The conference on social change and global transformation


Our liberal, democratic society is confronted with myriad challenges. From climate change and the pandemic to war and inflation, the mounting crises are affecting everyone. They force us to rethink our notions of progress, freedom and prosperity. If we want to find new solutions to these crises, we need a way of thinking that takes both economic and social factors into account.

The impact of climate change and the ongoing pandemic shows that we need to adapt our economic system and political processes for the sake of future generations. As the Russian invasion of Ukraine illustrates, it’s not just political actors but also economic ones that have a role to play. If we are to master the big challenges that the world finds itself confronted with today – from pandemic recovery to curbing climate change – we need targeted and transformative political, economic and social efforts that are aligned with the collective goals and values of our society.

How can we work together to responsibly shape the transformation our world is going through? What kinds of economic policy interventions are needed in these times? Why is the transition to a zero-carbon economy and society an opportunity to make Europe stronger and more independent over the long term? And what standards must we hold international economic and commercial relations to? How can our economy meet social needs while responsibly paving the way for a sustainable future? How can we transform our economic system in line with our shared objectives?


What vision can we have of the future in a time of rapid change and crumbling political certainties?

On 22 September, we’ll be coming together to help set the course of future change. At the conference Bound to change: where are we heading?, established experts and progressive new voices from business, politics and civil society will be discussing the transformations that will be needed moving forward. The event is taking place in Deutsche Bank’s Quartier Zukunft – and you’re invited to join us.


  • Welcoming Address by Dr Anna Herrhausen

  • Interview with Deutsche Bank CEO Christian Sewing

  • A turning Point in History – and conflicting goals for the future? The new World (Dis)order

  • Russia’s War against Ukraine – Consequences for Germany and Europe

  • Is Change even Possible? Systemic Reforms vs Power Shifts

  • Mut-Muskeltraining mit den Radikalen Töchtern

  • A Courage-Building Workout with Die Radikalen Töchter

  • How dare You!? When Generations clash: Governing a Divided Society

  • We’re changing! How about you?

  • Closing Remarks by Dr. Paul Achleitner


Show content of NAVID KERMANI

Navid Kermany Copyright Dietrich Kuehne

Photo: Dietrich Kuehne

NAVID KERMANI is a freelance writer and habilitated orientalist. He is a member of the German Academy for Language and Poetry and of the 1st FC Cologne. From 2000 to 2003 he was a Long Term Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, and from 2009 to 2012 a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities (KWI) Essen. Kermani has taught as a visiting professor at the University of Frankfurt and at Dartmouth College in the United States. Together with Guy Helminger, he has hosted the Literary Salon in Cologne's Stadtgarten since 2006. Navid Kermani has received the Kleist Prize and the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade for his novels, essays, reportages and monographs. His non-fiction books have been translated into numerous languages.

Show content of ZARAH BRUHN

Zarah Bruhn

ZARAH BRUHN is the Co-Founder and CEO of socialbee, a social enterprise that has been helping companies hire and qualify refugees since 2016. Zarah Bruhn has received numerous awards for her entrepreneurial commitment, including as a Capital Top 40 under 40 and an Ashoka Fellow. Since 2022, she has been the Commissioner for Social Innovation at the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, where she plays a key role in driving legislation and funding for social innovation.



ELIZABETH SIDIROPOULOS is the chief executive of the South African Institute of International Affairs, which she has led since 2005. She is a regular commentator in South African and foreign media, is co-chair of the Think 20 Africa Standing Group and has served two years on the Second High-Level Advisory Board of the UN Economic and Social Affairs department. Most recently, she has co-edited a volume on Values, Interests and Power: South African Foreign Policy in Uncertain Times (2020), that looks at the country’s foreign policy in the 2020s.

Show content of ANNA HERRHAUSEN

ANNA HERRHAUSEN has been Chief Executive Director of the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft since 2016. After holding positions at McKinsey & Company and in the corporate responsibility department of the Allianz Group, she moved to the Communications & Social Responsibility department of Deutsche Bank as Director in 2014. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Philosophy, Political Science and Economics from Oxford University, a Master's degree in International Affairs from Columbia University and a PhD in International Relations from the Free University of Berlin. Anna Herrhausen is a member of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) and a trustee of the Hertie School. In August 2020, she was appointed Head of the Arts & Culture Department of Deutsche Bank as a further function.

Show content of PAUL ACHLEITNER

PAUL ACHLEITNER was Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Deutsche Bank from 2012 to 2022. He studied at Harvard Business School and at the University of St. Gallen, where he also earned his doctorate. After four years at the management consultancy Bain & Co, Achleitner joined the investment bank Goldman Sachs in 1988. Achleitner was then CFO of Allianz SE from 2000 and has been an honorary professor at the Otto Beisheim School of Management since 2001. He is also on the Supervisory Board of Bayer AG and the Shareholders' Committee of Henkel AG. Achleitner is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Alfred Herrhausen Society, President of the Foundation Board of the University of St. Gallen, and Co-Chairman of the Hong Kong/Europe Business Council.


