The project funded by the German Ministry of Science and Education investigates the emergence of democratic distanced views in a community using the example of the Berlin district of Marzahn-Hellersdorf. In this context, interviews are to be conducted to identify the attitudes and strategies with which different groups of the population react to social issues. It should also be clarified whether there is a connection with the provision of formal and informal education.
Based on the findings of engagement research and the analysis of processes of democracy development in other cities and countries, a process of socio-spatial democracy development is being tried out and established in Marzahn-Hellersdorf. The findings from the project will be evaluated and prepared for the consultation of other cities and municipalities.
Project duration: 01.10.2017 until 31.03.2020
The project aims at an inventory and and an analysis of the potentials of the voluntary, honorary and civic participation in the Berlin regional branch of the welfare association Parity. The work consists of an analysis of documents, a quantitative survey and qualitative interviews with experts. The product will be a report with recommendations and comparisons with the two previous surveys.
Project duration: October 2018 until October 2019
Democratic distanced attitudes have become increasingly visible in the Federal Republic of Germany since September 2015. The currently perceived developments are largely unexplored. In the district of Marzahn-Hellersdorf, the reception of a large number of refugees and the establishment of asylum seekers' homes led to a resurgence of racist resentment and the success of right-wing populist parties. This makes Marzahn-Hellersdorf an example of a phenomenon that is discussed nationwide under the term "rabid citizens".
This project investigates how democratic distanced attitudes can emerge. Based on the research results, target group-specific recommendations for action are to be developed in order to counter democratic distanced and anti-democratic attitudes.
Project duration: 15.03.2017 until 31.12.2018
In 2018 the Europe Institute for Social Work has conducted a survey among the visitors of the Berlin Center for Civic Education. The survey was aimed to investigate the utilization behavior, the satisfaction and the preferences of the visitors of the Center for Civic Education. A main focus was to find out changes as compared to the surveys of the years 2010 and 2004.
Projece duration: March to September 2018
Based on semi-structured qualitative interviews with local players, migrants and other groups, an action plan for socio-spatial development of democracy has been worked out. The focus is on possibilities for democratic participation of society on the local political level and the struggle against experiences of discrimination and racist manifestations. The developed action plan will serve as a basis for discussions on the further development of democracy in the district. The research project
has been funded by the German Lottery Foundation Berlin and was conducted with the cooperation of the district-office Marzahn-Hellersdorf from January 2014 to January 2015.
The White Task Force (WIT) project was initiated to deepen "Innovations in social work" as a result of social changes in Europe. The project uses valuable advice from Italian, Bulgarian and Lithuanian projects, initiatives and working methods, which are relevant for this field.
A main focus lays on the consequences of changed structure of families, changes in labor relations and financing of social change in a time of budget cuts. The project started in December 2013 and will end in December 2014. Further information:
In recent years, several new instruments to increase democratic participation have been established replacing conventional forms of political participation, e.g. in political parties and trade unions. In many places, this form of "revitalization of democracy" is accompanied by a restriction of the municipal possibilities of action due to lack of resources. However, these instruments are less used by the general population, but often used in active networks and by (social) media players. Political participation is increasingly becoming a privilege of those who show the necessary social and material resources. How can the "splitting of civil society" be countered?
First of all, an overview of existing instruments in Berlin and the districts has been conducted to examine these in terms of their strengths and weaknesses. Also, a proposal has been developed including a description of the quality of democratic coexistence in Berlin. This Project started in June 2014 and ended in December 2014.
The evaluation measured the effectiveness of the activities of the Action Programme for Master Plan "work and training for all young people in Marzahn-Hellersdorf 2016" and will gave feedback regarding whether and how improvements can be made. The results of the investigation were made public in a comprehensive research report. In addition, a result brochure was created, which is to inform not only professionals, but also the general audience. The research results have been presented and discussed in two events all involved and interested. The Project has been funded by the EU PROGRESS program, started in July 2014 and ended in April 2015.