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DVPB   ➞   German Association for Political/Civic Education (DVPB)

German Association for Political/Civic Education (DVPB)

founded in 1965 

„For our society and its citizens political education is a matter of self-preservation. A free democracy will collaps without political education…“

Former Federal President, Dr. Johannes Rau, Germany 

The Professionals for Political/Civic Education 

The „German Association for Political/Civic Education“ (DVPB) is

  • a professional association of politics /civic education teachers and of teachers of related subjects (e.g. history, geography, economics) who teach these subjects with the objectives of political/civic education in mind
  • a professional association of scientists in the didactics of political/civic education, in social sciences and other related disciplines
  • a professional association of experts in political/civic education in youth and adult education, outside of school.

Objectives and Tasks

The „German Association for Political/Civic Education“ (DVPB) is an association of teachers, scientists and adult educationalists who are committed to political/civic education and the democratic, political culture of our society.
Democracy needs democrats and democrats are not born as such. They must first acquire political skills and then learn how to use them in a democracy. The lack of political skills amongst its citizens causes damage to democracy.
But citizens also need these skills in order to be aware of their rights and their chances of participation and these can only be conveyed through political education.
The DVPB is the leading professional association for political/civic education in Germany; it sees itself both as a partner and as a critic of the public institutions which are responsible for political/civic education.
The DVPB firmly advocates the necessity of a special subject for political/civic education – it can be called „politics“, „social studies“, „economics/politics“ or something else – which is based on disciplines of social sciences (political sciences, economics, sociology etc.) as sciences of reference. It clearly sees itself as a professional association of teachers of these subjects.
Further, the DVPB directs its attention to representatives of the subject history and other subjects, who want to teach their lessons with political/civic education in mind . It approaches university teachers of the relevant disciplines and didactics, and experts in political/civic adult education and youth work.
The work of the German Association for Political/Civic Education is not bound by denomination and is above party politics.
The essential condition for us is the orientation according to the basic rights and principles of a free, social and plural democracy. This also applies to the inner structure of our association. 

Structure and Organization 

The German Association for Political/Civic Education is made up of the associations in the individual German states. These are independent as far as inner – state matters are concerned, within the framework of the general aims of the DVPB.
The Associations in each state elect their own board of management. Their task is to represent their interests in each State Parliament, each state Ministry of Science and Culture, each state Head Office for Political/Civic Education and in the state institutions of further education for teachers etc.
Considering the cultural and educational autonomy of each state, the area of responsibility of the state Associations and their boards of management is particularly important.
The Federal Executive Board represents the interests of the Association in the Federal Parliament, the Federal Ministries, the Federal Agency for Civic Education and in other institutions. The Federal Executive Board regularly organizes further education activities and the Federal Conventions for Political/Civic Education nationwide. Further, it administers the independent research fund „Psychology of political/civic educational work“.
The Association issues the nationwide journal „POLIS – A Report of the German Association for Political/Civic Education“. POLIS comes out quarterly and members receive it regularly. 

Participation and Membership 

The importance and effectiveness of the German Association for Political/Civic Education depends on the number and the commitment of its members. The more members we have who work actively for the realisation of our aims, the more we can serve political education and each individual. At present there are about 3000 committed members!
If you also participate in our work, then you will strengthen your own cause and ours. You can become a member of the DVPB by applying for membership with one of the State Associations.
The membership fees are set by the State Associations. At present they are between 14,- and 40,- € per year. The DVPB is recognized as a non-profit-making organization; all fees and donations are tax-deductible.
Please contact your state Association and request further material. You can also contact any member of the Federal Executive Board. You will find all the addresses below or overleaf. Our homepage is: www.dvpb.de
If you are also of the opinion

  • that political/civic education in a democracy is an essential part of general education and thus, it must be an important area of responsibility of school and adult educational work,
  • that political/civic learning requires a separate subject in the curriculum, beside history and geography, which is based on social sciences as disciplines of reference,
  • that such a subject (politics/civics, social studies, politics/economics etc) must be given an appropriate number of lessons to be taught in the lower grades and in the sixth form,
  • that the teaching of political/civic education requires teachers qualified in social and political sciences,
  • that within the framework of both, training and in-service-training and out-of-school youth work, political/civic education must not have a less important status than is accorded there to vocational qualifications,
  • that in order to guarantee a sustainable development for the future, well-educated and above all responsible and politically committed citizens who take on responsibility in the economy, society and politics are a decisive factor,
  • that a lobby of political/civic education belongs to the democratic essence of a civil society,
    you should find out more about the DVPB and become a member because democracy demands political/civic education.

Federal Executive Board 

Prof. Dr. Tonio Oeftering 

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