The Update


What we do, what we plan, what we think



Call for Program Chairs

Are you working on systemic change? Then you would be a great candidate to become a Program Chair – currently we are looking for academics and practitioners for the year 2024–2025, addressing questions of how to create value for social well-being under the guiding question of  Confronting Capitalism.

What is your dream team? Once you are chosen as a Program Chair, you can assemble a team of up to four fellows that you want to work with on your project – from academia, journalism, and media, from business, politics, law, and the arts.

Are you curious? Here are all the details about this call: Confronting Capitalism. Creating Value for Social Well-being.


Call for Fellows

Do we live in an age of polycrisis? A lot of people certainly think so and the term has been used more and more often in academia and by the media to describe the “interlocking and simultaneous crises of an environmental, geopolitical and economic nature,” as the Financial Times framed it.

What are the limits of this concept? Polycrisis and power are inherently connected – the one term focuses more on the consequences, the other more on the reasons for present predicaments. An intersectional perspective, and more specifically black feminism, Minna Salami, the Program Chair for this fellowship argues, offers the potential to configure a novel solution space.

What will our fellows work on? The fellows of the year 2023–2024 will include perspectives from the Global South in the discussion, challenging Europatriarchal systems of domination, offering concrete and imaginative visions for a better future – ”polycritical,” as Minna calls it, and “epistemically polyamorous.”

Check out the details for this call: Here.


Prototyping for the Digital Age

What is the Data Commons Working Group? Under the guidance and leadership of Francesca Bria, a diverse group of experts in the fields of data, governance, law, and civic innovation came together in The Hall, our lovely meeting room at THE NEW INSTITUTE, to discuss models for data sharing for the public good. Present were also representatives of the City of Hamburg, among them Jan Pörksen, head of the Senate Chancellery.

What is The New Hanse? In collaboration with the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, we look for pilot projects addressing real-world challenges, starting from mobility and its net-zero goals to developing blueprints for other European cities for the governance of data and the digital transition for the public interest.

What is the Challenge? We want to find out how cities can share and govern data to become more democratic and sustainable – and we are looking for innovative and data-driven solutions! So hurry, the deadline is fast approaching, on March 20!

More information: Here!


Digital Empowerment

What is GIDE? GIDE stands for Global Initiative for Digital Empowerment. It is an international gathering of eminent data scientists, politicians, and practitioners building a new pro-people data environment, supported by THE NEW INSTITUTE. At the annual conference of the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) in Brussels we presented the GIDE report.

Why is this relevant? There is a misalignment of interests between the users of digital tools and the suppliers of digital services. This creates monopolies on a large scale, threatening market economies, exposing and exploiting people, and confronting them with manipulative design and digital fraud.

What does GIDE propose? Well-tailored adaptive regulation is needed – but by no means sufficient. Consumers – supported by non-commercial data intermediaries – must be able to control the access to their data and to determine its terms. This creates the basis for real digital citizenship, empowering digital users to shape their digital networks in accordance with their own individual objectives.

Source of inspiration: From the fellows

Racial oppression prevents full democracy, but it has also made liberal democracies possible. This is far from being a paradox, as abolitionist theorist Joel Olson explains in his book The Abolition of White Democracy. He emphasizes that the fundamental ideals of liberalism, such as individual autonomy and equal opportunity, were developed against a backdrop of Black subordination. In the US, during the era of slavery and segregation, American citizenship occurs as a form of racial privilege. Although it is commonly recognized that racism has no place in a democratic society, racial problems still pervade almost every aspect of our lives, including where we live, the quality of healthcare we receive, and our exposure to violence. 

Rahel Süß is a fellow in the program The Future of Democracy. She is working on concepts for digital democracy.


A Festival for the Future

We believe in social change. And support the efforts of the Bundeskanzler Helmut Schmidt Stiftung in awarding outstanding individuals. Last year’s recipient of the foundation’s annual Future Prize was the climate activist Vanessa Nakate.

What is new? The Future Prize is starting a future festival. On May 3 and 4, 2023, it will bring together young social changemakers on the Leuphana campus in Lüneburg to explore responsible change and bring new ideas to the world.

And the prize? Will be awarded on May 4, stay tuned for news about the recipient! 

New faces

Welcome Chrysostomos Mantzavinos and Kit Fine! We are really happy to have you with us for the next few months, working on ideas and concepts for a Social-Economic Transformation

Hamburg is our home.
The world is our habitat.
The future is our concern.


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