The broad base and successful middle class of development policy characterise the situation in Baden-Württemberg. Traditionally, development cooperation in Baden-Württemberg is characterised by strong and efficient civil society, small and medium-sized organisations, networks and initiatives, which has a say in and commitment to the state's development policy.
In February 2013, the state government adopted new development policy guidelines for Baden-Württemberg, which were developed in a participation process that was unique in Germany at the time. More than 1,500 citizens from all over the state, as well as 120 organisations and associations, actively helped shape the state's development policy through the initiative Welt:Bürger gefragt! and continue to support it today. Even after the adoption of the Development Policy Guidelines, the development policy dialogue Welt:Bürger gefragt! will continue. At annual state conferences on development policy, the state's citizens review the implementation of the guidelines and develop new proposals for action. The Council for Development Cooperation (Rat für Entwicklungszusammenarbeit – REZ), which is made up of experts from the state's major networks active in development policy, also advises the state government on development policy issues.
On the state side, development policy in Baden-Württemberg is a cross-cutting task and in particular an opportunity for the classic core areas of state policy: For example, in education policy via the anchoring of global learning and study in the educational curricula of schools or in the curricula, research priorities and internationalisation strategies of universities; in economic policy in the areas of public procurement, (foreign) economic promotion; in the inclusion of companies in development policy or fair trade; in environmental policy via issues of ecological sustainability and climate protection; in social policy in matters of integration and participation.
In Baden-Württemberg, development policy is a joint task that is primarily supported by the efficient and professional commitment of small and medium-sized actors. The state promotes this commitment, but does not want to replace it. It creates reliable framework conditions to advance development policy and to network and support its actors. Around 3 million euros are available annually for this purpose:
The Stiftung Entwicklungs-Zusammenarbeit Baden-Württemberg (Baden-Württemberg Development Cooperation Foundation), a foundation established by the state of Baden-Württemberg, promotes, advises and supports the initiatives of small and medium-sized actors as a service centre. A department in the Ministry of State set up specifically for development policy is available to citizens, civil society organisations, ministries, municipalities and their umbrella organisations as well as the state parliament and the federal level as a direct and competent contact on the government side.
With the funding lines bwirkt! Partnerschaften/Ausland, bwirkt! Bildung/Inland und bwirkt! Burundi, the state supports the grassroots and the middle class of development policy engagement: with an annual funding volume of around one million euros.
For a decade now, the state has also been working with the federal government to promote the One World promoters programme (Eine-Welt-Promotorinnen und das Promotorenprogramm) in Baden-Württemberg. With more than ten full positions at civil society organisations, the valuable work of the organisations, networks and initiatives in Baden-Württemberg is strengthened.
Every spring, the FAIR HANDELN trade fair offers all actors a forum for exchange, networking and joint initiatives - with a total of around 90,000 visitors. With more than 150 exhibitors, the trade fair has become a beacon of development policy commitment, especially in the field of fair trade, with an impact far beyond the borders of Baden-Württemberg. With the Future Fashion theme, the fair focuses on modern and fair-trade clothing and thus appeals especially to a young audience.
Another focus is on strengthening and promoting the self-organisation of the actors. The establishment of development policy actor networks for migrant and young commitment as well as for the commitment of universities, schools and companies has been advanced in recent years through joint, nationwide annual focal points. The existing civil society, municipal and church networks were also strengthened.
The three common focal points of the actors and the country are: relations with Africa and, as an outstanding focal point, the deepening of the partnership with Burundi. Secondly, young people's commitment and finally, commitment in the cities, municipalities and districts.
With the study Afrika im Blick, the Council of Ministers established an initiative in December 2019 that provides an overview of Baden-Württemberg's relations with our southern neighbouring continent and recommends concrete measures to expand cooperation with the African continent. Its cross-departmental and cross-actor implementation was initially adapted to the Corona pandemic and started in 2020. The focus is on the areas of scientific cooperation and colonial responsibility under the leadership of the Ministry of Science, foreign trade promotion at the Ministry of Economics and Partnership/Development Cooperation at the Ministry of State. In terms of partnerships, there is a focus on deepening the state partnership in development policy, which is favoured by the political thaw in Burundi and the lifting of EU sanctions and was bundled by the Baden-Württemberg Council for Development Cooperation in the Burundi Alliance. Through this dynamic, five priority areas have emerged since 2021: Agroforestry, Reconciliation, Governance, Education and Health. These are each being pursued by a coalition of actors. The Alliance's 2023 delegation trip to Burundi was an important milestone for these five clusters. The return visit and the 40th anniversary of the partnership are scheduled for 2024.
Until the end of 2024, youth engagement is the focus of the pan-European MINDCHANGERS initiative. Young people will be strengthened in their commitment to the United Nations 2030 Agenda, especially in the areas of climate protection and international cohesion, and networked across Europe. The centrepiece is the funding of young projects across Europe, totalling several million euros. At a large youth meeting in Stuttgart in September 2023, the young actors from all over Europe were given a political stage, whereby a process for political co-design was initiated via the "Stuttgart Declaration".
In the field of municipal engagement, a joint roadmap by the federal government, the state and municipalities (Kommunale Entwicklungspolitik Baden-Württemberg) has been in place since summer 2021 in the form of the Baden-Württemberg action plan for municipal development policy. It aims at better networking and more efficient cooperation. For the orientation of municipal actors, it contains an overview of successful examples as well as funding and networking opportunities. For this purpose, there is a working group on development policy of the three municipal state associations. Important concerns here are the design of joint initiatives: for example, on globally sustainable municipalities, on the state partnership with Burundi or on solidarity with Ukraine, on education for sustainable development, on intercultural opening and integration or on sustainable procurement. Since 2023, the State Ministry has been supporting partnership concerns in particular by funding a coordination office at the Baden-Württemberg Association of Cities, which is open to all cities, municipalities and districts and their citizens.