Press Release 07/25/2017

Majority of German voters do not hold populist views

Gütersloh, July 25, 2017. People with fundamentally anti-establishment and anti-pluralist attitudes are not in the majority in Germany. Although almost 30 percent of the country's voters hold populist views, most voters reject populist positions (36.9 percent) or endorse them only to a limited extent (33.9 percent). One notable finding is that Germany’s populists tend to be moderate and do not endorse radical ideas. They do not fundamentally reject democratic institutions or those of the EU, but merely criticize their functioning. "The political climate in the run-up to the federal election is anything but 'a populist moment'," says Aart De Geus, CEO and Chairman of the Bertelsmann Stiftung. This becomes even more obvious with regards to the rejection of radical populist priorities by the eligble voters: "For established political parties, catering to extremist populist opinions in their election campaigns is not worthwhile," adds Robert Vehrkamp, democracy expert at the Bertelsmann Stiftung, who authored the study together with Christopher Wratil (University of Cologne).

Press Releases

show all
Italian G7 Presidency 2017 - G7 Summit on / Wikimedia Commons - CC BY 3.0 it,

Press Release 07/06/2017

Ahead of G20 summit: 'my country first' approach threatens achievement of global goals

Gütersloh, 6 July 2017. Ahead of the G20 meeting in Hamburg the newly published SDG Index and Dashboards Report 2017 illustrates that world leaders need to strengthen their joint efforts to realize the global goals. Not only does a rising trend of nationalism and protectionism impede the implementation of the goals, but as the report shows, industrialized countries are not serving as role models. Many of the richest countries in the world are nowhere near achieving the global policy objectives but also deteriorate the implementation process for poorer countries because of negative spillover effects. read more

Archiv Bertelsmann Stiftung/Hanse Advice, Tallinn

Press Release 06/29/2017

Reinhard Mohn Prize 2017 awarded to Toomas Hendrik Ilves

Gütersloh, June 29, 2017. Toomas Hendrik Ilves (63), the former president of Estonia, received the Bertelsmann Stiftung's Reinhard Mohn Prize on Thursday. The topic for the 2017 prize was "Smart Country – Connected. Intelligent. Digital." Liz Mohn, vice-chair of the Bertelsmann Stiftung, presented the €200,000 award. "Digitalization must be actively managed every day," she said. "This is a challenge that civil society and policymakers can meet only in dialogue with the business community. Ilves has done exactly that, making him a worthy recipient of the Reinhard Mohn Prize." read more

Neil Howard / Flickr - CC BY-NC 2.0,

Press Release 05/05/2017

France before the election: Polarized voters view future with skepticism

Gütersloh, May 5th 2017. The political gap between French voters is deeper than in the rest of Europe. Compared with the entire EU, the political center in France is considerably smaller and the political margins more pronounced. Every fifth person in France (20 per cent) describes themselves as politically extreme. Some 14 per cent defined themselves as extreme right and 6 per cent as extreme left. That is considerably more than in the EU overall, where 7 per cent of those surveyed placed themselves on the edges of the political spectrum. At the same time, the right-of-center electorate sees the future with greater pessimism than all other voter groups. They also reject politics in their country, feel economically dependent and mostly have anti-European attitudes. In this respect, they are clearly different from voters in the center and on the left. This is the result from the latest edition of eupinions for the 11,021 Europeans asked about their political views: results which are representative for the EU and for France. read more

Besim Mazhiqi

Press Release 04/27/2017

Gütersloh-based NEUE STIMMEN opera competition more international than ever in its anniversary year

Gütersloh – April 27, 2017. Worldwide interest among up-and-coming opera singers for the NEUE STIMMEN International Singing Competition continues to grow. This year, 1,430 singers from 76 nations applied to participate. "The large number of applications is impressive proof of how many young opera talents recognize and are making use of the opportunity that the competition offers," said Liz Mohn, president of NEUE STIMMEN and vice-chairwoman of the Bertelsmann Stiftung Executive Board. "I am indeed a little proud to see the continued high level of recognition given to the international singing competition with its professional and fair conditions, and how it serves as an important bridge between peoples, religions and cultures." read more

