Germany’s Political Turning Point: Just Change or Also Progress?

Analysing progress and the post-Merkel political landscape

Germany has voted for change. But will the result from the 2021 German Election deliver progress? Join newly elected Green Member of Parliament Ricarda Lang, Jeremy Cliffe, and Tobias Dürr as they dissect the election results, explore the different coalition options, and what it all means for progressives in Germany, Europe and North America.

Under the shadow of the Covid-19 pandemic, the beginning of the 2020s has also been politically marked by generation-defining elections. Less than one year after Joe Biden’s historic victory in the United States and half a year before France heads to the polls, Germany voted for change: Merkel’s center-right party lost points, while the Social Democrats and the Greens made meaningful gains.

As Merkel departs from office and the next chapter of politics in Germany begins, there is plenty of unfinished business at home and in Europe: her record on the climate crisis is mixed at best, the last economic reform dates back to her predecessor, Gerhard Schröder, and calls to reform Europe have largely been ignored.

As the dust settles, it is clear that Germany has voted for change. But will the electorate’s mandate for a fresh start translate into progress? This depends on if and how the Social Democrats, the Greens, and the Liberals form a governing coalition. For Germany to experience a new political era of progress, the next government will need answers to pressing issues ranging from the climate crisis to economic reform.


Germany’s Political Turning Point: Just Change or Also Progress?

Time: Monday, October 04, 2021 | 3:00 p.m (Berlin) | 09.00 a.m. (D.C.) | Zoom

Speaking at the event:

  • Ricarda Lang, Vice-Chair of the Greens (Germany) and newly elected Member of Parliament
  • Tobias Dürr, founding member of Das Progressive Zentrum
  • Jeremy Cliffe (Moderator), International Editor at the New Statesman 


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Join us as our commentators…

  • Analyse the state of progressive politics in Germany post-Merkel
  • Break down the different coalition options and what international progressives should expect
  • Identify points of progress during the campaigning leading up to the election
  • Explain successful strategies being used by progressive parties during this era of change
  • Discuss what this all means for progressives in Europe, North America, and beyond

The analysis will be followed by a Q&A session.

This event is associated with the Progressive Governance series, a yearly summit that brings together progressive leaders and movements from across Europe and North America. At the 2021 edition, our central question was: how can we make the 2020s a decade of progress?


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We look forward to welcoming you to this special event as we grapple with the ramifications of the 2021 German Election for progressives in Germany, Europe, and the decade to come. This event will be recorded live and be made available as a podcast (in cooperation with the Foundation for European Progressive Studies).

Florian Ranft

Diego Rivas

published on

21 September 2021