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Issues relating to society's strategic goals and its potential solutions play a key role in policy debates. For Western democracies, uncertainty at home is fueled by the challenges resulting from globalization. Policymakers and other societal actors must walk the line between maintaining the status quo and accepting the need for change. In contrast to organizations focusing on primarily partisan and special interests, foundations carrying out independent, issue-oriented work are in a position to develop real, workable solutions.

Focus Areas

Demographic Change

Demographic change is the central challenge facing Germany and our society. The issue of demographic change is increasingly shaping the character of our political and social debate, since the future of our society depends on successfully meeting this challenge. Many decision makers have not yet realized that far more is at stake than securing our social systems.


Modern Government

Given the constant changes impacting their societies, Western democracies now face similar challenges in terms of creating a framework that allows policymakers to respond to these challenges. Whether or not they are successful depends on a variety of factors. While institutional criteria and a country’s political culture provide guideposts for implementing reform, the use of modern governance tools to shape reform processes can greatly expand policymakers’ room for maneuver.    



The future of Europe has become a strategic policymaking activity. We need to set a new course in European policy and then see that it is realized. Shortly after the accession of 10 Central and Eastern European states to the EU, new candidates were already expressing an interest to join. The Bertelsmann Stiftung is analyzing the process of European integration and formulating recommendations for reforming policy management and steering within the enlarged Europe.


International Politics

The world is getting smaller economically, socially, politically. The ability to achieve international understanding is becoming more important as the challenges of our new world transcend national borders. For this reason, the Bertelsmann Stiftung is formulating new approaches to intergovernmental and international governance, developing strategies for peaceful conflict resolution and supporting those countries making their way toward democracy and a market economy.


Related Projects

Keyvisual Politik gemeinsam gestalten

Bertelsmann Stiftung International
Flags of the European Union and the USA.

The Brussels Office of the Bertelsmann Stiftung

Transformation Index BTI 2012

Transformation Index BTI 2012

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