In its first years (1999-2005) this department concentrated its research on postsocialist property relations. This phase was followed by a project on citizenship in the Caucasus and by a series of studies of religion after socialism (until 2010). Themes and spatial boundaries have been progressively expanded to include China and Vietnam (since 2006) and Japan (since 2009). Recent work in economic anthropology has enlarged the frame with projects in S. Asia and Egypt. Current research into „financialization“ (from 2015) extends from Spain to China.
The programmes of the Department are all organized within the optic of „Eurasia“. Since 2009 fieldwork-based research has been supplemented by projects in historical anthropology. A concept of Eurasia also forms the frame for our interdisciplinary International Max Planck Research School „Anthropology, Archaeology and History of Eurasia“ (from 2012) and for the ERC Project „Realising Eurasia: Civilization and Moral Economy in the 21st Century“ (2014-2019).
The year 2017 brought two significant new initiatives: a collaboration with the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Göttingen, and the Department of Social Anthropology, Cambridge University, „Centre for Ethics, Economy and Social Change“ („Max-Cam“); and a network to strengthen anthropological research in the Visegrád states, „V4Net“.
Max Planck Cambridge Centre launched (Website of the University of Cambridge)
Patriarchy and Familism in Time and Space: the comparative study of co-residence across Eurasia (final report)
Ethnic Minorities and the State in Eurasia (final report)
The Global Political Economy of Cultural Heritage (final report)
Traders, Markets, and the State in Vietnam (final report)
Social Support and Kinship in China and Vietnam (final report)
Religion, Identity, Postsocialism (final report)
Caucasian Boundaries and Citizenship from Below (final report)
Property Relations (final report)