(© Veit Mette)

DIVERSITY IN GERMANY: Integration begins in the community

Demographic change in Germany primarily manifests as a decrease in the size of the population and an increase in its age. In other words, Germany is becoming home to fewer people who on average are growing older. In addition, the composition of the population is changing as a result of immigration, which is necessary to ensure the country’s future. The result is a more diverse society. Whether and how the country’s diverse inhabitants can learn to live together as one can be seen most readily at the community level. Which strategies can cities and towns use to help people who are not German become part of German society?

(© Arne Weychardt)


Local structures for senior care and networks that bring the relevant participants together are two possible solutions to mold demographic change in communities.

für den Flyer Wegweiser Kommune(© madochab /

FUTURE-ORIENTED SENIOR POLICY: Innovative approaches for housing and support

The focus here is intergenerational, community-based housing and support – which are critical for safeguarding a sustainable future for Germany.

01_achenbach_demografie-0575.jpg(© Valeska Achenbach)

SCIENCE YEAR 2015: City of the Future

Organized by the German Ministry for Education and Research, Science Year 2015 is dedicated to the topic “City of the Future.” For many people, cities are the center of their lives and their everyday experiences; where people work, relax, learn and participate in cultural activities. Cities are also where issues critical to society’s future make themselves felt: good jobs, climate protection, sustainable transportation, health, immigration and demographic change, to name but a few. They are also where responses to these challenges are being rethought and reworked.

SHAPING COMMUNITIES: Ensuring quality of life in communities

Communities and regions undergoing demographic change compete with each other, not only for inhabitants and good job opportunities, but also for the factors that make them attractive locations to live and work. The impacts of demographic change are diverse.

RMP_2013_11_06_Symposium_A01B4920_High Res_95832_BEARB.jpg(© © Jan Voth)

: Reinhard Mohn Prize

Innovative approaches, effective solutions, outstanding role models


Encouraging Engagement: „jungbewegt – For Engagement and Democracy."

Democracy means: living, thinking, acting in freedom. Only those who are committed to values such as tolerance, solidarity and freedom of opinion accept responsibility for the common good. "jungbewegt" promotes commitment, participation and democracy education in daycare centers, schools and youth facilities and links political and social learning.

(© franckreporter /


We measure social cohesion, thus providing a better understanding of current societal trends. We help communities activate their potential in strengthening cohesion and foster partnerships that improve communal life.

Illu_SGI_Twitter_TrueSustainableGovernance-Web_300dpi_ST_NW.jpg(© Pia Bublies/Bertelsmann Stiftung)

SUSTAINABLE GOVERNANCE INDICATORS: How fit for the future are the OECD and EU states?

We believe good governance and sustainable development go hand-in-hand. We also believe in mutual learning. As a cross-national comparative survey designed to identify and foster successes in effective policymaking, the SGI explores how governments target sustainable development.

20951125245_bdcac9c9e3_o.jpg(© Victor Choueiri / Flickr - CC BY-NC 2.0,

Project description: Searching for successful strategies of change

There is no guarantee for sucess in change processes to democracy under a rule of law and a market economy equipped with sociopolitical safeguards: stagnation, power struggles and state failure are jeopardizing countries on their complex path of transformation. But there are also encouraging examples of good governance in every world region. Since 2003, the BTI is monitoring where and how change is happening.