ANNABELLE VON REUTERN is an architect and proven expert on the circular economy in the construction industry as Head of Business Development at Concular. The start-up Concular is the market leader in the creation of material passports for buildings and enables the complete process of reusing building materials to be carried out with its software. After studying at RWTH Aachen and TU Berlin, she worked for several years in architectural offices in Cologne and is a member of Architects for Future.

Show content of KIRA VINKE

KIRA VINKE is the director of the newly founded Centre for Climate and Foreign Policy at the German Council on Foreign Relations. She is also Co-Chair of the German Government's Advisory Council on Civilian Crisis Prevention and Peacebuilding and works as a scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). There she headed the East Africa Peru India Climate Capacities (EPICC) project before joining DGAP. Dr. Vinke is also involved in the Board of Trustees of World Vision Deutschland e.V., as a member of the Association of the German Section of Action against Hunger, and in the Development Service and Humanitarian Aid Committee of Bread for the World.


Philippa Sigl-Gloeckner

PHILIPPA SIGL-GLÖCKNER is the founder of the think tank Dezernat Zukunft, which focuses on monetary, financial and economic policy. Her previous positions include personal assistant and office manager to a state secretary in the Federal Ministry of Finance, advisor to the Liberian finance minister and at the World Bank. Philippa studied philosophy, politics, economics and computer science at Oxford University and Imperial College, London. She is a member of the Economic Policy Advisory Board of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), and has been selected for the Atlantic Bridge Young Leaders Programme, the Capital 40 under 40 2020 & 2021, and the Forbes 30 under 30 list 2019.

Show content of PAULINA FRÖHLICH

Paulina Copyright CapitalHeadshots Berlin

Photo: Capital Headshots Berlin

PAULINA FRÖHLICH leads the programme "Resilient Democracy" at the think tank Das Progressive Zentrum. There, she leads the European democracy conference Innocracy and is co-author of studies and discussion papers such as “Die Übergangenen - Strukturschwach und Erfahrungsstark” or “Democratising the Economy in an Era of Disordered Order”. Paulina co-founded the initiative Kleiner Fünf, which supports people to take action against right-wing populism through "radical civility". In 2020, Capital magazine listed Paulina as TOP40 under 40 in the category "Society and Science". She comments on political events for Deutschlandfunk Kultur and RBB Kultur, among others, and will be lecturing at the University of the Arts in the coming semester.

Show content of BIAO XIANG


BIAO XIANG is Director of Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Germany, and Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Oxford before that. Xiang’s research addresses various types of migration – internal and international, unskilled and highly skilled, emigration and return migration, and the places and people left behind – in China, India and other parts of Asia. Xiang received multiple awards for his research and publications. His book Transcending Boundaries was reprinted as a contemporary classic, and Self as Method, co-authored with Wu Qi, was ranked the Most Impactful Book 2020. His work has been translated into multiple languages.

Show content of CHRISTIAN SEWING

CHRISTIAN SEWING has been a member of the Management Board since January 2015 and Chairman of the Management Board of Deutsche Bank since April 2018. On May 2021, he additionally assumed responsibility for Human Resources Development. Sewing joined Deutsche Bank in 1989. In his career, he held a number of management positions in Risk - in addition to Frankfurt, also in locations such as Singapore, Toronto, Tokyo and London. After moving to Deutsche Genossenschafts-Hypothekenbank, where he was a member of the Board of Managing Directors from 2005, he returned to Deutsche Bank in 2007. He was the bank's Chief Credit Officer from 2010 to 2012 and Deputy Chief Risk Officer from 2012 to 2013. From June 2013 to December 2014, he headed Group Audit before being appointed to the Management Board in January 2015, where he was responsible for Legal, Incident Management Group and Group Audit until June 2015. He then assumed responsibility for the Private and Corporate Clients Bank Division (including Postbank) until April 2018.


MANOUCHEHR SHAMSRIZI The founder of the social start-up RetroBrain R&D is "among the most publicly prominent voices of Germany's younger generation" (Washington Post) and is "involved wherever the improvement of political conditions still has a lot of room for improvement" (re:publica). He conducts research at Humboldt University, whose gamelab.berlin he co-founded, and is currently the "gaming specialist" at the German Foreign Office. Shamsrizi was a Global Justice Fellow at Yale University and an Ariane de Rothschild Fellow at the University of Cambridge, and has been awarded CAPITAL's "40 under 40" and the World Economic Forum's Global Shaper, among others.

