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January 19 2021

The man who will take over as party leader after German chancellor Angela Merkel, endorses constructive journalism and asks for a Constructive Institute to be set up in Germany.

Armin Laschet, who is a former journalist and present Ministerpresident in Northrein-Westphalia, opened the global 24 Hours for the Future of Journalism Conference, hosted by Constructive Institute last month.

Armin Laschet, Ministerpresident in Northrein-Westphalia has been elected next party leader of the German CDU party.

“An exciting debate is underway over whether journalism could be “more constructive”,” Armin Laschet stated:

“This is not about journalism becoming less critical or being friendlier to the powerful or only reporting on positive subjects. It’s about asking whether journalism could be more nuanced or approach subjects from a different perspective. Whether it could provide more context or shed more light on developments that inspire courage. For my part, I prefer news articles that take this approach rather than reports that only focus on depressing news.”

Armin Laschet, who is in lead position to take over as chancellor in the biggest country in Europe expressed hope for more journalists, who “generate productive debates and conversations:

“I worry when I see fear being enhanced by hatred and hate speech on the internet. What we need is a culture of debate in which respect and a common perception of reality are the guiding principles… In order to change rigid thought patterns, we have to be open to trying new ideas and initiatives. This is why the Constructive Institute exists in Denmark, Mr Haagerup. And you have already achieved great things. In my opinion, though, one institute alone is not enough. That is why we are looking at ways in which politicians, journalists, media organisations and foundations can set up their own Constructive Institute to drive the process of change forward in Germany.

Watch the full thoughtful opening keynote by Armin Laschet below:

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