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The Foundation

Building of the foundation

Inspiring People. Shaping the Future.

In keeping with the longstanding social commitment of its founder, Reinhard Mohn, the Bertelsmann Stiftung is dedicated to serving the common good. Our work is based on the conviction that competition and civic engagement are essential for social progress.

In accordance with its articles of incorporation, the Bertelsmann Stiftung functions exclusively as a private operating foundation; it carries out its own project work and does not make grants or support third-party projects.

What We Want

The foundation aims to identify social problems and challenges at an early stage and develop exemplary solutions to address them.
Three women pushing a bus


In keeping with the longstanding social commitment of its founder, Reinhard Mohn, the Bertelsmann Stiftung is dedicated to serving the common good.

Reinhard Mohn sitting at a table with family portraits in the background

Our Founder’s Beliefs

Family tradition shaped Reinhard Mohn’s view of humanity and its possibilities.

The word Freiheit (Freedom), handwritten in blue

Our Mission

Our mission statement succinctly explains the Bertelsmann Stiftung’s strategic objectives.

Photo detail of the cupola at the Reichstag building


The Bertelsmann Stiftung is both a think tank and a catalyst for social change.


Who We Are

In keeping with the fundamental beliefs of its founder, Reinhard Mohn, the Bertelsmann Stiftung sees itself as a driver of social change. It is committed to the values of freedom, competition, solidarity and goodwill.
Gray numbered folders

Facts and Figures

Reinhard Mohn established the Bertelsmann Stiftung in 1977.

Headshot of Reinhard Mohn (detail)

Our Founder

Reinhard Mohn spent over 40 years of active professional engagement building Bertelsmann AG.

Podium discussion

Foundation Governance

The Bertelsmann Stiftung is governed by an Executive Board and a Board of Trustees.

Detail from the cover of the publication 25 Jahre Bertelsmann Stiftung – Reformbilanz (25 Years of the Bertelsmann Stiftung – Taking Stock)


The chronicle of the Bertelsmann Stiftung describes its history from its inception to the present.


How We Work

The Bertelsmann Stiftung is a private operating foundation. It invests its budget solely in projects that it conceives, initiates and implements itself.
Meeting with participants discussing a subject

Operating Foundation

The Bertelsmann Stiftung initiates its projects as an independent organization that is neither politically partisan nor beholden to any special interest group.

Crowd of people seen from above

Our Experts

The Bertelsmann Stiftung has a highly qualified staff of about 300 employees.

Round table with telephones on top

Our Projects

The Bertelsmann Stiftung is currently involved in more than 60 projects.

Tack with note

Our Principles

In carrying out our work, we adhere to the "Principles of Good Practice" developed by the Association of German Foundations.


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