International Berlin Seminar 2021

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International Berlin Seminar 2021: Applications are open now!

We are happy to announce that from 19.08. – 22.08.2021 JEF Germany will host the 21st edition of the famous International Berlin Seminar (IBS)! The IBS gives you the chance to meet young Europeans for four interesting days of discussion, panels, workshops, seminars and social events. This year’s IBS will focus on democracy and rule of law.

For four days, you and more than 30 inspiring young people aged 18-26 from all over Europe will get the chance to explore Berlin, discuss and try to find answers to questions regarding the state of democracy and rule of law in Europe and beyond. Together we want to develop our own vision of Europe and – more importantly – a way to shape the Europe of tomorrow: federal, inclusive and democratic.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been used to suspend human rights so that authoritarian tendencies have become more visible in some countries. The principle of the rule of law has been part of the legal basis of the EU for almost forty years, but it cannot be taken for granted. A central aspect is the separation of law from political power. More specifically, this ensures that the law always takes precedence in order to establish, among other things, an impartial and independent judiciary and to prevent arbitrariness by the executive. Nevertheless, not all European governments respect this central principle equally. Democracy is under pressure.

During the IBS we will focus on basic terms and concepts of democracy and rule of law, and particularly discuss the following aspects:

  • Post-factual era – are mis- and disinformation a threat to democracy?
  • We are the people! – populism as a style of governance
  • All humans are equal? About human rights and non-discrimination

Besides all, Berlin is not only a nexus of major economic and political institutions and civil society, but also a symbol for a liberal way of life. Next to its vibrant atmosphere, Berlin is still the place to go for individuals, who are considered deviant and different elsewhere. The city has profited from this by becoming a great destination in terms of arts, music and culture, attracting tourists from all over the globe. The IBS is your opportunity to discover this wonderful city!

Are you ready for this year’s IBS? Experts on European politics, new methods, games and lots of food for thought are waiting for you!

The participation fee of 80,00 € includes accommodation, full catering during the seminar and the different workshops and trainings. Travel costs will be reimbursed based on actual costs (tickets required as proof) up to a maximum of 100€ (up to 800km distance), respectively 150€ (more than 801km) distance.

NOTE: Distance is measured „as-the-crow flies“ using the Erasmus+ distance calculator between Berlin and your place of residence!

Find the Application Form here. 

Application deadline: 27 June 2021, 23:59 CET

Contact for more information: Laura Gaißmaier (

NOTE: To ensure the safety and wellbeing of all participants, the Seminar will take place in strict adherence with health and safety regulations. Social distancing measures will be guaranteed in all activities organized by the Seminar. Participants will be provided with detailed guidelines on public health measures to be followed at all times. Depending on the regulations, you might be required to test for Covid 19 prior and during the seminar.  If the pandemic situation won’t allow a Seminar on-site, we will go digital with an accordingly adjusted program. Should this be the case, participants will be informed well in advance. If that will be necessary, confirmed participants are eligible for reimbursement of the participation fee as well as cancellation costs for booked tickets.

Background information on this series of seminars: (German)

BundessekretariatInternational Berlin Seminar 2021