The commission’s work goal is to combine two innovative scientific approaches with one another. On the one hand, empire as phenomenon should no longer be thought as an organic biological “creature” with a clearly defined beginning and end. Moreover, the various paths of transformation processes that occur in phases of turmoil and crisis ought to be followed. On the other hand, special attention should be drawn on the vast borderlands of imperial state formation as these areas in particular are often entangled actively in transformation processes. The commission’s perspective aims to follow both a longitudinal comparison of the ancient worlds of Afro-Eurasia and to closely assess the Achaemenid Empire as the largest empire of the time. In addition, comparative aspects of post-antique empires should be focused on in order to handle general developments and historic special features better.