Berlin Demography Forum – an initiative for all generations

A lot of countries of the Northern Hemisphere face fundamental demographic challenges that will affect all areas of our lives. Low birth rates coupled with increasing life expectancies influence the way in which generations live together, educational opportunities, the world of work and markets, and our pension and healthcare systems.

What incentives to start a family can sustainable politics provide? How can we better balance our professional and family life? Will immigration be sufficient to sustain the required labour force? How can we make our pension, healthcare, and long-term care systems fit for the future? Which values does our society need? Which best-practice models exist across the globe? And finally, how can we make the best use of the potential that our aging society offers?

The Berlin Demography Forum (BDF) is a global, cross-party platform providing a new impetus to raise the general public’s awareness of the significance of demographic change both at a national and international level. The forum brings together high-ranking politicians, scientists, business leaders, and representatives of international organizations and civil society to discuss potential solutions and contribute to this important debate.

The BDF is designed as an annual conference, tackling a variety of issues:

  • 1st BDF in 2012: “Families-Children-Society”
  • 2nd BDF in 2013: “Generations-Learning-Prosperity”
  • 3rd BDF in 2014: “Security–Trust–Solidarity”
  • 4th BDF in 2015: “Activity-Health-Participation”
  • 5th BDF in 2016: “Labour–Perspectives–Prosperity”
  • 6th BDF in 2017: “Learning and Integration”
  • 7th BDF in 2018: “Shaping the Future: Domestic and International Migration in Europe”
  • 8th BDF in 2019: “Diversity – Social Equity – Cohesion. Perspectives for Germany and Europe”
  • 9th BDF in 2021: “The baby boomers are retiring – opportunities and challenges”


The BDF is supported by the BDF Advisory Board. Members of the Advisory Board are
(as of May 2021):

Franz Müntefering, Former Federal Minister for Labour and Social Affairs (Head of BDF Advisory Board)

Ingo Behnel, Head of Department, Federal Ministry of Health

Prof. Dr. Volker Deville, CEO, F/L Think Tank eG, University of Bayreuth

Dr. Dr. h.c. Markus Dröge, Senior Bishop, Evangelical Church Berlin-Brandenburg-silesian Upper Lusatia

Dr. Andreas Edel, Executive Secretary, Population Europe, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research

Dr. Michael Frehse, Head of Directorate-General H, Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Ursula Lehr, Former Federal Minister

Ulrich Lilie, President, Diakonie Deutschland

Prof. Dr. Tilman Mayer, University of Bonn

Prof. Jörg Rocholl, PhD, President and EY Chair in Governance and Compliance, ESMT European School of Management and Technology

Prof. Dr. Norbert Schneider, Director, Federal Institute for Population Research

MD Prof. Dr. Matthias von Schwanenflügel, Head of Department, Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth



Dr. Andreas Edel, Executive Secretary, Population Europe, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research
Dr. Christian Oelschlägel, Diakonie Deutschland