The Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History focusses on the development and application of new scientific methods to produce an integrated science of human history. It bridges the gap between history and natural sciences by bringing together biologists, linguists and social scientists to apply cutting-edge genetic sequencing and computational advances from the natural sciences while still maintaining the highest standards of scholarship from the humanities. This thoroughly integrated, interdisciplinary approach will allow long-standing questions about human history that were previously deemed difficult, or even completely intractable, to be resolved.
Founding directors are Johannes Krause (Department of Archeogenetics) and Russell Gray (Department of Linguistic and Cultural Evolution).
The institute supplants from the former Max Planck Institute of Economics
. In connection with the scientific reorientation, the institute was given the name of the Max Planck Institute for History and the Sciences in March 2014. In order to better reflect the research being done by the directors and their departments, the senate of the Max Planck Society has decided to change the name to the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History on November 21, 2014.