We present a natural deduction proof system for the propositional modal μ-calculus and its formalization in the calculus of inductive constructions. We address several problematic issues, such as the use of higher-order abstract syntax in inductive sets in the presence of recursive constructors, and the formalization of modal (sequent-style) rules and of context sensitive grammars. The formalization can be used in the system Coq, providing an experimental computer-aided proof environment for the interactive development of error-free proofs in the modal μ-calculus. The techniques we adopt can be readily ported to other languages and proof systems featuring similar problematic issues. © 2001 Academic Press.