Anniversary Magazine

From the editorial page

Dear Readers,

Today the Robert Bosch Stiftung can look back on 50 successful years, an achievement it owes to the man who gave the Foundation its name. A man who, as a successful businessman and philanthropist, felt responsible for his country, and as a responsible citizen and pioneer of globalization, repeatedly championed for the change that was necessary. We do not want to forget that today – just like during his lifetime – the success of his company continues to form the economic foundation for sustainable, charitable activities.

Anyone who assumes responsibility for a foundation must set persuasive and transparent goals in dialog with the people and issues of the present day. And this is exactly what Robert Bosch decreed in his last will and testament – the duty to continually modernize a foundation’s activities and work. His charitable efforts should not live on as a memorial, but instead as an example of social responsibility in free democracy.

Nevertheless, charitable activities in dialog with the present day and its challenges do not exist in a vacuum free of retrospection. The Robert Bosch Stiftung’s main areas of focus – international relations, education, and health – were already the issues focused on by the founder during his time, and they remain astonishingly relevant today, as the articles in this issue demonstrate.

The wide variety of issues shares a common framework. They can be found in Robert Bosch’s own succinct explanation of the reasons behind his unusual career as a philanthropist: “The idealist is a materialist who is smart enough to realize that he cannot be the only one doing well.” This very pragmatic motto, with its extremely significant consequences for one’s own ethical position, is complemented by Robert Bosch’s entrepreunerial slogan: “It is better to lose money than trust.” This encompasses a basic attitude that is built on dialog, fairness, and social coherence.

Dialog is the medium for deescalating conflicts, the platform for the competition of ideas, and the key to understanding and friendship between our country’s neighbors in Europe and the world. As a foundation, we can only make a credible contribution if we also maintain a lively dialog with our partners in society during our day-to-day activities, since their input is an indispensable engine which powers our own innovation. As such, this anniversary issue is also a token of thanks to everyone who helps us do the right things at the right time.

Dr. Kurt W. Liedtke
Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Robert Bosch Stiftung

Das Magazin

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