After Univ. Prof. Dr. Andreas Liening, Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences, was able to win former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder as a speaker for the last New Year's Symposium, Prof. Dr. Norbert Lammert, President of the German Bundestag, was added to the circle of top-class guests.
In the past few years, the President of the German Bundestag has not only experienced the development of a common Europe at first hand, but has also helped to shape it himself. Contrary to a pessimistic, deficit-oriented perspective on Europe that is sometimes prevalent in public opinion, Lammert described the European Union as the "most ambitious, demanding and intelligent blueprint for responding to the challenge of globalization". Europe may not be in the best possible shape, but - Lammert noted - the continent has never been in better shape. During a moderated discussion following the keynote address, Norbert Lammert was available to answer questions asked by the audience.
The evening offered a multi-perspective view of Europe and the importance of economic education for the region: In the run-up to the keynote speech, students from the Stadtgymnasium Dortmund, who were given the floor by principal Bernhard Koolen, spoke about Europe from the perspective of young people. Before that, Univ. Prof. Dr. Ursula Gather, Rector of TU Dortmund University, refered to current events in her welcoming speech and built a bridge to the key role of economic education in everyday life. Mayor Ullrich Sierau and Reinhard Schulz, Managing Director of the Dortmund Chamber of Commerce and Industry, joined in and in their greetings also emphasized the importance of economic education for the competitiveness of the region and gave the university a leading role in the structural change in Dortmund. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Liening illustrated the cooperation work of the city in the field of "Entrepreneurship", while Albrecht Ehlers, Chancellor of the TU Dortmund University, used the festive setting to award Andreas Schweighardt with the founder prize "tu>startup Award" for his project "The Ball Campaign". Bettina Pesch, Managing Director of the Theater Dortmund, stated in her closing words that she was pleased about the excellent cooperation between culture, science and city society.
The event was also musically convincing: soloists from the Dortmund Opera and the orchestra of the Stadtgymnasium offered musical variety and rounded off the evening. A champagne reception, which also gave guests the opportunity to talk to the President of the Bundestag in person, completed the New Year's Symposium.