Show content of SAMIHA SHAFY

SAMIHA SHAFY is an editor in the political department of DIE ZEIT and reports from Berlin on German foreign policy and international issues. Her main focus is on the USA, geopolitics and the climate crisis. She previously worked at SPIEGEL for 13 years, first as science editor, then in the foreign affairs department and most recently as a correspondent in New York. Together with Klaus Brinkbäumer, Shafy published the bestseller "Das kluge, lustige, gesunde, ungebremste, glückliche, sehr lange Leben" (S.Fischer) in 2019.

Show content of NORBERT RÖTTGEN

NORBERT RÖTTGEN is a current member of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the German Bundestag.  He served as Chairman of the Committee from 2014 until 2021, and was moreover Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety from 2009 to 2012. Dr Röttgen is member of the Christian Democratic Party (CDU), for which has fulfilled various key functions. He is also the Co-Chair of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) and Board Member of various institutions, such as the Atlantik-Brücke, Asia House, Club of Three, the Hertie School of Governance Berlin and the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP).


Wolf Reuter.jpg

WOLF HEINRICH REUTER has been Director-General for Economic and Fiscal Policy at the Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF) since April 2022. Until his move to the BMF, he was Secretary General at the German Council of Economic Experts. Previously, he worked at the Austrian National Bank, the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, among others. He has also spent shorter periods at the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank and the European Commission. His research interests include European and German fiscal policy, climate policy and international trade.

Show content of DR. JANKA OERTEL

Janka Oertel

JANKA OERTEL is the Director of the Asia Programme at the European Council on Foreign Relations. She previously worked as a Senior Fellow in the Asia Program at the German Marshall Fund of the United States’ Berlin office, where she focused on transatlantic China policy including on emerging technologies, Chinese foreign policy and security in East Asia; and served as a program director at Körber Foundation’s Berlin office. She has published widely on topics related to EU-China relations, US-China relations, security in the Asia-Pacific region, Chinese foreign policy, 5G and emerging technologies as well as climate cooperation.


URSULA WEIDENFELD is a journalist, columnist and presenter based in Berlin and Potsdam. She studied economic history, German language and literature and economics in Bonn and Munich and earned her doctorate in Bonn. She worked at WirtschaftsWoche, for the Tagesspiegel, at the Financial Times Deutschland and as editor-in-chief of the business magazine Impulse. She is a columnist for the Tagesspiegel, the Stuttgarter Zeitung and the news portal t-online.de. She works as a commentator and reviewer for WDR and Deutschlandfunk Kultur. She hosts the podcast "Tonspur Wissen" for the Leibniz Association and the Rheinische Post. Most recently she published the bestseller "Die Kanzlerin, Portrait einer Epoche" (2021).

Show content of MARILENA BERENDS

MARILENA BERENDS actually always wanted to be an actress, but then studied economics, philosophy and politics and came to journalism via detours. Since 2017, she has been producing and hosting the Sinneswandel podcast, which is dedicated to questions about livable futures and social change. As a freelance journalist and moderator - but above all, as a proponent - she is looking for potentials and room for manoeuvre to solve the challenges of our time.

Show content of MIGUEL GÓNGORA

MIGUEL GÓNGORA is a student, activist as well as a former state student representative of Berlin from Bogotá, Columbia. Miguel sees himself as an advocate for the young and upcoming generations. As a staff member of the "Participatory Management Laboratory" of the Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Disposal, he is committed to the transformation of the administration. In addition, he is Head of Fundraising at the Generations Foundation. In his youth, he was chairman of the Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf Children's and Youth Parliament for many years. Today he is involved in the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe as a Future Mentor in the Eurocities 2022 programme.

Show content of RADIKALE TÖCHTER

RADIKALE TÖCHTER: Racism, climate crisis and disenchantment with politics: the world needs new radical ideas and measures if it wants to solve its challenges and problems. Above all, it needs more courage and a new enthusiasm for democratic values and political engagement. With our work, we empower people to use the tools of action art to formulate their concerns and goals and to develop ways to achieve them. The aim of the Courage Muscle workshops is to promote humanity, attitude and passion and to help participants discover their capacity for action. For a critical mass that burns passionately again: for democracy. Equality, brotherhood and sisterhood.

Show content of NORA BOSSONG

NORA BOSSONG studied in Berlin, Leipzig and Rome. She lives as a freelance writer in Berlin, publishes novels, essays and poems and regularly speaks out on current socio-political issues. In 2019, her novel Schutzzone was longlisted for the German Book Prize. Bossong has received numerous awards, most recently the Thomas Mann Prize (2020) and the Joseph Breitbach Prize (2020).