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The Friedrich Ebert Foundation ( German: Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung; Abbreviation: FES) is a German political foundation associated with the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), yet independent of it. Established in 1925 as the political legacy of Friedrich Ebert, Germany's first democratically elected President, it is the largest and oldest of the German party-associated foundations. It is headquartered in Bonn and Berlin, and has offices and projects in over 100 countries. It is Germany's oldest organisation to promote democracy, political education, and promote students of outstanding intellectual abilities and personality.
German is a West Germanic language that is mainly spoken in Central Europe. It is the most widely spoken and official or co-official language in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, South Tyrol (Italy), the German-speaking Community of Belgium, and Liechtenstein. It is also one of the three official languages of Luxembourg and a co-official language in the Opole Voivodeship in Poland. The languages which are most similar to German are the other members of the West Germanic language branch: Afrikaans, Dutch, English, the Frisian languages, Low German/Low Saxon, Luxembourgish, and Yiddish. There are also strong similarities in vocabulary with Danish, Norwegian and Swedish, although those belong to the North Germanic group. German is the second most widely spoken Germanic language, after English.
The Social Democratic Party of Germany, or SPD, is a social-democratic political party in Germany.
Friedrich Ebert was a German politician of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) and the first President of Germany from 1919 until his death in office in 1925.
The FES was named for Friedrich Ebert (1871–1925), the Social Democratic President of Germany, 1919-1925. In his will, he specified that the proceeds from donations at his funeral should be used to create a foundation. The SPD chairman at the time, Konrad Ludwig, was given the responsibility of building this foundation, which he did a few days after Ebert's death in 1925. The main concern of the foundation was to work against discrimination of workers in the area of education: "The Friedrich Ebert Foundation pursues the goal of giving young, empowered proletarians government aid to fund an education at state-accredited institutions. As a basic principle, only those people who have a recommendation from the party organisation will receive funding." (SPD Yearbook 1926) By the end of 1931, 295 students had been funded with over 52,000 marks. Unfortunately, at this point the funding of the foundation fell through, as a result of the Great Depression. The FES was a section of the Social Democratic Education and Culture Organisation, and was banned along with the party itself in 1933 by the Nazis. In 1946, the FES was reinstituted at the founding assembly of the Socialist German Student Federation. In 1954, the FES was restructured into a charitable organisation "for the advancement of democratic education". This established the FES as an independent, self-contained institute. In addition to education programmes, the FES has also worked in the area of development aid since the 1960s. In this effort, it has supported democracy and freedom movements, for instance in the African National Congress (ANC), and played an important role in overcoming dictatorial regimes in Greece, Spain, and Portugal. Thus it was not a coincidence that the Socialist Party of Portugal was formed in an FES school in the German town of Bad Münstereifel.
The President of Germany, officially the Federal President of the Federal Republic of Germany, is the head of state of Germany.
The Deutsche Mark, abbreviated "DM" or
The Great Depression was a severe worldwide economic depression that took place mostly during the 1930s, beginning in the United States. The timing of the Great Depression varied across nations; in most countries it started in 1929 and lasted until the late-1930s. It was the longest, deepest, and most widespread depression of the 20th century. In the 21st century, the Great Depression is commonly used as an example of how intensely the world's economy can decline.
The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Academic Foundation (FES) is one of eleven organizations for the promotion of young talents (Begabtenförderwerke) in Germany. Only 1% of German students achieve a scholarship at one of the eleven organizations (i.e. FES, Studienstiftung, Konrad Adenauer Foundation).It is financially funded and subsidized by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and supports students with outstanding academical and political achievements. Awards are granted after a multi-stage selection process and are based on grades, letters of recommendation, letters of motivation, political and social engagement as well as personality and character. Until today it has sponsored more than 12,000 grantees. Over 90% of those sponsored graduate with honours. In 2005, there were 1,731 students in the programme, of which 51% were women. Beyond the financial support, grantees also receive so-called ideational support, which comes from opportunities to attend political seminars, conferences, and other activities, which can be important job qualifications. The FES kept its own conference center on the Venusberg in Bonn for these activities until its closure in 2009. Each year, the grantees vote for a board during the nationwide conference at the Stresemann Institute in Bonn. This board serves for the next full year as the representation of grantees for dialog with the foundation. The FES maintains a website ( www.fes-stip.de) for networking among grantees, which includes a wide variety of mailing lists, services, and communications tools.