Kai Uwe Oesterhelweg

Press Release 04/04/2017

40 Years of Social Engagement

Gütersloh – April 4, 2017. As a successful entrepreneur, Reinhard Mohn felt an obligation to give back to society, and he founded the Bertelsmann Stiftung in 1977 as a result. Through its diverse projects, the foundation addresses issues in the area of business, education, health care, culture, social affairs and democracy. Since its inception, it has invested approximately €1.3 billion in charitable projects. It is currently carrying out some 60 projects and employs about 380 people. read more

Shutterstock/Maria Savenko

Press Release 02/21/2017

Experts criticise lack of educational reforms in EU member states

Gütersloh, February 21, 2017. Many European Union member states are failing to overcome the most urgent socio-political challenges. According to expert opinion, there is a large gap between the reforms required and those actually implemented, particularly when it comes to the education sector and the integration of foreigners. These are the main results from the Bertelsmann Stiftung’s EU Reform Barometer. This study was based on a Europe-wide survey of experts, in which over 1,000 social scientists took part. Socio-political reforms taking place between mid-2014 and the beginning of 2016 were analysed from five different angles: poverty, education, the labour market, social solidarity and non-discrimination, and health. read more

Jelena Rudi Photography

Press Release 01/26/2017

Toomas Hendrik Ilves receives the Reinhard Mohn Prize

Gütersloh, January 26, 2017. This year's Reinhard Mohn Prize "Smart Country: Connected. Intelligent. Digital." will go to Toomas Hendrik Ilves (63), the former President of Estonia. The Bertelsmann Stiftung has awarded Ilves the prize in honor of his pioneering work on the promotion of digitalization in government, education and public services. During his ten-year term of office (2006-2016), Ilves made digital transformation in Estonia a presidential responsibility, pursuing his course consistently and prudently. Estonia is now considered an exemplary digital nation. Ilves will be awarded the prize worth €200,000 at a ceremony in Gütersloh on June 29. read more

Besim Mazhiqi

Press Release 01/23/2017

NEUE STIMMEN International Singing Competition: Application phase has begun

Gütersloh, January 23, 2017. Nadine Sierra, who won first prize at NEUE STIMMEN 2013, is now a successful and established singer in the international opera world. Last season alone, she made a string of successful debuts with the Berlin State Operas, the Met and La Scala, and the American soprano recently signed an exclusive recording contract with Deutsche Grammophon and Universal Music Classics in the US. This year once again, young singers from around the world have the chance to lay the foundation for their own successful career by taking part in the NEUE STIMMEN International Singing Competition. The deadline for applications is March 31. read more

Shutterstock/tonefotografia; Komposition/Illustration: Golden Section Graphics

Press Release 12/12/2016

European companies consider themselves disadvantaged compared to their Asian competitors

Gütersloh, December 12, 2016. The global innovation map is changing rapidly. New technologies, research findings and business models are increasingly originating in emerging Asian countries – China and India, in particular. This development is posing serious challenges for European companies, which need greater support from government and fair framework conditions if they are to respond effectively. Those are the key findings from a study carried out by the Bertelsmann Stiftung in cooperation with the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). The study is based on a survey of top-level executives at major European businesses. read more

Hans Braxmeier / pixabay - Public Domain

Press Release 11/30/2016

Globalisation fears weigh heavily on European voters

Gütersloh, November 30, 2016.  Globalisation fears are dividing Europeans. While a majority of EU citizens (55 percent) see globalisation as an opportunity, just below half of them (45 percent) view it as a danger. The trend that emerged here among the respondents was: the less educated and the older people are, the likelier they are to view globalisation as a danger. These fears of an increasingly ever-closer world are also influencing political attitudes: the vast majority of those respondents who sympathize with right-wing and populist parties regard globalisation as a threat. These are the results of the EU-wide opinion poll "eupinions", which is regularly used by the Bertelsmann Stiftung to ask citizens about EU matters. The opinion poll is representative of the EU and its nine largest member states. read more