Society and Religion

Society and Religion

In terms of the state, the liberal order needs a unifying ethos, a kind of ‘public spirit’, among those who live in this state. The question is then: Where does this ethos come from, which can neither be enforced by the state nor imposed by sovereignty? One could say: first of all, from the lived culture. But what the factors and elements underpinning this culture? There we are indeed with sources like Christianity, Enlightenment and Humanism.

Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde, Philosopher of law, political and administrative scientist

Social Changes and Cohesion

German society is becoming more diverse. With German unity, a country divided for 40 years has been and continues to be brought together since 1989. European integration, advancing digitalisation and the energy revolution are permanently changing working and everyday life in Germany. Migrants are becoming Germans, and religious diversity as well as the number of life and family models are rising. At the same time, the urban-rural and young-old ratio is changing.

Diversity also increases the need for stabilising coexistence through binding rules, however. That is often more successful than expected, but sometimes fails due to different demands and interests. Cracks are emerging in some areas of the social fabric. To ensure that these cracks do not deepen, social changes must be shaped politically. To achieve this, politics needs interdisciplinary analysis and consultation. The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung responds to this need with socio-political analyses, discussions and advice. Its socio-political work focuses on children, youth and family, demographic change, migration, integration and equal rights.


Religious Diversity and Secularisation

But the topics of religious influence, religious diversity and religious policy are evidently subject to processes of change, too. The Christian churches are continuously losing members both in Germany and Europe. The number of non-denominational people continues to rise; a general trend towards secularisation is becoming clear to many. Yet, religion is not disappearing from the state and society, rather its role is changing. That is more visible in the global context than the European one. 84 per cent of the global population feel they belong to a religious community and, by their own account, believe in God or a higher power – and the trend is rising.

The significance of religious convictions for social cohesion and the search for orientation still seems to be relevant, even if the ambivalent character of religion is increasingly perceived – as a meaningful motivation on the one hand, and as a source of conflict, on the other. The relevance of religion in today’s societies as well as in national and international politics, is reflected in various thematic fields and policy areas. This includes the discussion on religious education, the organisation of Jewish and Muslim life in Germany and the safeguarding of religious liberties worldwide. The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung’s religious policy work focuses on a commitment to religious freedom in particular.

Discussion Forums and Publication Projects

Below you will find discussion forums and multi-party publication projects on current religious and socio-political issues. The main emphasis should be placed on the two discussion forums dealing with questions of religious policy.

Expert Initiative Religious Policy

Experteninitiative Religionspolitik Logo


The Expert Initiative Religious Policy (EIR) is an academic-political forum for discussion on religious policy issues. The EIR blog provides a knowledge forum and debate platform on current events and developments in constitutional law, German politics and the emerging common European constitutional space. Based on various expert opinions, the blog makes proposals on how to further develop the religious legal system within the meaning of freedom of religion and ideology.


Learn more about the Expert Initiative Religious Policy

Discussion Forum “”

kreuz-und-quer-Diskussionsforum Logo


The blog “” sees itself as a discussion forum for political action out of Christian duty. The blog articles are deliberately diverse: They ask, for instance, how the church and politics intend to deal with the most important problems of our time. While also asking us what conclusions we draw from this.


Learn more about the blog “”

Contributions to the Debate on Assisted Suicide as an Act of Business

Blick in einen Tunnel


After the German Constitutional Court declared § 217 of the German Penal Code (StGB), which criminalised the commercial promotion of suicide, to be null and void in February 2020, politics and society now face the question on how to deal with wishes to die and assisted suicide. Read our contributions to the debate on the topic of commercial assisted suicide.


Learn more about the contributions to the debate on assisted suicide


Event Series and Seminars

The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung offers different event formats of socio-political relevance, aimed at various targets groups. While the Youth Policy Days and the denkt@g competition represent a specific offer for youth and young adults, the Women’s Council aims to explicitly promote women with targeted nationwide formats, so as to increase their presence and visibility in politics, business and society.

DenkTag and denkt@g Competition

Headerbild DenkTag-Veranstaltungsreihe Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e. V.


For many years, the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung has used the official day of remembrance for victims of National Socialism as an occasion for nationwide projects and events. As part of this so-called “DenkTag event series”, talks with contemporary witnesses, lecture events, readings and exhibitions are held on all matters relating to 27 January in numerous federal states.

Every two years, the nationwide internet youth competition “denkt@tag” also takes place under the patronage of the former President of the Germany Bundestag Dr Norbert Lammert.


Find out more about the DenkTag

Learn more about the the denkt@g competition

JugendpolitikTage (Youth Politics Days)

Jugendpolitiktag KAS


Since 2007, the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung has been organising JugendpolitikTage several times a year, where young adults can obtain information about current social and political issues, discuss them and exchange ideas. The various workshops are specially adapted to the needs of young people. In the form of films, comics, newspaper articles, plays, dance choreographies, drawings and self-written narratives, the participants can explore various topics.


Learn more about the JugendpolitikTage

Women’s Council

Michaela Peisger, Head of Finance Germany der KPMG AG, Berlin (im Bild rechts). KAS / Stefan Stahlberg


Women continue to be under-represented in politics, business and society. For this reason, with the Women’s Council, the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung provides a nationwide seminar programme just for women. With our multifaceted events, we would like to embolden women to position themselves well and take responsibility.


Learn more about the Women’s Council


Podcasts and Video Series

Some of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung’s podcasts and video series are devoted to relevant aspects of socio-political issues such as social diversity, Jewish life in Germany, or questions on causes of flight and how to combat them.

KAS Fragt Nach

KAS fragt nach Pixabay


“KAS fragt nach” is primarily dedicated to questions about the causes of flight and how to combat them. Here, the focus is not only on how Western industrialised states and societies can help fight the causes of flight over the short-term, but above all on the measures that may contribute towards sustainable development and improvement of the situation on the ground and thus to a long-term reduction of the causes of flight. In each episode, we talk with a range of guests not only about the situation in different states, but also about personal and professional experiences of our interviewees.


Learn about the “KAS fragt nach” podcast

Future Women

Visual Zukunftsfrauen Podcast


In the podcast “Future Women", women have something to say about their social commitment and associated experience. In the discussion, they report on their personal journey, their own trajectory and the challenges and difficulties facing them on the path towards greater co-determination and the realisation of their own visions and specific goals.


Learn more about the podcast “Future Women”

Aftertaste – Jewish Everyday Life in Germany

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Aftertaste – Jewish Everyday Life in Germany, Trailer

(only in German)

YouTube, Onlinekas

What does everyday life for Jews in Germany really look like today? On the occasion of the anniversary “1700 years of Jewish life in Germany”, we have issued the video series “Aftertaste – Jewish everyday life in Germany”. Britta Herres, who is on her voluntary social year, embarks on a journey through the republic to talk to different people of Jewish origin.


See all episodes of our video series

Britta’s Hanukkah Week

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Britta’s Hanukkah Week

(only in German)

YouTube, Onlinekas

We sent Britta Herres, who is on a voluntary social year with us, on a little journey. Together with Leni, a young woman who has decided to become a rabbi, she explores Berlin. What motivated Leni to take up rabbinical studies? What is it like to celebrate holidays in Berlin? And where does the origin of the Hanukkah festival actually lie? More on this can be found in our video series “Britta’s Hanukkah Week”.


See all episodes of our video series on YouTube.

Single title
yellow too Pasiek Horntrich GbR/ kas
August 4, 2021
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picture alliance / ASSOCIATED PRESS | Mikhail Metzel
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Media library

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