The Bertelsmann Stiftung holds 76.9 percent of Bertelsmann AG shares

Since Bertelsmann AG has bought back the 25.1-percent ownership interest of Groupe Bruxelles Lambert, the Bertelsmann Stiftung now holds 76.9 percent of Bertelsmann AG shares, with 23.1 percent held by the Mohn family. Voting rights are held exclusively by Bertelsmann Verwaltungsgesellschaft (BVG).

2006 Carl Bertelsmann Prize:Active agingin economy and society

The 2006 Carl Bertelsmann Prize goes to Finland.The prize recognizes "Older Workers," a national program initiated by the Finnish government in cooperation with the business community, unions, trade associations and academic specialists to improve employment conditions for senior citizens.The prize was awarded based on the results of an international study carried out by Prognos AG on behalf of the Bertelsmann Stiftung.According to the study, other countries with exemplary programs for older workers include Australia, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.By putting in place consistent labor-market policies, these nations have been able to significantly increase gainful employment among workers aged 55 to 64.

2006 International Bertelsmann Forum on "Europe's strategic responses"

International Bertelsmann Forum from September 22 to 23, 2006, at the "Weltsaal" of the German Foreign Office. Among the participants (from left): Liz Mohn, Manuel Barroso, Angela Merkel, Dominique de Villepin and Gunter Thielen.

Dr. Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission, calls for a special summit meeting to discuss the future of the European constitution; French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin unveils a surprising proposal for Europe’s energy security; and German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel puts forth a plan outlining a number of key points.More than 150 representatives of 35 countries, including 20 heads of state and government and 14 foreign and defense ministers, accept the Bertelsmann Stiftung’s invitation to discussions at the Foreign Ministry in Berlin.Particularly notable, for veteran observers of the political scene, is the event’s format:It offers an opportunity for scholars, business leaders and international opinion leaders to meet directly with the responsible policymakers and think about Europe’s future, free of the constraints of day-to-day politics and pre-formulated communiques.The conference’s unique structure provides a venue for discussing the many diverse challenges facing Europe.Deliberations focus first of all on the world’s crisis regions.

10th Kronberg Talks on "Europe and the Middle East – New ways and solutions for old problems and challenges"

Among the greatest global challenges, from the perspective of security and crisis management, are the political, territorial, social, economic and ideological conflicts in the Middle East.These are no longer the familiar "state versus state" conflicts, but rather confrontations with non-state groups.Such groups have social and political roots, and engage in conflict either independently or as agents of other entities.The result: Governments are in danger of toppling, states may collapse – and people may be forced to flee their homes.

The role of religion in modern society

On January 19, 2006, the Bertelsmann Stiftung launches its new project on "The role of religion in modern society" in Berlin.The foundation has invited politicians, theologians and sociologists to a conference to exchange ideas about this topic and discuss strategic approaches.There is a great deal of talk about a "return" of religion.At the Bertelsmann Stiftung conference, however, Bishop Wolfgang Huber, chair of the Council of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD), points out that the idea of a "return" implies that religion has been absent – and this is not true, he contends.Unlike Jürgen Habermas, he does not view the global society – or Germany – as post-secular.Instead, he says, it is more accurate to say that religion is undergoing revitalization.Looking at the rituals of ancient Rome, he also draws the self-critical conclusion that such rituals are necessary if people are to feel at home in their faith.Huber encourages churches to rediscover their missionary role.

Establishment of the Reinhard Mohn Stiftung

This charitable foundation is headed by Reinhard Mohn's son Christoph, and focuses primarily on supporting projects in the Eastern Westphalia region.Under its articles of association, the foundation is permitted to engage in a broad range of activities, such as providing funding for institutions and activities in the areas of social services, education, culture and international understanding.