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Lucid. Berlin

Adressing conflicting goals: Making everyone a part of growth

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Thomas Kunsch

, Managing conflicting goals: Making everyone a part of growth

The German economy is as strong as ever. Nonetheless, the inequalities between specific groups, generations and regions are growing. As a business location, Germany needs an agenda for inclusive growth that enables everyone to tap their potential and generates greater investment in our future.

The German economy is as strong as ever. Nonetheless, the inequalities between specific groups, generations and regions are growing. As a business location, Germany needs an agenda for inclusive growth that enables everyone to tap their potential and generates greater investment in our future.

Compared with many of its European partners, Germany is doing well economically. But a narrow focus on economic growth alone is misleading, as the growth of recent years has not been inclusive. In fact, inequalities across social groups and regions are growing, which has a corrosive effect on societal cohesion. At the same time, we are currently living at the expense of future generations. Our living standards are undermining future generations’ opportunities and potential. And the budgetary cuts needed make it all the more difficult to invest in promising growth areas.

Clearly, Germany must set its sights on a new growth agenda, an agenda for inclusive growth. Above all, this involves ensuring that economic performance targets be harmonized with the performance and long-term durability of its social, fiscal and ecological systems. Yet achieving this is difficult, as there are conflicting objectives involved.

Adressing conflicting goals

The complexity of these conflicting objectives should not be underestimated as they involve a variety of policy areas and the interests of several different groups in society. Yet we can achieve inclusive growth only if and when stakeholders from politics, business and society alike purposefully address these conflicts and work together. Far too many conflicting objectives remain inadequately addressed or ignored altogether. This not only tears at the fabric of our society but undermines Germany‘s prospects as a business location which, in turn, will have a negative impact on the well-being of our society.

Our “Inclusive Growth” project focuses on two key conflicts:

  • Inequality dynamics: We need to balance the effects of economic cycles with the demands involved in ensuring broad based social inclusion.
  • Investing in the future: We need to make decisions regarding the relationship between urgently needed debt reduction and the need to invest in the future so as to ensure continued economic performance.

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