Modus Operandi is an independent institute founded by its current directors in 2006.  The institute carries out research, teaching and organises debates on conflict transformation and political transition.

The main approaches that inspire Modus Operandi’s analysis are political sociology and anthropology as well as conflict analysis. Its work focuses on three themes within the context of post-conflict and post-Soviet countries.  These themes are: state dynamics, political legitimacy and business and conflict. Geographical areas of focus within this work are Southern Africa and the Horn of Africa; post-Soviet Central Asia and Afghanistan. 

Modus Operandi receives funding from the Fondation Charles Léopold Mayer and local funds from Région Rhône-Alpes. Funding is also received on project by project basis, as well as for courses taught.