Jan Amilcar Schmidt

Country Manager Somalia and Research Fellow

Project Activities


Other Activities and Research Interests

Comparative Constitutional Law, Comparative Federalism Studies, Constitutional Law and Constitutionalism in Africa, Political Decentralisation in Africa

Professional and Academic Background

Since 6/2013 Research Fellow Africa Projects and Project Manager Somalia Projects, Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law, Nairobi, Kenya and Mogadishu (Somalia)

1/2013 – 4/2013 Constitution Legal Adviser at the United Nations Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS), Nairobi (Kenya) and Mogadishu (Somalia)

11/2011 – 11/2012 Seconded Constitution Legal Adviser to the UNDP Somalia/UNPOS Joint Constitution Unit, Nairobi (Kenya)

12/2010 – 10/2011 Research Fellow Africa Projects at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Nairobi (Kenya)

9/2010 – 11/2010 Seconded Legal Consultant to the GTZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit) Juba (South Sudan)

8/2008 – 8/2010 Research Fellow Africa Projects at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg (Germany)

4/2000 – 2/2008 Student Assistant and Research Fellow at the German Institute for Federal Studies, University of Hannover (Germany)

9/2007 Second State Examination in Law, Celle (Germany)

9/2005 – 8/2007 Civil and Judicial Training Programme, Celle and Speyer (Germany) and Nairobi (Kenya)

3/2005 First State Examination in Law, Hanover (Germany)

10/2002 – 3/2003 Dissertation for the Master of European Law on the topic “Devolution in the United Kingdom, a Federal Development?”, Hannover (Germany)

8/2001 – 6/2002 Research Studies of European Law at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow (United Kingdom)

10/1999 – 3/2005 Studies of Law and European Law at the Leibniz University, Hanover (Germany)

10/1997 – 3/1999 Studies of History and Literature at the Martin-Luther University, Halle/Saale (Germany)


  • Somalia unter seiner Übergangsverfassung von 2004. In: Scholz, Peter/Naeem, Naseef (Eds.): Jahrbuch für Verfassung, Recht und Staat im islamischen Kontext. Nomos Verlag, Baden-Baden 2011, pp. 105–136.
  • Somalia, Conflict. In: Wolfrum, Rüdiger (Hrsg.): Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2008–2013 (last article update July 2013) Access 4 September 2014 Further information

Participation in Conferences

  • 20–21 Apr. 2012 “Elections, Accountability, and Democratic Governancein Africa”, annual symposium of the Institute for African Development at the Cornell University, NY (USA) (presentation)
  • 7–11 Jan. 2012 “Constitutional Expert Forum” on options for a new Constitution for Somalia, conference organised by the UNDP Somalia/UNPOS Joint Constitution Unit (organisation, presentation and panel chair)
  • 27–29 Nov. 2008 Federalism and Decentralisation – Options for Somalia, conference organised by UNDP Somalia (participation)