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Sustainability requires that decisions be made - not in the distant future, but now.

Marlehn Thieme, Chairwoman of the Council

Marlehn Thieme

The principle of sustainability is the only option for responsible global action; it protects our eco-systems and thus ensures the survival of generations to come.

Olaf Tschimpke, Deputy Chairman of the Council

Olaf Tschimpke

Measuring sustainability is a key success factor to establish environment, social, and governance (ESG) issues in companies and on capital markets.

Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen

A balance between economy, ecology, and social responsibility can only be achieved through cooperation between society, politics, the economy, and each individual.

Vera Gäde-Butzlaff, Member of the Council


Sustainability first and foremost means to go beyond immediate utility and think in the long term, which requires assuming responsibility for the future.

Alois Glück, Member of the Council

Alois Gück

Education is the basis for establishing sustainability as the guiding principle behind our activities, as are more action partnerships and practical examples at the local, regional and international level.

Walter Hirche, Member of the Council

Walter Hirche

To create quality of life and reduce the consumption of resources it involves requires that we take further steps in incorporating sustainability in everyday action as employees, consumers, and citizens.

Kathrin Menges, Member of the Council

Kathrin Menges

Sustainable development requires moving the fight against climate change to the center of social and economic transformation - not only in Germany but worldwide.

Jennifer Morgan, Member of the Council

Jennifer Morgan

The Energiewende has reduced the costs of green energy severely. It thus is competitive internationally and contributes to achieve global sustainability goals without additional CO2 emissions.

Alexander Müller, Member of the Council

Alexander Müller

Sustainable consumption behaviour will continue to be embraced merely by a dedicated minority for as long as the wrong incentives are provided and structures fail to support it.

Prof. Dr. Lucia A. Reisch, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Lucia A. Reisch

A balanced world has been a must for the Club of Rome since 1972– the challenge for our work at the German Council for Sustainable Development.

Max Schön, Member of the Council

Max Schön

Today, sustainable development requires an agenda which explicitly links global and national goals and policies and thus gives global cooperation a strong push forward.

Dr. Imme Scholz, Member of the Council

Dr. Imme Scholz

Cities, even more so than today, will become hubs of technological and social development in the future. All the more important are efforts to encourage the sustainable development of our cities.

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schuster, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schuster

Sustainability necessitates reason and responsibility in our social, ecological and economic actions.

Michael Vassiliadis, Member of the Council

Michael Vassiliadis

We need to make bold political decisions that reward growth less and sustainability more and that encourage the common good instead of profit-seeking.

Prof. Dr. Hubert Weiger, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Hubert Weiger

Without images of the future that allow us to imagine what the quality of life in a sustainable modernity might look like, we are neither able to conceive of an active role of politics in shaping it nor the role of civil society in a political process to that end.

Prof. Dr. Harald Welzer, Coopted member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Harald Welzer


Youth Project 2002

The Council for Sustainable Development, together with young people, developed a book "Young people write about the future" that accompanied the German government on its way to Johannesburg to the World Summit for Sustainable Development in summer 2002.

Within the framework of a national creative writing competition, numerous youth groups had applied for participation in the writing workshops of the Sustainability Council’s book project. Unfortunately, not every contestant could be taken into consideration.

The creative writing workshops were held in Hamburg together with the Educational Centre of the Werkstatt3 and young people from various Hamburg schools, in the 'Landkreis' Leipzig with young people of the secondary and grammar school Borna and the secondary school Markkleeberg and Böhlen, in Siegerland with the Association for Social Work and Culture South Westphalia e.V., in Großräschen together with the IBA (International Building Exhibition) and the Grammar and Comprehensive School Großräschen and the Secondary Modern School Senftenberg, in Essen at the comprehensive School Holtershausen and in Münster at the Pascal Grammar School. In expert tutorials, the participants were introduced to situational and creative writing and supported in compiling their individual pieces on the topic of 'sustainability'. Many individual persons had also sent in their contributions to the editing staff by the final date for entries on 1 May 2002.



At the Council’s Annual Congress "The Next Step", some of the young authors had the opportunity to present their works in advance to a large audience and the Federal Ministers Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul and Jürgen Trittin. Their texts impressed the audience greatly.

On the occasion of the "Open Day of the Federal Government" which was dedicated to the motto of 'Sustainable Development' that year, six young authors handed over the book hot off the press to the state secretary Bury. On a beautiful summer's day in the garden of the German chancellery, there was enough time for discussions and readings from the book. The young people were able to discuss the interrelation of culture and sustainability with the State Secretary for Cultural Affairs, Julian Nida-Rümelin.

In January 2003, the book appeared in its second edition in the Ökom Publishing Company (ISBN 3-928244-91-4, price 14.80 €).

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