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Rede von Staatssekretär Steinlein bei 4. Global Diplomacy Lab Berlin

09.06.2016 - Rede

„Heiligt der Zweck die Mittel?“ Diese Frage stellten sich die Mitglieder des 4. Global Diplomacy Lab, das vom 9.-12. Juni in Berlin stattfand. Rund 40 junge Teilnehmer aus der ganzen Welt diskutierten über die Rolle von internationalem Recht und moralischen Standards in der Diplomatie. Dabei entstanden nicht nur viele Begegnungen, sondern auch innovative Ideen, wie neue Lösungen für Syrien gefunden werden könnten.

Anlässlich des Eröffnungsempfangs sprach Staatssekretär Stephan Steinlein vor den Teilnehmerinnen und Teilnehmern über die Themen des diesjährigen Labors und die „start-up“-Mentalität in der Außenpolitik.


Members of the Global Diplomacy Lab,
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

For the fourth time the Global Diplomacy Lab is opening its doors. I myself enjoy this event a lot: I have not missed any of the Labs that have taken place in Berlin!

For me, the most important message of the Global Diplomacy Lab is:

There are not only problems, crises, conflicts. There are also solutions!

This conviction is underlying any kind of work in a laboratory: Only if you believe that your experiments can and will yield results, only then you will start researching.

For this lab, I am particularly sure that you will be successful: You come from more than 30 different countries, and you represent various disciplines - ranging from politics to sports, from law to filmmaking. Thereby you represent modern diplomacy, which goes beyond our usual toolbox. You are hence perfectly placed to think outside of this box!

However, looking at this year’s title, you are adding an additional hurdle to your quest for solutions. You are not only asking „what is working“, but also „what is morally allowed“?

Your topic of whether the ends justify the means throws you well into the issue of right and wrong, of black and white. And on your way you will probably find many variations of grey as well.

The dilemmas you will deal with in the following days are the difficult ground on which diplomacy has to operate every day. German foreign policy is determined to live up to very high standards. So your findings are of high relevance. We would be keen in hearing your results!

Ladies and gentlemen,

With your lab you are venturing on the same path, which the FFO has initiated for itself with its „review“. Our goal is to become more innovative, more creative, more open-minded. In a way, we are trying to incorporate a bit of „start-up“ spirit into our work.

In the past years, the Global Diplomacy Lab has developed into a place to explore new means of diplomacy in the 21st century. This is of high value for us. And I am grateful, that our partners share this view: The BMW Foundation Herbert Quandt, Stiftung Mercator, and the Robert Bosch Stiftung. This year we even have a new partner: the Global Leadership Academy of the GIZ has decided to join.

I take this as a sign that we are on the right way. And I take it as a proof that we all are convinced: This laboratory can offer new ways of thinking. Besides, it is a place to discuss, to meet and to connect. This is exactly why I will stop here.

Thank you for being part of this endeavour!

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