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Working together

in partnership

Shaping democratic transition together

Public meetings in local communities, mediation procedures during the planning

of investment projects or elections – democratic participation lends a voice to

people by enabling them to articulate their aspirations and needs. Chiefly on

behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Develop-

ment (BMZ), GIZ has for decades been supporting numerous partners from the

fields of politics and civil society in shaping democratic change and trying out

new forms of participation. In more than 420 projects worth a total of around

EUR 1.6 billion*, it is advising partner governments on good governance and sup-

porting them in establishing rule-of-law structures. One current focus of our work

on behalf of the German Government involves supporting the forces of democracy

in the countries of North Africa and strengthening security structures in fragile

states. GIZ has been working at the interface between development and security

policy for more than ten years. This is a field in which demand for its services is

increasing. In 2012, commissions in the field of security, reconstruction and peace

amounted to EUR 232 million, equivalent to around 14 per cent of the total value

of all GIZ’s commissions for that year and almost twice the figure for 2008.

The support GIZ provides ranges from organising election observation missions

and advising supreme audit institutions through to facilitating the G20 dialogue

with emerging economies in the financial sector. One example of new partnerships

is the global networking of cities using new knowledge platforms.

Living up to our principles: participation inside the company

What applies to entire societies also applies to GIZ as a company. Transparency, accountabil-

ity and participation are also among our core corporate principles. To live up to them, GIZ

has various platforms for internal and external interest groups that are designed to communi-

cate corporate decision-making and other processes, and make sure they are participatory.

The Supervisory Board functions in line with the principle of codetermination and includes

shareholder and workforce representatives. Any conflicting objectives that may arise during

corporate planning processes – for instance between economic efficiency and policy aims –

are discussed openly here. Interest groups that are not represented on the Supervisory Board

have the GIZ Board of Trustees as their forum. Here, GIZ obtains a range of opinions on

new approaches, such as supporting immigration by international experts. The Private Sector

Advisory Board creates a bridge between GIZ and private sector actors. These may be clients,

commissioning parties or partners, depending on the case in hand. Participation by our

workforce is also one of GIZ’s key success factors. As well as the staff representations, GIZ

also has other forums for participation and dialogue that increase the acceptance of our

actions as a company. 


Regardless of whether we are talking about social change in a country or global

sustainable development – if reforms are to generate lasting results they must be

driven and owned by large numbers of people. To enable people around the globe to

participate more actively, GIZ continuously develops new forms of cooperation and

alliances. It does so together with partners, and on behalf of commissioning parties

in developing countries, emerging economies and industrialised nations, and

increasingly with the European Union.

 *Figures taken from:

(as at 13 March 2015)

GIZ Integrated Company Report 2014