For Innovators of the Public Sector

The “Creative Bureaucracy Festival” attracts once a year the innovators from the Public Sector on all levels (from the educator to the Minister, from the municipality to international organisation) and the interested public to an extraordinary festival in Berlin.

CBF 2018


    Save the Date: Creative Bureaucracy Festival 2019
    20-22 September 2019 at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin


    Creative Bureaucracy Festival 2018

    Now it is official: two days at the Humboldt University Berlin, nine stages, 100 programme items, 165 outstanding speakers from all over the world, more than 1,200 guests, a spectacular farewell over the roofs of Neukölln – they really do exist, the creative bureaucrats.

    On 7 / 8 September 2018 the first Creative Bureaucracy Festival took place and encouraged visitors to improve the Public Sector with new ideas and initiatives and to network.

    The Creative Bureaucracy Festival was opened by Governing Mayor Michael Müller and Berlin’s biggest job interview, during which Michael Müller was promoting Common good as a career and the Land Berlin as an attractive employer. During two festival days many best practices of Creative Bureaucracy from all over the world were presented, which highlighted how administration can be successful and the huge potential in the Public Sector.

    The learnings from failures of public authorities were presented, amongst others, by BER CEO Engelbert Lütke Daldrup and ex Lageso head Sebastian Muschter during the so-called FuckUp Night on the first evening. During the farewell party on the next day the Creative Bureaucracy Festival was brought to a fitting conclusion in the roof culture garden Klunkerkranich.

    Creative Bureaucracy – the Initiative

    GOAL: Increase in innovations in the Public Sector; recognition and exchange of innovators; recruitment of performance-oriented, innovative young talents; improvement of the public perception of the Public Sector and its innovative strength.

    TARGET GROUP: Innovators from the Public Sector on all levels; young talents; the interested public and the media; institutions which support innovations in the Public Sector (eg foundations) and companies; citizens who are committing themselves in NGOs or as individuals in the design of the Public Sector: this is also expressed by the motto of the Festival: “You work for the common good. You have ideas. This is not a contradiction. This is your Festival.” 

    AWARD WINNERS: During the first Festival three outstanding personalities were presented with the Creative Bureaucracy Award:

    Jutta Weitz // As a staff member of the municipal housing administration Berlin Mitte, Weitz has allocated empty commercial premises around the Auguststraße area to people engaged in arts and culture. Her commitment and foresightedness has created the structures of this art district.

    Christian Bason // As director of the MindLab, one of the first interministerial innovation labs around the world, he advised the Danish government on the renewal of the public administration and contributed his valuable experience as a consultant.

    Gabriella Gómez-Mont // As head of the innovation lab Laboratorio para la Ciudad in Mexico City she has launched projects such as “City of Children” in challenging urban districts. She relies on her experience as an artist, documentary filmmaker and journalist.

    For the Creative Bureaucracy Festival 2019 a decentralised contest is planned with award winners on the municipal, regional and national level.

    INITIATORS: The initiative goes back to the urban researcher Charles Landry (author of “The Creative Bureaucracy”) and Tagesspiegel publisher Sebastian Turner (the publishing house acts as organiser). During several preparatory meetings an international group of initiators has come together (including representatives of the OECD, Eurocities, the German Government, the Land Berlin, the Danish Design Center, the German Association of Towns and Municipalities, the Regulatory Control Council (NKR), Nesta (UK), the European Cultural Foundation, the Humboldt University of Berlin, the University of Potsdam, Viadrina, Fraunhofer, Bertelsmann Foundation, Robert Bosch Foundation, Future Berlin Foundation, Telekom Foundation, Zeit Foundation, Politics for Tomorrow). This group is open to admit additional partners.

    FINANCING: The Festival is made possible through the commitment of its participants. Grants by foundations and public institutions as well as contributions from sponsors and exhibitors are striven for. The admission fees (EUR 19 – EUR 29) are deliberately very moderate to allow all levels of the Public Sector to attend. Participation scholarships will again be awarded to junior participants in 2019.

    E-MAGAZINE: We recommend as a supplement to the Festival our free-of-charge e-magazine on the Berlin administration reform. Tagesspiegel has asked experts: what has to change in Berlin? The guest contributions resulting therefrom were collected in this digital special edition.

    *GENIUS LOCI: Thanks to its foundation history – the Prussian reforms are considered as outstanding administrative innovations – and its current scientific activities, the Humboldt University is an excellent venue for the Festival. We thank the University for the good co-operation and are looking forward to the Creative Bureaucracy Festival 2019 at the Humboldt University.