Portraits: Making the future

What exactly is a ‘future-maker’? This question was answered in a variety of ways at the second ‘Engagement Fairbindet’, a networking and information fair that took place in May 2012. Around a hundred representatives from international cooperation provided an insight into their work in the grounds of the former German Federal Chancellery. The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Engagement Global gGmbH, KfW and GIZ jointly organised the event.

‘Future-makers’ are first and foremost people who demonstrate a high degree of personal commitment to international cooperation. Several GIZ employees were among those explaining their personal contribution to the world of tomorrow in profiles and short interviews at ‘Engagement Fairbindet’.


Jolanthe Marx, Europe Group/Project Manager, GIZ

My contribution to the world of tomorrow:

As the Project Manager for the Informations- und Beratungsstelle für Praxiserfahrung im Ausland (information and advice point for practical experience abroad – IBS), I contribute to international exchange and dialogue. We promote mobility in vocational training and development and help prepare job seekers for the international job market.

For me, the future begins when every person has access to education and options to pursue qualifications abroad


Lutz Zimmermann, Director General of the Germany Department, GIZ

My contribution: bringing forward-thinking people to Germany to participate in dialogue.

What motivates me: Being able to help solve societal challenges across the globe through international cooperation.

Three things that I definitely want to take along into the world of tomorrow…
... our constructive will to shape the future
... passion for the task at hand
... our numerous allies.


Dr Yahya Wardak, Integrated Expert in Afghanistan, Centre for International Migration and Development (CIM)

For me, the future has begun when every person in the West, East, North and South has equal opportunities for education, health care and personal development.

In the future, we must also develop strategies and projects based on conditions and issues existing on the ground. In doing so, we must use local knowledge and methods, ensuring that we always establish a sound basis and infrastructure first.


Derya Dönmez, 2007–2008 Participant in the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange

Through my involvement in the programme and my role as a ‘mini-ambassador’, I was able to promote intercultural exchange with the USA.

I’ve been lucky enough to grow up in a leading industrial nation, and that is what motivates me to share my knowledge with others who are less fortunate.

The future has begun when every person becomes a little more selfless and celebrates the small things in life.


Silja Dressel, Environment and Climate Division, GIZ

As a future-maker, I want and need to think outside the box, reaching beyond the limits of individual sectors. A good sense of humour is also helpful, because a smile opens doors for constructive collaboration worldwide.

The future has begun when every person better understands that they are part of one society, and can start life with equal opportunities and live in harmony with nature.

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