The German Academic Scholarship Foundation is Germany's largest, oldest and most prestigious scholarship foundation. In line with its statutes, it supports "the university education of young people who, on account of their exceptional academic or artistic talents and their personalities, can be expected to make an outstanding contribution to society as a whole". The Studienstiftung is non-political, non-denominational and ideologically independent. Its headquarters are located in Bonn; it also has an office in Berlin. The current president is Reinhard Zimmermann, and it operates under the auspices of the President of Germany, Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V. is a German political party foundation associated with but independent of the centrist Christian Democratic Union (CDU). The foundation's headquarters are located in Sankt Augustin near Bonn. Globally, the KAS has 78 offices and runs programs in over 100 countries. Its current chairman is the former President of the German parliament Deutscher Bundestag, Norbert Lammert. It is a member of the Centre for European Studies, the official foundation and think tank of the European People's Party (EPP).
The Federal City of Bonn is a city on the banks of the Rhine in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, with a population of over 300,000. About 24 km (15 mi) south-southeast of Cologne, Bonn is in the southernmost part of the Rhine-Ruhr region, Germany's largest metropolitan area, with over 11 million inhabitants. It is famously known as the birthplace of Ludwig van Beethoven in 1770. Beethoven spent his childhood and teenage years in Bonn.
Students are assigned advisors who work with them for the length of their grants, and also belong to a student organisation.
Today, the Friedrich Ebert Foundation's main goals are to promote political and societal education of people from all walks of life in the spirit of democracy and pluralism, to enable young people the opportunity to study and do research through grants, and to work toward international understanding and cooperation.
The foundation employs several hundred employees in their offices in Bonn and Berlin, as well as in 14 regional offices and an academy within Germany and in over 100 foreign agencies. It is financed mainly through grants from the federal budget and the budgets of the various Bundesländer.
Berlin is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,748,148 (2018) inhabitants make it the second most populous city proper of the European Union after London. The city is one of Germany's 16 federal states. It is surrounded by the state of Brandenburg, and contiguous with its capital, Potsdam. The two cities are at the center of the Berlin-Brandenburg capital region, which is, with about six million inhabitants and an area of more than 30,000 km², Germany's third-largest metropolitan region after the Rhine-Ruhr and Rhine-Main regions.
Germany is a federal republic consisting of sixteen states. Since today's Germany was formed from an earlier collection of several states, it has a federal constitution, and the constituent states retain a measure of sovereignty. With an emphasis on geographical conditions, Berlin and Hamburg are frequently called Stadtstaaten (city-states), as is the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, which in fact includes the cities of Bremen and Bremerhaven. The remaining 13 states are called Flächenländer.
Since 1971, foreign students have also had the opportunity to receive grants through solidarity funds. Preference for these grants goes to people who are persecuted on political, racial or religious grounds. Funding for this program comes exclusively from donations from current and former grantees. The program have helped over 1,000 students. Currently there are 31 students who are in the solidarity programme. Two grantees from this programme are chosen every year at the conference in Bonn to work on the steering committee of the fund.
The historical research center of the foundation also contains the Archive of Social Democracy and its libraries in Bonn and at the Karl Marx House in Trier. This is one of the largest collections of documents on social history and the history of the workers movement.
The Karl Marx House museum is a writer's house museum in Trier. In 1818, Karl Marx, the father of modern socialism and communism, was born in the house. It is now a museum about Karl Marx's life and writings as well as the history of communism.
Trier, formerly known in English as Treves and Triers, is a city in Germany on the banks of the Moselle. Trier lies in a valley between low vine-covered hills of red sandstone in the west of the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, near the border with Luxembourg and within the important Moselle wine region. The German philosopher and one of the founders of Marxism, Karl Marx was born in the city in 1818.
Social history, often called the new social history, is a field of history that looks at the lived experience of the past. In its "golden age" it was a major growth field in the 1960s and 1970s among scholars, and still is well represented in history departments in Britain, Canada, France, Germany, and the United States. In the two decades from 1975 to 1995, the proportion of professors of history in American universities identifying with social history rose from 31% to 41%, while the proportion of political historians fell from 40% to 30%. In the history departments of British and Irish universities in 2014, of the 3410 faculty members reporting, 878 (26%) identified themselves with social history while political history came next with 841 (25%).
