Hard-working. Efficient. Reliable.
Germany’s political system is seen as a stable democracy that follows a constitutional rule of law. The way different interest groups interact works well and is institutionally anchored. Germany is viewed as a leading economic power in the European Union, and “Made in Germany” still represents outstanding quality.
The interviewees consider accessibility of schools and universities, as well as an analytical approach to specialist issues to be great strengths of the German education systems. Furthermore, research institutions are attractive because of their interdisciplinary character and practical orientation. The cultural programmes in Germany are also highly valued and accessible to a wide range of people. The comprehensive health insurance cover and high quality of care are evidence of a strong healthcare system.
Other countries also feel that respect is due to Germany for coming to terms with the National Socialist period. Politicians and society had learned lessons from the past. The reunification of Germany and the acceptance of refugees in 2015/16 was perceived as another huge achievement.
“At this time [2015/2016] the German government acted humanely and assumed global responsibility.”
In the historical shadow of National Socialism
From an external perspective, German history is strongly linked with the history of National Socialism: “When Germany is thinking about its future, the neighbours are thinking about its past.”