The 2022 German-American conference, themed “If Not Now, When?“, covered a wide range of pressing issues. With a focus on fostering collaboration and addressing shared challenges, the conference addressed topics such as Foreign and Security Policy, Economy, Climate and Sustainability, Healthcare and Public Health, Democracy, Civil Society, Technology and Digitization, Science, Sport, and Culture.
Prominent speakers at the conference included Marco Buschmann, Sigmar Gabriel, and Lothar Wieler. Their insights enriched the discussions and provided valuable perspectives on the various topics. Marco Buschmann shared his expertise on democratic processes and civil society, while Sigmar Gabriel contributed his vast experience in foreign and security policy. Lothar Wieler, known for his contributions to public health, provided valuable insights into healthcare and public health challenges.
Through engaging panels and speeches, the conference aimed to identify innovative approaches and opportunities for cooperation between Germany and the United States. By delving into these crucial areas, the conference aimed to foster a stronger partnership and explore avenues for positive change on both sides of the Atlantic.
Due to the COVID-19 challenges we hosted a four-day conference on the topic of The Future of Problem Solving. The 15 panels and speeches focused on looking back at the innovations, efficient and virtual ways, executives, researchers, and politicans solve current challenges. In around one and half years nations were forced to take far-reaching steps to modernize supply chains, technologies, and education, to name a few. This led us to explore how decision-making impacts future generations across the Atlantic and further. During the high-point of the Taliban’s regained power over Afghanistan, Summia Tora, founder of the Dosti Network, discussed the future of US-German relations that arose from the situation in Afghanistan, and the future in general Consequences for the future of international cooperation. In addition, diversity in political structures and the political commitment of young people between members of the Bundestag, Awet Tesfaiesus and Verena Hubertz, and founders of initiatives that increase diversity in public administration.
Despite inherent challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, we hosted a large-scale virtual event series under the topic neustart [overhaul, re-start] in the fall of 2020. Around 2,000 advocates of the transatlantic relationship from Europe, to North America and the Indo-Pacific, joined 14 events, coffee chats, and keynote addresses. With an abundance of impactful speakers, we were especially delighted to be joined by German Federal Minister of Health, Jens Spahn, who gave a keynote on The COVID-19 Pandemic as a Chance for an Updated German Foreign Policy, and German Federal Minister of Labour, Hubertus Heil who also gave a keynote address on Different Ways Out of the Crisis – Concepts in Labor Market Policy Across the Atlantic. Further, we had many interesting panels ranging from topics such as “The COVID-19 Vaccine: A Warm Welcome or the Cold Shoulder?” to “Navigating a “World in Danger” – Lessons for a new generation of Transatlantic security leaders”.
The last pre-covid In-Person GAC was held in the traditional format at various locations around the Harvard University campus with the general theme “breaking barriers”. During the three days, around 800 participants were able to choose to join workshops, panels, keynote addresses, coffee chats in addition to a Harvard University Campus Tour. As one of the many speakers, the former administrator of the EPA, Gina McCarthy, held a keynote on female leadership in the climate crisis, while Vice President of the Economic Council of the Christian Democratic Union (“Wirtschaftsrat der CDU e.V.”), Friedrich Merz, talked about international security. Besides listening to insightful keynotes, the partakers of the conference were also able to attend many heated discussions on topics such as Transatlantic Security, Medicine, and Data Science.