Debate earnestly,
act decisively

The ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS is committed to promoting an active and open civil society. Towards this end, it supports a culture of debate. For it is only through debate – by wrestling with different ideas, by weighing the value in divergent perspectives, by embracing genuine exchange – that we can learn from one another and breathe life into our fundamental democratic values.

Accordingly, the foundation focuses on areas characterized by tension and transition. Through the numerous projects that we sponsor and organize, we aim to initiate and foster change. Whether relating to the sciences, culture, education, politics, society or the media, we defend individual and societal liberty, create space for expression and offer necessary orientation. In this way, we empower individuals and encourage them to become advocates for an open society.

Based on these convictions, the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS founded Bucerius Law School in 2000, Germany’s first foundation-endowed law school. It also promotes academic freedom and science communication and extends scholarships to junior researchers. The foundation paves the way for educational success and lifelong learning with the mentoring program WEICHENSTELLUNG (“Setting the Course”), a project featuring many partners and reaching beyond the borders of Hamburg. Further, the foundation is actively engaged in strengthening independent media in Eastern Europe and, no less, in defending freedom of the press in Germany, thereby strengthening independent reporting and the free flow of information.

The Bucerius Kunst Forum, established in 2002 as an international exhibition venue in the heart of Hamburg, underscores the importance of the foundation’s “Art and Culture” division. The foundation has a keen interest in preserving culture, and it participates in the safeguarding of important cultural monuments; support is provided to promising talent in the fields of theater, music, and art. In terms of its international activities, the promotion of intercultural dialogue is a central aim, whereby particular emphasis is placed on Central and Eastern Europe and providing support to the Bucerius Institute at the University of Haifa in Israel. The Bucerius Summer School brings international leaders from all over the world together in Hamburg. The foundation’s “Politics” division focuses on the role of civil society, particularly in East Germany.

Our founders, Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius, believed that skillful intervention and fearless engagement were essential for a democratic society. This vision shaped their design of the weekly newspaper DIE ZEIT, and it was in this same spirit, in 1971, that Gerd Bucerius founded the ZEIT-Stiftung (today the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS) as a voice and forum for an introspective civil society. From 1997 to 2022, Michael Göring was a member of the ZEIT-Stiftung’s executive board and later its chair. Among other initiatives, he oversaw the founding of the Bucerius Law School and the Bucerius Kunst Forum and established projects such as the Bucerius Summer School and the WEICHENSTELLUNG mentoring program. From 2010 to 2021, Michael Berndt was chief financial officer of the ZEIT-Stiftung and played a key role in shaping the foundation. Manuel Hartung has been chair of the executive board of the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS since 2022; Achim Lange took over as chairman Finance, Administration, Human Resources in 2021.

Inquisitive, dialogue-oriented, tolerant, open-minded and feisty: these are the values underlying the culture of debate that the foundation has resolutely supported since its inception.

“Genuine freedom means risk” – Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius

Tireless intervention, defending the rights of others, fighting for what you believe, the willingness to be a nuisance, understanding when freedom was threatened: These are the principles that Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius lived, worked and acted under. For Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius, a democratic society and an unapologetic culture of debate were not contradictory; to the contrary, they went hand-in-hand. Both of them acted on this conviction throughout their lives. In 1971, more than fifty years ago, Gerd Bucerius founded the ZEIT-Stiftung, now the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS, with the aim of promoting an open and active civil society.

Gerd and Ebelin Bucerius were pioneers. He, the multi-talent who even before his career as a publisher and founder was already a successful lawyer, politician, journalist and entrepreneur.  She, a woman who left her incomparable mark on the ZEIT publishing house in Hamburg as managing director from 1951. They married in 1947. One year earlier, Gerd Bucerius had co-founded the weekly newspaper ZEIT; later he acquired a majority stake in the magazine "Stern".

Born in 1906, Gerd Bucerius had enough drive for several lifetimes. His rebellious, sharp mind was evident from an early age: already in 1924, Bucerius had criticized bourgeois society and the German empire in his thesis concluding his pre-university studies. After studying law, he worked – from 1932 – as a lawyer in his father's law firm, also defending Jewish clients during the Nazi era. In 1946, after the end of the war, he became a building and construction senator in Hamburg. He joined the Frankfurt Economic Council in 1948, and a year later he took his place in the first German Bundestag as a pugnacious member of the CDU.

