International Berlin Seminar 2021

International Berlin Seminar 2021


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

<< All applicants have been notified by us via e-mail. Please check your mailbox! >>

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!

Applications are closed.

Contact for more information:

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)

Information on Covid

Unfortunately the current pandemic still forces us to establish some measures to ensure your safety. There will be a comprehensive hygiene concept that implements the legal requirements and takes additional precautions. We will make it available here in time for you to prepare.

Travelling during the pandemic

IMPORTANT: A Test is required for entry to Germany, you need to register it on the digital entry form.

Most important for you are the travel restrictions. It is your responsibility to comply with all restrictions, however we try to assist you by explaining the restrictions of entry to Germany.

Germany declares risk areas in three different categories, each with different restrictions:

1. Areas of variants of concern.

These are areas where new variants of the corona-virus are spreading. If you are from one of these areas participation is strictly prohibited!

2. High incidence areas

These are all areas where the virus is spreading fast. If you enter from such a region you are obliged to quarantine for at least 10 days, unless you can show proof of recovery or a vaccination certificate.

3. Basic risk areas

These are other areas where the risk of infection still is relatively high. If you enter from such a region you are obliged to quarantine too, unless you can show a negative test result, proof of recovery or a vaccination certificate.

In each case you are required to register your entry digital on this platform:

Further information is provided by the links below and the leaflet you can find in the download section at the bottom of the page.

If you are entering Germany from an area that is not declared as one of the three categories above, you can enter as usual.

Also a general obligation to test no matter from where or how you are coming to germany was introduced.

current official risk areas Travel information by the Federal Ministry of Health

Things to keep in mind

  • Drinks (like our famous German beer) are not included in the evening programs, so please make sure to pay for your drinks before leaving the bar!
  • Respect the schedule! We have invested a lot of effort in this seminar and it will only run smoothly if we stick to the schedule.
  • Travel Reimbursement: TRavel costs will be reimbursed after the seminar. Please be aware that you need to keep your original tickets. You will have to send them back to us together with a reimbursement form which you will receive separately.
  • As us. If you have any questions or concerns before, during or after the seminar, please let us know. We are here to help you!


We will stay at the youth hostel “Alte Feuerwache”. The address is: Axel-Springer-Str. 40/41 10969 Berlin (yes, Google Maps knows the hostel).

At the hostel we will stay in dorm rooms with 4 beds, each room with a shower/toilet.
Please note: Bed linen is included, but towels are not, so bring your own!

During the seminar meals are included.

How to get there

From Schönefeld Airport (SXF): Take the train S45 in direction “Südkreuz” and get off at “Tempelhof”, then take the metro line U6 in direction “Alt-Tegel” and get off at “Kochstraße Checkpoint Charlie”. From here it’s a 5 to 10 minute walk to the hostel.

From Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER): Take the train S45 in direction “Südkreuz” and get off at “Tempelhof”, then take the metro line U6 in direction “Alt-Tegel” and get off at “Kochstraße Checkpoint Charlie”. From here it’s a 5 to 10 minute walk to the hostel.

From “Hauptbahnhof” (central railway station): Take either train S3, S5 or S7 in direction “Ahrensfelde” and get off at “Friedrichstraße”, then take the metro line U6 in direction “Alt-Mariendorf” and get off at Kochstraße Checkpoint Charlie”. From here it’s a 5 to 10 minute walk to the hostel.


Thursday, August 19th 2021

15:00 – 17:00 Check-In (please contact us if you arrive later!)

17:00 Get to know each other

19:00 Dinner

20:00 Get to know each other

Friday, August 20th 2021

8:00 Breakfast

8:30 Joint walk to the representation of the European Commission in Germany

9:00 Expert input

12:30 Lunch

14:00 Scavenger hunt through Berlin

19:00 Dinner

Saturday, August 21st 2021

8:00 Breakfast

9:00 Workshops

12:30 Lunch

14:00 Workshops

19:00 Dinner

20:00 Evening Program

Sunday, August 22nd 2021

8:00 Breakfast

9:00 Presentation and discussion of the workshop results

11:30 Feedback

12:30 End of the IBS 2021


The exact programm and times may still be subject to change.

Funding notice

Das Internationale Berlin Seminar wird dankenswerterweise gefördert aus Mitteln des Kinder- und Jugendplans des Bundes durch das Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend.

Unterstützt durch die Toepfer Stiftung.

Unterstützt durch die Europa-Union Deutschland.

BundessekretariatInternational Berlin Seminar 2021