Demographic change is one of the major trends that are strongly influencing the way we live together in today's society. Various factors are causing changes in the composition of our population: The birth rate in Germany has been low for several decades. At the same time, life expectancy has increased: Statistically, people today are living approxiely 15 years longer than they did in 1950. And our country has become an immigration country, primarily one for the current influx of refugees. The influence of internal migration upon community life in the countryside and in the city must not be underestimated.
If our society is ageing and its origins and lifestyles are becoming more diverse, what implications does this have for our social interaction? How do we create more social justice? How can we recruit new people for the employment market? Who will look after the interests of others if the population is dwindling? The Körber Foundation addresses such issues with its activities, events and publications – and also encourages people to see the opportunities presented by these changes.
The Foundation itself is also investigating new and constructive solutions in the light of demographic change: It supports local politics and administration on the path to becoming a demographically strong city and initiates networks for involvement. It promotes the potential of the older generation to employers and presents models for integration and diversity. It promotes citizen participation and brings together civil society, the economy and the state in new alliances. And last but not least, the Körber Foundation operates its own culture and district centre for the participation of the 50 plus generation.
Innovations are prerequisites for the existence and success of modern societies. They ensure their sustainability, form the basis for prosperity and are essential for addressing key problems of humanity.
The Körber foundation therefore explores the conditions and processes under which the new emerges, invests in young talent, honours innovative approaches and shapes the framework conditions for a society open to innovation.
However, innovations are also dependent on a society that is prepared to change and to deal with the new. Because of this the Körber Foundation also considers it important to discuss the opportunities and risks of innovation processes and to promote a climate of critical openness. To this end, the foundation provides platforms: In conferences, publications and expert networks the Körber Foundation drives the debate forward with operational ideas and its own expertise.
Crucial ideas for innovation repeatedly come from the sciences and the arts. In creative trials and inquiring approaches they not only bring about the new, they are also drivers of society's ongoing understanding of itself. The Körber Foundation therefore pays particular attention to them and their associated education and mediation processes. Innovations are dependent on both inventiveness and drive – a combination that proves itself specifically in such diverse projects as STEM education and cultural education.
Talk with, not about each other!
For over 50 years, the Körber Foundation has been committed to international dialogue and dialogue across political, national and religious boundaries. We help to build bridges to overcome the absence of discussion and to initiate debate.
We strengthen constructive dialogue with dialogue formats, competitions and encounters – open-ended, on equal terms and transparently. In doing so, we focus on diversity and inclusiveness. We shed light on the historical aspects of current conflicts and highlight both civil society and foreign and security policy perspectives for overcoming them. To this end, we examine different identities and promote a culture of mutual recognition in international relations. We sound out the scope for political action and show specific ways of working together. In this way we contribute to the identification of common values and interests and to the building of trust.
Our target groups are social thinkers, (foreign) political decision-makers and multipliers of international dialogue. We place particular emphasis on strengthening the capacity for dialogue of decision-makers in the next generation. We take our programmes around Europe, the Middle East and Asia. We are primarily concerned with Eastern Europe and the role of Russia in the European context, as well as with regional conflicts in the Middle East and the rise of China.