… and we made our little contribution to this undertaking. How? With the simulation game “Red kite or radiator?,” part of the training course “Women for local parliaments”. Target group: Women, of course, and that means women from all walks of life. In the simulation they took on the roles of fictitious councilwoman and staff of local governments and discussed whether a retailer of consumer electronics shall be granted greenfield development or not. Through their roles, they experienced the decision making process on the local level: Faction, committee and council meetings, and in-between informal discussions with all parties involved. They explored their options, and how to save the red kite, who in the game scenario is endangered by the development project. In the end it was decided: The retailer will come, but only under strict conditions.
For us it was great to be part of this project by and for women. And therefore we even didn’t mind the rather long train ride from Berlin up north to the district of Aurich.
Premiere, the first: for the first time the master students of CIFE negotiated the future of the EU online. Using our online platform, they dealt with the reform of EU institutions, enlargement issues, short-term economic reforms and freedom of movement within the EU during three busy weeks. The declaration on these issues was supposed to be finalised during their in-house class in Brussels. This was the plan – but as the Greece debt issue is currently dominating the European agenda in reality, our simulation was influenced by these recent developments as well. And so the agenda of the simulated European Council had to be adjusted to make room for the “causa Greece”.
Premiere, the second: The CIFE students discussed exactly the same list of Greek reform proposals which was evaluated by the ministers of finance of the Eurozone at the same time. Internet updates on the latest developments at the ministers’ meeting brought exactly that tension into the game which was palpable all over Europe on this sunny July weekend. After all, the final declaration of the students was much more generous that the one issued by the heads of state less than 48 hours later – also a sign of how much the students wish for a more friendly outcome of the crisis.
The work with refugees mainly takes place on the local level! Therefore, people involved on the municipality level should be qualified and connected accordingly. To address these issues, we conducted the one-day workshop Refugees – Asylum – Migration in Torgelow on behalf of the Demokratieladen Anklam and the Landeszentrale für politische Bildung Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.
During a panel discussion in the morning, the 120 participants from local government and civil society got a good insight into policies and current developments in the district of Vorpommern-Greifswald. Afterwards they engaged in one of three parallel workshops, addressing legal issues, possible improvements of existing structures, as well as interactive methods for their own work with young people and the general public. The response was overwhelmingly positive and has once again shown that there is a will to look for new ways of working towards a more friendly and humane reception and integration of refugees.