach to parliamentary studies in a European context and analyses national systems in a vertical multi-layered perspective.

With its focus, the constitutional law research is well suited to the faculty and university themes related to globalisation, Europeanisation and comparative law, as laid down in the two research pillars about Global Justice and Institutional Transformation.

 Visit Montesquieu's research 

Montesquieu’s research mainly takes place in the following pillars:
1. Global Justice
2. Institutional Transformations


Montesquieu news

  • Maarten Stremler

    Withholding EU subsidies is no panacea for Hungarian rule of law

    Tuesday, April 26, 2022

    Earlier this month, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced in the European Parliament that the Commission will launch a procedure to withhold EU subsidies to Hungary for violating the rule of law.

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  • Research grant for Monica Claes and Maarten Stremler

    Tuesday, March 22, 2022

    Professor Monica Claes and assistant professor Maarten Stremler have received a grant from the Statesman Thorbecke Fund of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts & Sciences.

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  • wolf

    National parliaments in the European Union

    Thursday, February 3, 2022

    PhD thesis written by Sofie Wolf.
    A legal comparison between the Dutch and the German parliament in EU affairs. The purpose of this dissertation is to compare the activities of the Dutch and German parliament in EU affairs. 

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  • law_prashant sabharwal - Phd thesis

    Conflict or Concord?

    Wednesday, February 2, 2022

    PhD thesis written by Prashant Sabharwal.
    The Jurisprudential Response of the National Constitutional Courts of Germany, France and the United Kingdom to the Primacy Doctrine of the Court of Justice of the European Union from 2005 to 2015 – and the Lessons to be Learnt.

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  • law_staatsrecht-begrepen-staatsrecht-begrepen-a-w-heringa

    Staatsrecht begrepen

    Friday, May 1, 2020

    This publication is only in Dutch.
    Staatsrecht begrepen is een gestructureerde en systematische inleiding in het Nederlandse staatsrecht. Lichamen, organen, bevoegdheden, wetgeving, de verhouding regering en parlement, rechtspraak, grondrechten, bestuur, decentralisatie, de doorwerking van EU-recht en van internationaal recht worden beschreven en uiteengezet. 

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  • law_populism_and_democracy_montesquieu

    Populism and Democracy

    Tuesday, April 7, 2020

    This volume is part of a research project on populism and democracy conducted at Maastricht University, Faculty of Law, and funded by the Statesman Thorbecke Fund at the Dutch Royal Academy of Sciences (knaw).

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  • SAVE THE DATE: Conference 'Populism and Democracy'

    Friday, October 11, 2019

    The conference 'Populism and Democracy' brings together scholars of constitutional law and political science from around the world to discuss the influence of populist politics on constitutional developments, the reasons for success or failure of constitutional defences, and potential ways out of the global crisis of liberal democracy. The conference will take place on Friday, 24 April 2020 at UM Campus Brussels.

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  • Graduation Indonesia

    Better Legal Education in Indonesia

    Friday, September 20, 2019

    The Faculties of Law of Airlangga University in Surabaya and Maastricht University, the Netherlands, in collaboration with the Maastricht School of Management (MSM) have been awarded a grant under the Orange Knowledge Programme to embark on the important mission of strengthening skills, ethics, and integrity in Indonesian legal education. This newsletter aims to provide you with the latest update on the project.

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  • Constitutions compared

    Friday, September 13, 2019

    The 5th edition of this handbook provides a user-friendly introduction to comparative constitutional law. For each area of constitutional law, a general introduction and a comparative overview is provided, which is then followed by more detailed country chapters on that specific area. The author has expanded several chapters to provide for even more detail on national legal systems and constitutional comparison.

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  • Comparative Constitutional Law Documents

    Friday, September 13, 2019

    Comparative Constitutional Law Documents contains a selection of constitutions and fundamental legislative instruments from five Western democracies: the United States, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. 

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  • Groot onderhoud of kruimelwerk bundel Montesquieu

    Montesquieu bundel: Groot onderhoud of kruimelwerk

    Friday, July 5, 2019

    Dutch only.
    Heeft de Nederlandse democratie en rechtsstaat groot, achterstallig onderhoud nodig, of blijft het beperkt tot kruimelwerk? Zorgt het advies van Staatscommissie Remkes voor te hoge constitutionele verwachtingen? Dit is de vraag die centraal staat in de nieuwste bundel van het Montesquieu Instituut die op 3 juli werd uitgereikt aan minister Ollongren van Binnenlandse Zaken en Koninkrijksrelaties.

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  • Aalt Willem Heringa

    “Better less control over more than the other way around”

    Monday, July 1, 2019

    As part of our series Maastricht, reflecting on Europe, Aalt Willem Heringa, professor of (Comparative) Constitutional and Administrative Law, calls for more powers to the European Parliament.

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  • Graduation Indonesia

    Indonesia legal education and legal society project (OKP)

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    We are happy to report that a large project, Indonesia legal education and legal society, under NUFFIC’s Orange Knowledge Programme has been awarded to our faculty.

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  • Europa_europa_boekje_aalt_willem_-_montesquieu_reeks

    Europa, Europa: op weg naar de verkiezingen van mei 2019

    Tuesday, May 7, 2019

    The newest edition of the Montesquieu reeks no 12 "Europa, Europa: op weg naar de verkiezingen van mei 2019" ("Europe, Europe: on the way to the May 2019 elections") is out!

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  • An Uneven Balance? A Legal Analysis of Power Asymmetries between National Parliaments in the EU

    An uneven balance? A legal analysis of power asymmetries between national parliaments in the EU

    Monday, March 25, 2019

    The book provides a comprehensive legal analysis of power asymmetries that exist between national parliaments in the EU.

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  • Blog bevrijdende en begrenzende Soevereiniteit_MLR

    New book: Bevrijdende en begrenzende soevereiniteit

    Tuesday, December 11, 2018

    New book: Bevrijdende en begrenzende soevereiniteit. The book brings together many of the annual conference contributions (both English and Dutch). The contributions focus in particular on the meaning of sovereignty and the relationship between the nation state and the European Union.

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  • Een goede raad_boek Montesquieu_stand van de lokale democratie

    Launch of Montesquieu volume 11 'Een goede raad'

    Tuesday, October 16, 2018

    This information is only available in Dutch.

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  • Comparative Government ook in Luzern

    Thursday, August 4, 2016

    De staf van het Maastrichtse MI zal dit najaar voor de tweede keer de mastercursus Comparative Government verzorgen aan de rechtenfaculteit van de universiteit van Luzern. Deze samenwerking bevalt beide partijen uitstekend en geeft ons kans om onze expertise op het vergelijkende staatsrecht te delen met een grotere groep (internationale) studenten. De docenten die in Luzern zullen doceren zijn Aalt Willem Heringa, Sascha Hardt en Thu Hoai Nguyen.

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Montesquieu blogs

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