Since 1982, the foundation has awarded a prize of 10,000 euro called "The Political Book" to promote noteworthy political books. The prize serves to remind people of the Nazi book burnings of May 10, 1933.
The Nazi book burnings were a campaign conducted by the German Student Union to ceremonially burn books in Nazi Germany and Austria in the 1930s. The books targeted for burning were those viewed as being subversive or as representing ideologies opposed to Nazism. These included books written by Jewish, pacifist, religious, classical liberal, anarchist, socialist, and communist authors, among others. The first books burned were those of Karl Marx and Karl Kautsky.
The Christian Democratic Union of Germany is a Christian-democratic, liberal-conservative political party in Germany. It is the major catch-all party of the centre-right in German politics. The CDU forms the CDU/CSU grouping, also known as the Union, in the Bundestag with its Bavarian counterpart the Christian Social Union in Bavaria (CSU). The party is widely considered an effective successor of the Centre Party, although it has a broader base.
Franz Müntefering is a German politician and industrial manager. He was Chairman of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) from 2004 to 2005 and again from 18 October 2008 to 13 November 2009. He served as Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, as well as Vice-Chancellor, from 2005 to 2007.
The social market economy, also called Rhine capitalism, is a socioeconomic model combining a free market capitalist economic system alongside social policies that establish both fair competition within the market and a welfare state. It is sometimes classified as a coordinated market economy. The social market economy was originally promoted and implemented in West Germany by the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) under Chancellor Konrad Adenauer in 1949. Its origins can be traced to the interwar Freiburg school of economic thought.
Holger Börner was a German politician of the SPD.
The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (FNF), is a German foundation for liberal politics, related to the Free Democratic Party. Established in 1958 by Theodor Heuss, the first president of the Federal Republic of Germany, it promotes individual freedom and liberalism. Usually still referred to as the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, the foundation supplemented its name in 2007 with the words "for Freedom".
Erich Ollenhauer was the leader of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) 1952–1963.
The CSU-associated Hanns Seidel Foundation is a German party-associated and taxpayer-money funded political research foundation. It was founded in November 1966 after most of the other party-associated foundations in Germany were already established. It is headquartered in Munich. The conference centre in the Banz Abbey is the foundation's main location. It is a member of the Centre for European Studies, the official foundation and think tank of the European People's Party. It is named after the CSU politician Hanns Seidel.
Konrad Haenisch was a German Social Democratic Party politician and part of "the radical Marxist Left" of German politics. He was a friend and follower of Alexander Parvus.
The Heinrich Böll Foundation is a German, legally independent political foundation. Affiliated with the German Green Party, it was founded in 1997 when three predecessors merged. The foundation was named after German writer Heinrich Böll (1917–1985).
Die Neue Zeit was a German socialist theoretical journal of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) that was published from 1883 to 1923. Its headquarters was in Stuttgart, Germany.
The Archive for Christian Democratic Policy (ACDP) at the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, established in 1976 on the initiative of Heinrich Krone, Bruno Heck and Helmut Kohl, is the central archive of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) of Germany.
The Rosa Luxemburg Foundation named in recognition of Rosa Luxemburg, occasionally referred to as Rosa-Lux, is a transnational alternative policy group and educational institution, centered in Germany and affiliated to the democratic socialist Left Party. The foundation, which was established in Berlin in 1990.
The Network for Reporting on Eastern Europe (n-ost) is an international non-governmental organization and a registered association based in Berlin. Also known by the acronym n-ost, the Network for Reporting on Eastern Europe is led by Executive Director Hanno Gundert and a seven-member board. The organisation has its main office with full-time staff in Berlin's Kreuzberg district.
Hans Böckler was a German politician and trade union leader. He was the most influential re-founder of the unions in post-war Germany and became the first president of the German Trade Union Confederation.
Walter Arendt was a German politician of the Social Democratic Party (SPD).
Helmut Rohde was a German politician who served as federal minister of education and science from 1974 to 1978.
Susanne Miller was a Bulgarian-born left wing activist who for reasons of race and politics spent her early adulthood as a refugee in England. After 1945 she became a German historian.
Gerhard Weisser was a social scientist, university teacher, Social Democrat and expert policy advisor. He was one of the founding fathers of the Godesberg Program which in 1959 relaunched the political centre-left in West Germany.
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