19th Karlsruhe Dialogues – Speakers
Prof. Dr. Martin Albrow
1. What contribution to the quality of life and vibrancy of a city can civil society make through active citizen participation?
Civil society is the active search for shared goals and values, bringing together the diversity of interests and cultures of a city’s population who might otherwise pursue lives in ignorance of each other.
2. In how far do cities have a responsibility for the coexistence of cultures and the emergence of a collective identity?
Cities attract diversity, and in projecting a unique image to the wider world they signal the ever-present possibility of creating a new unity. Promoting local harmony and community co-operation helps to boost the integrity of a city’s image worldwide.
3. “If Mayors Ruled the World” (Benjamin R. Barber) …
How could they solve problems due to national blockades of international politics putting them into perspective and promoting new forms of intercultural understanding?
City leaders need a cosmopolitan outlook to project their city’s identity across national boundaries and with other cities worldwide, but also to convince their own communities that they listen to and understand the diversity of their cultures. In this way they can set an example to national politicians.