Gerd and Ebelin – born Anna Gertrud Müller – had met previously in occupied France After their marriage, her straightforward manner and wit helped her transform their shared Bonn domicile into a social meeting place. In 1962, Gerd Bucerius resigned from the CDU in the wake of the "Hellfire Affair – a conflict which saw him place freedom of the press above his own party-based political involvement.

For many years, Ebelin Bucerius managed with great skill the publishing house that was responsible for producing DIE ZEIT, the print product undoubtedly most important to her husband – and its publisher – Gerd. Together, they also mastered difficult economic times. For Gerd, such financial struggle was an inherent element of the tasks at hand: “Genuine freedom means risk.” Decades of losses at the weekly newspaper could be offset only by selling the Stern magazine. In 1965, Gerd Bucerius invested his majority stake in the publishing house of Gruner und Jahr. He later exchanged these shares for stock in Bertelsmann. Ultimately, he was able to separate DIE ZEIT from the Bertelsmann Group and continued to run it, now through its own publishing house – the Zeitverlag. As publisher, advisor and publicist, he remained closely linked with the newspaper and repeatedly contributed essays as a “confrontational spirit”. Shortly before his death, he specified the sale of the paper to the Georg von Holtzbrinck Publishing Group, a direction carried out by the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS in 1996.

After the death of Gerd Bucerius (1995) and Ebelin Bucerius (1997), their assets went to the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS, which was tasked with acting in their spirit and interests. Together, they created a lasting legacy for freedom and democracy that is today more important than ever. Ralf Dahrendorf's biography “Liberal und unabhängig. Gerd Bucerius und seine Zeit” offers a comprehensive look at the life and work of these two special people. It is their understanding of social commitment that the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS has promoted and implemented since its establishment, advancing their vision with passionately designed projects, initiatives and events.


Team Chairman of the Board of Directors

Professor Manuel J. Hartung
CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board


Annette König
Assistant to the Chairman of the Board of Directors

+49 40 41336850

Susanne Pagel
Head of Board Office

+49 40 41336855


Mira Schlüter

+49 40 41336853

Team Financial Director

Achim Lange
Chairman Finance, Administration, Human Resources

+49 40 413366

Judith Strand
Board Secretary

+49 40 41336952

Karin Wandenelis
Accounts and Human Resources ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS

+49 40 41336950

Kirsten Wittek
Accounts Bucerius Kunst Forum
Deutsche Nationalstiftung

+49 40 41336953

Team Communication/ Journalism and Media

Jessica Staschen
Director/Head Communication/ Journalism and Media Division

+49 40 41336872

Kirsten Drees

+49 40 41336872

Robin Micha
Editorial Journalist

+49 40 41336873

Dorit Schartau

+49 40 41336870

Andrea Westphal

+49 40 41336874

Dr. Amelie Zimmermann
Director Bucerius Lab

+49 40 41336914

Team Funding Division

Christine Neuhaus
Executive Director
Head of Funding Division

+49 40 41336915

Meike Egge
Project Manager

+49 40 41336913

Saskia Helin

+49 40 41336915

Team Research & Scholarship

Dr. Anna Hofmann
Director/Head of Research and Scholarship

+49 40 41336785

Rosenka Babinets
Project Manager

+49 40 41336770

Matthias Koch
Project Manager

+49 40 41336786

Luis Rieken
Project Manager

+49 40 41336861

Christin Wöhlcke
Assistant Research and Scholarship

+49 40 41336709

Team Education & Training

Tatiana Matthiesen, Ph.D.
(New School University)
Director/Head of Education and Training

