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Intercultural Dialogue

A child holding a globe in its hands.

In the future, the international context will play a more important role in our work, and a central topic will be the promotion of tolerance among the world's cultures. In addition to new economic trends, globalization is also causing a pluralization of norms and values. Societies everywhere are becoming more multicultural, with cross-cultural contacts now an everyday event. On the one hand, opportunities for cultural participation are on the rise; on the other, the potential for intercultural tension is also increasing. Whenever conflicting world views, values or lifestyles come into contact, fear or disorientation can result. Against this background, we develop solutions designed to prevent the "clash of civilizations" from becoming a self-fulfilling prophesy.


Focus Areas

Cultural Conflicts

Cultural conflicts are playing a greater role in everyday politics, in particular the transition from traditional to modern social structures, the relationship between government and religion, differences between western and non-western world views, and opposing notions of religious salvation. We examine the role of culture, values and identity within these cultural conflicts, as well as the conflicts' frequency, participants, location and intensity. Our findings serve as input to the international discourse on these subjects and to the development of solutions that are meaningful on a global level.

Seeing the earth from space

Global Visions

As the world grows smaller, new and ever more complex challenges are arising, bringing with them dangers that threaten both the planet Earth and its inhabitants. These challenges are highly interdependent and can only be solved on the global level, yet the global community lacks the awareness, values and institutions necessary to respond to them. In its "Global Visions" focus area, the Bertelsmann Stiftung is therefore taking stock of current global knowledge while promoting international cultural dialogue on issues relating to sustainable development.

Intercultural Competence

When participants lack intercultural competence, international cultural dialogue is unthinkable. In the view of the Bertelsmann Stiftung, the ability to deal constructively on an interpersonal level with cultural diversity and divergent values will establish itself in coming years as a key prerequisite for managers working in international organizations. Intercultural competence can thus be seen as an overall goal of personal development efforts and, as a result, a key factor in experiencing cultural diversity as a positive resource.   


Related Projects

Contact Person
Portrait of Peter Walkenhorst Peter Walkenhorst
+49 5241 81-81172
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