Conditions for Institutional and Cultural Innovation in German and Greek cities

Project scope

Some cities manage to mobilize innovation potentials and respond to challenges like demographic change and immigration as well as economic restructuring, while others do not. The research project address the problem of lacking innovation and how it can be solved by asking the following question: "What are the conditions for the development of cultural and institutional innovation in local government and local civil society?"

To answer this question, i.e. to identify these conditions, a comparison of five German and five Greek cities is carried out. These cities are selected because they are perceived by the respective local community as well as in the German resp. Greek debate as success cases of innovation in local government and local civil society.

From this perspective it is also reasonable to define innovation not in an abstract and general way but to contextualise the definition of innovation, i.e. to take the notion (meaning) of innovation seriously into account which has emerged in the context of a given case (the city or the particular country). Such an approach requires a qualitative research.

Research findings will be concrete outcomes (like reflections about the formation, functioning and effects of networks, as for example ‘Innovathens’ or ‘Impact Hub’ in Greece). These findings will be discussed and disseminated in both countries with partners who have strong links to possible end-users (municipalities and other local actors). Furthermore, dissemination is also planned across a wider international context – such as countries in the Black Sea region and China.

  Name Working area(s) Contact
apl. Prof. Dr. Björn Egner
Methodology in Political Science and Philosophy of Science
+49 6151 16-57339
S3|12 443
Prof. Dr. Hubert Heinelt
Retired Professor
Public Administration, Public Policy and Local Politics
+49 6151 16-57362
S3|12 443
Melina Lehning M.A.
Research Associate
Methodology in Political Science and Philosophy of Science

Sponsor: Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung

Project duration: 04/2018-03/2021

Funding amount: € 415.000

Prof. Dr. Nikolaos-Komninos Hlepas, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

Prof. Dr. Georgios Terizakis, Hessische Hochschule für Polizei und Verwaltung (HfPV)