Bundespräsident Theodor Heuss ehrt 1958 Gewinner des "6. Großen Weihnachtspreisausschreibens" - Vorläufer des heutigen Schülerwettbewerbs zur politischen Bildung.

Foundation and development 1952-1961

On November 25, 1952 the Federal Agency for Homeland Services (renamed the Federal Agency for Civic Education in 1963) was established in order to educate the German people about democratic principles and prevent any moves to re-establish a totalitarian regime.

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Bundespräsident Heinrich Lübke (r.) und seine Ehefrau Wilhelmine (l.) ehren die Gewinner des Schülerwettbewerbs 1964.

Growth and progress 1961-1969

In the 1960s, public debate began to focus on ways to deal intellectually with the legacy of the National Socialist regime. In 1963 the recently renamed Federal Agency for Civic Education organised its first study trip to Israel, two years before Germany and Israel would establish diplomatic relations.

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Erstausgabe der Politischen Zeitschrift (PZ) von 1971.

Transformation and reorganisation 1969-1981

In the 1970s the bpb underwent a series of structural and conceptual reforms. The Beutelsbach Consensus of 1976 defined three objectives for civic education that remain valid to this day.

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"Neue Medien werden unsere Zukunft mitbestimmen. Videorekorder, Kabelfernsehen, Bildschirmtext und Computer werden in Arbeit und Freizeit immer mehr Raum einnehmen" stellt eine Broschüre aus dem Jahr 1988 fest.

Consolidation and technical progress 1981-1989

In response to the emergence of the information society, in 1984 the bpb founded its New Media department and began to use more films in its civic education curricula. It also developed an educational concept for computer games as well as a teletext programme.

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Direktor Dr. Günter Reichert (l.) und Staatssekretär Dr. Horst Waffenschmidt (r.) beim 40 jährigen Jubiläum der Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung 1992.

Civic education in reunified Germany 1989-1998

Following the peaceful revolution in the autumn of 1989, the bpb began to operate in the GDR and later in the new federal Länder. It aimed to educate both parts of the population about each other's backgrounds, stimulate learning processes, and encourage mutual understanding.

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Jugendfestival Berlin 08: Im Juni 2008 kamen in Berlin mehrere tausend Jugendliche zusammen, um ein Wochenende mit mehr als 600 Workshops, Performances, Podiumsdiskussionen und Musik zu verbringen.

New agendas, new approaches 1999–2011

In 2001 the bpb underwent a comprehensive conceptual and organisational reform. New activities and services were developed that were targeted at new audiences and aimed to encourage children and adolescents, in particular, to engage in political participation.

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bpb Imagefilm
Media Library

The bpb at a glance

The German Federal Agency for Civic Education is something very special: It’s a government agency that provides Citizens in Germany with information about all areas of politics - explained in simple terms and without being tainted by party politics.

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The euro|topics press review presents debates and topics that matter to citizens across Europe. Euro|topics reflects the great variety of opinions, ideas and emotions on those issues. Whether politics, the economy, society or culture–euro|topics takes a daily look at roughly 300 European media and shares the most important voices in three languages.

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"Hipharpigland" is a children’s Internet site with a political theme. The name refers to the land of hippos, hares and pigs. The Hipharpiglanders, you see, are all trying to run a democracy together. There is already a government with Chancellor Barbara Broadfoot, Foreign Minister Earnest and Interior Minister Harold. But actually there is not much else that works. So join the fun. A new chapter of the comic is published every month!

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