Innovation

Combating the Fear of Technology

Wartung von Windkraftanlage
Wind power, like digitization, will be a part of Germany's future. Source: Julian Stratenschulte/DPA

For centuries, Germany has excelled with a wealth of technological brilliance and innovative leaps. From the invention of the printing press to Industrial Revolution success stories of companies like Bayer, Thyssen and Siemens, to name just a few examples.

Today, many of the small and medium-sized German companies that make up the famed “Mittelstand” are world champions of innovation, particularly in the areas of plant engineering and automotive supply.

However, this success cannot lead to complacency. On the contrary, we have to make sure innovation continues to flourish in Germany. This requires a joint effort by all participants – business, science, society and, of course, politics.

On Wednesday, innovation will be the subject of a congress held by the center-right Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union parliamentary party in the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament. Chancellor Angela Merkel will be taking part.

Here, we will outline three priorities: First, we have to assure that new laws and rules do not get in the way of our economy’s power to innovate. Accordingly, precautions have to be taken right from the beginning of the legislative process. That is why I welcome proposals from the business sector to make “innovation-friendliness” part of a test criteria for future laws. An independent national regulatory council should be commissioned with this task.

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