German democracy promotion: The German political foundations in the MENA region
Article about the German political foundations in the MENA region by Katharina Konarek, the director of the Haifa Center for German and European studies (HCGEs) at the University of Haifa, featured in the ORIENT II 2022
The seven German political foundations are an essential part of German foreign policy. Due to their secured funding through German tax money paired with access to key political decision-makers, they are a unique institutional construction acting as a hybrid between an independent NGO and a state-funded think tank. For decades they have maintained offices and projects in the whole MENA region, shaping democratic developments in project countries and therefore contributing to German foreign policy on a soft-power level. This contribution reflects on their current activities in the MENA region, on their challenges and also on the possible impact of the change in German government on the foundations’ work.
Katharina Konarek the director of the Haifa Center for German and European studies (HCGEs) at the University of Haifa. she is a political scientist with a specialisation on German and European foreign policy. Her regional focus is on Israel and Palestine. In her PhD, conducted at the Bundeswehr University of Munich, she examines the role of the German political foundations in Israel and Palestine. Her book The German political foundations’ work between Jerusalem, Ramallah and Tel Aviv. A Kaleidoscope of Different Perspectives was published in 2018 by springer vs.
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