“Infinite opportunities” for Indo-German cooperation
India is well established as a political, cultural, and economic heavyweight and a significant global player. With a population of over one billion, it is an increasingly important partner for Germany. The event series “Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities” will further intensify and expand this partnership.
2011 was a year of special significance for Indo-German relations: the two countries had established diplomatic relations with each other 60 years earlier. Officially inaugurated in May 2011, the event series “Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities” focuses, however, not on the past but rather on the future of Indo-German relations as well as on the challenges that the two countries face.
Focus on future challenges
With this in mind, the theme “StadtRäume – CitySpaces” was chosen as the focus of the event series. It encompasses all the facets of urban development: mobility, migration, water, energy, sustainable development, architecture, engineering, education, cultural infrastructure, social issues and much more.
India is the world’s largest democracy and a multi-ethnic country with 22 official languages. India’s economy is experiencing the strongest growth in the world after China’s. It is projected to be the world’s most populous country by the middle of the century and to have the third largest gross domestic product.
Goal of the event series
With its event series in India, Germany aims to present itself as an innovative, creative partner for India in resolving challenges of the future. This is intended to further the positive image of Germany in India and to increase the visibility of existing Indo-German cooperation. In addition, it provides impetus for finding new forms and fields of cooperation.
Tour through major cities in India
Events will take place in India’s seven largest cities (New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai, Pune and Hyderabad) as well as in cities such as Chandigarh and Coimbatore.
The key feature of the event series will be a mobile space that will travel through India as the “face” of “Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities” and serve as an interactive presentation space for German representatives of the Federal Government, the länder, and municipalities as well as of culture, business, science and research in Germany.
Programme of culture, economics, science, education, and research
The programme of “Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities” consists of around 400 projects, all relating to the overarching theme “StadtRäume – CitySpaces” and exploring and implementing cooperation between the two countries in areas such as art, music, technological problem-solving, and the quality of urban life.
The official opening, at which German and Indian musicians performed a concert of German and Indian classical music together, was attended by the Federal Chancellor and Meira Kumar, the Indian parliament’s spokesperson. It took place within the context of the first German-Indian intergovernmental consultations in New Delhi in May 2011. Among the events kicking off the programme in seven cities were a German-Indian percussion duet in a public park in New Delhi (attended by Minister of State Cornelia Pieper), break-dance in Bangalore, the “Future Dialogue” conference of the Siemens AG and the Max Planck Society, and an German artistic contribution to the Durga Puja festival in Kolkata.
In November 2011, Hamburg and New Delhi grappled with issues of planning and questions of integrating rivers into urban life in the “Y – Yamuna-Elbe” project, which addressed both artistic and environmental topics. A further highlight is the project “Classic Incantations”, a coproduction of The German Film Orchestra Babelsberg and the KM Music Conservatory, Chennai, touring with compositions by the renowned Indian composer A. R. Rahman, whose compositions include the music for the film “Slumdog Millionaire”.
Central to the Year of Germany in India are the multipurpose pavilions, the mobile space, designed especially for the series, which, starting in April 2012, will travel on a “Mobile Space Metro Tour” through various large cities in India as the “face” of “Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities”. In the mobile space, the federal ministries, the Goethe-Institut, and German partner companies will present nine-day programmes in several large cities in the fields of culture, science, and media, but also technological problem-solving for urbanization issues.
More detailed descriptions of all the projects and the current schedule can be found at the Year of Germany’s website: www.germany-and-india.com
The event series is under the patronage of the Federal President. India, for its part, plans to increase efforts to present itself with the “Days of India” in Germany in 2012. In recent years it has been possible to greatly intensify and expand the close ties between Germany and India. In 2000 the two countries adopted the Indo-German Agenda for the 21st Century, a strategic partnership that the countries agreed to expand and intensify during a visit of the Indian Prime Minister to Germany in 2006. Germany is India’s most important trade partner in the EU and many networks and examples of cooperation exist in the areas of culture and education as well.
Ways to join in
“Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities” is being executed by the Federal Foreign Office, the Goethe-Institut, the Asia-Pacific Committee of German Business and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Other interested organizations and individuals are also invited to participate in “Germany and India 2011-2012: Infinite Opportunities”. Please contact Ms Mund (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions about participating in the programme.
Last updated 04.01.2012