+49 40 41336842

Marcella Christiani, M.A.
Project Manager

+49 40 41336846

Julie Demtröder
Project Manager

+49 40 41336845

Wiebke Deneke

+49 40 41336843


Lissy Neumann

+49 40 41336862


Jörn Ruge

+49 40 41336863

Judith Strand

+49 40 41336952

Katrin Wischert
Project Manager

+49 40 41336844


Alexandra Reinhardt

+49 40 41336864

Margarethe Böttcher

+49 40 41336865

Team Politics & Society

Sascha Suhrke
Director/Head of Politics and Society

+49 40 41336717

Dörthe Boose
Project Manager

+49 40 41336780

Anja Clausen

+49 40 41336742

Helen Oqueka

+49 40 41336750

Tim Sievert
Project Manager

+49 40 41336916

Team Art & Culture

Stefanie Jaschke-Lohse
Program Director Art and Culture

+49 40 41336860

Andrea Schnäckel

+49 40 41336852

Natalya Stupka
Junior Project Manager

+49 40 41336869

Alumni Program

Petra Borchard, M.A.
Program Director Alumni Relations

+49 40 41336791

Organizational Development

Mirjam Büttner

+49 40 41336790

Archive & Data Protection

Dipl. Arch. Axel Schuster

+49 40 41336790

Team House Management

Heidi Bühler Becker

+49 40 41336710

Thomas Gland
Systems Administrator

+49 40 41336702


Benjamin Koch
Company Technician

+49 40 41336704

Katharina Schmanns

+49 40 413366

Andreas Tröbs
Systems Administrator

+49 40 41336706

Christin Wöhlcke

+49 40 413366

Board of Trustees

Prof. Dr. Burkhard Schwenker


Prof. Dr. Alena Buyx


Prof. Dr. Doris König


Prof. Dres. h.c. Manfred Lahnstein


Giovanni di Lorenzo


Dr. Thomas de Maizière


Fritz Horst Melsheimer


Dr. Thomas Mirow


Christina Rau


Dagmar Reim


Carola Gräfin von Schmettow


Dr. Harald Vogelsang


Prof. Dr. Christina Weiss



Bucerius Kunst Forum

The Bucerius Kunst Forum is an international exhibition venue in the heart of Hamburg that was initiated and established by the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS in 2002. In the spirit of the founders, the aim is to promote fine art on a continuing basis and make it accessible to a broad public.

In keeping with this aim, the Bucerius Kunst Forum regularly presents exhibitions of art from all over the world – dating from antiquity to the present day – all accompanied by an extensive array of educational programs and events.

The Bucerius Kunst Forum aims to stimulate new thoughts and help guide public discourse regarding major social issues. With its interdisciplinary program of events, including regular guided tours, concerts, lectures, discussions, yoga sessions, workshops, parties and readings, it serves as a setting for cultural and social exchange and a full-spectrum forum for the arts.

The more than 3.5 million visitors that have been received thus far demonstrate the success of the concept. Within a short period of time, the Bucerius Kunst Forum has, moreover, earned the trust of the world's most important museums, allowing the Kunst Forum to enrich its exhibitions with unique loans.

In its 2023 selection of exhibitions, the Bucerius Kunst Forum focused on the works of female artists. By doing so, the museum focused on the structural discrimination encountered by women, a practice which has for centuries also been prevalent in the visual arts and especially art history.

Further information is available at

Through its funding of the Bucerius Kunst Forum, the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS emphasizes its commitment to art and culture as well as the central role both play in furthering dialogue and public participation.

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Bucerius Law School

Bucerius Law School in Hamburg is Germany’s first foundation-endowed law school and, with its innovative approach towards international and practice-oriented legal education, it numbers among the countries leading institutes of higher education.

Consistent with the mission of its founders, the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS established the law school in 2000 with the aim of modernizing legal education and adapting it to the changing demands and reality of the legal world. Further, it had been the long-standing ambition of Gerd Bucerius to enhance the role of German legal scholarship within international discourse.

Bucerius Law School has from the start been a pioneering institution. It is boldly breaking new ground in teaching and research and is constantly engaged in constructive dialogue with practitioners. In addition to its commitment to academic excellence and an international perspective, the law school also champions diversity, community spirit and societal service.

The law school’s accomplished graduates enjoy high standing on the job market. Each year, roughly 100 new students are accepted based on their individual qualifications. Scholarships and an innovative fee system make the law school accessible to all talented applicants, regardless of their financial situation.

As the central sponsor of Bucerius Law School, a non-profit academic institution, the ZEIT STIFTUNG BUCERIUS has for more than 22 years promoted academic freedom, fostered excellence in scholarship, teaching and research, and created further avenues social engagement and public dialogue.

Further information is available at:

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