Culture and communication are key elements of a credible, sustainable German foreign policy and go straight to people's hearts and minds. Aimed at people throughout the world, they should
- provide information about Germany, its culture, science and society, and inspire an interest in dialogue and exchange;
- bring alive Germany's identity and its society;
- awaken an understanding of European values and thus create the basic understanding on which foreign policy is built;
- explain German foreign policy coherently and convincingly, make clear Germany's commitment to solving global challenges, and canvass support for German positions.
In this way Germany's attractiveness will be increased through stimulating, credible information and dialogues on culture and education. The information on offer will actively include civil society – particularly the spheres of culture, science and the media – and the interested public.
The resulting networks are the most important resource of cultural and communication policy. They bring the world's best minds in contact with Germany and win them over as partners – today and tomorrow. This benefits German society, business and politics and plays a crucial part in making the country fit for the future.
Given the many different tasks, goals and challenges, many players are involved in cultural and communication policy. These are first and foremost the traditional partner and cultural organizations which shape their programmes in cooperation with the Federal Foreign Office and the German missions abroad, but are largely free to decide the content for themselves. Such organizations include the Goethe-Institut, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations (ifa), Deutsche Welle, the German Archaeological Institute and the Central Agency for Schools Abroad. Increasingly there are also private organizations like foundations or associations which cooperate with the Federal Foreign Office on various specific projects.
The Directorate-General for Culture and Communication at the Federal Foreign Office headquarters comprises 13 divisions. It is headed by Dr. Andreas Görgen. There are also three Commissioners.