Politics & Society

From economic crises and trade wars to the rise of populism and strained international cooperation, it seems that the United States and its European partners are growing apart on many levels. We follow the state of the transatlantic relationship and how politics and societies on both sides of the Atlantic are handling the global challenges of the 21st century. Our surveys, analysis, and multimedia content from short explainer videos to full-length documentaries bring these challenges to the fore, conveying both the personal impact and the big picture of the forces shaping transatlantic politics and societies.

Wisdom of the Crowd |

Wisdom of the Crowd

Welcome to “Wisdom of the Crowd”, a podcast miniseries that explores the future of transatlantic relations. From democracy and geopolitics to climate change and technology, we take a closer look at the most pressing issues impacting the transatlantic alliance by interviewing top experts and using a strategy of crowd-sourced forecasting. We don’t just rely on experts and policy makers; we listen to a crowd of forecasters, and YOU, to determine the outcome of future events. We call that “the wisdom of the crowd”. Wisdom of the Crowd is produced by the Bertelsmann Foundation, Are We Europe, and Awe Studio. Sound design is done by Stefano Montali and the podcast artwork is by Tamara Tasić. This series is hosted by Rylie Munn.

Talking Transatlantic Affairs

Talking Transatlantic Affairs is a series of interviews in which folks from around Washington, DC share their thoughts and personal reflections on the transatlantic relationship.

Talking Transatlantic Affairs |
Transatlantic Periscope |

Transatlantic Periscope

The Transatlantic Periscope is an interactive, multimedia tool that brings together expert commentary, high-quality media coverage, official policy documents, quantitative data, social media posts, and gray literature.



RANGE (Rethinking Assumptions in a New Geostrategic Environment) is a crowdsourced forecasting program focused on geopolitics and the transatlantic relationship.

Transatlantic Barometer |

Transatlantic Barometer

The Transatlantic Barometer’s main fixture is a website that provides users with a synopsis of the policy positions and engagement of 30 key transatlantic actors: the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union, as well as its 27 member states.

System Updates

System Updates is a reflection of the conversations and debates that spanned the Bertelsmann Foundation Fellowship (BFF) in 2023. Our eleven fellows and two guest authors lay out how the EU and the U.S. can build a future of work that works for all.

System Updates |

Emerging Ties

Emerging Ties is a reflection of the conversations and debates that spanned the Bertelsmann Foundation Fellowship (BFF) in 2022. Our nine fellows and guest author lay out the ways in which the EU and the U.S. can further engage with developing countries and encourage positive global change.

Emerging Ties |

The Policy Prism Newsletter

The Policy Prism is a quarterly newsletter providing the latest on transatlantic legislative news to policymakers on both sides of the Atlantic.

The Policy Prism Newsletter |

Transatlantic Trends 2022

The geopolitical turmoil of 2022 presents a multitude of challenges for the transatlantic community. From Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and China’s geostrategic ambitions to the worsening climate crisis and democratic backsliding, greater transatlantic cooperation is of paramount importance. In the face of such challenges, the transatlantic community has largely shown resolve, yet divergences in interests among partners remain.

Transatlantic Trends 2022 |
Bridging the Atlantic |

Bridging the Atlantic

Bridging the Atlantic is a 6-part miniseries, created with Are We Europe, that will take stock of transatlantic relations today and examine it beyond the usual touchstones. After a tumultuous four years with the Trump administration, many following the transatlantic relationship are eager to understand how the transatlantic relationship can bounce back and become more resilient in the future. But a reset is perhaps not the right goal.

Cross-Cutting Currents

The U.S. and Europe have an opportunity to engage closely on a broad range of challenges in 2022. To that end, the Bertelsmann Foundation has produced Cross-Cutting Currents, a transatlantic primer, as a foundational and introductory resource for those who seek a better understanding of the transatlantic relationship. This publication addresses the most pressing issues affecting five of the transatlantic community’s key actors—the U.S., Germany, France, Italy, and the UK.

Cross-Cutting Currents |

Green Ideas

Wildfires. Blistering temperatures. Hurricanes. Earthquakes. Melting Ice Caps. The natural disasters that will be exacerbated by climate change are numerous. The statistics coming out of every report about what has been dubbed the anthropogenic era describe a very dark future—one that might cause feelings of hopelessness and desperation.

Green Ideas |

Transatlantic Trends 2021

2021 opens a new chapter for the transatlantic relationship. The change of the U.S. administration as well as the political, economic, and societal implications of the coronavirus pandemic have redefined transatlantic policy dialogues. New priorities have emerged, as the calls for increased cooperation around climate change and common values signal an opportunity for an update of the transatlantic agenda.

Transatlantic Trends 2021 |

Federalism in Crisis

In the United States and Germany, two countries with federal systems of government, responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have varied considerably. While conflict and dysfunction have embodied the U.S. response, cooperative and unified strategies have underpinned Germany’s approach. Federalism in Crisis explores these contrasting developments by elucidating the key characteristics of both the U.S. and German federal systems and examining how they have impacted responses to the crisis.

Federalism in Crisis |

Transatlantic Trends 2020

2020 has been marked by an unprecedented series of political, economic, and societal shocks that have tested the resilience of the transatlantic relationship.From the Covid-19 pandemic and its global implications, to regional issues such as the risk of military escalation with Iran, to purely transatlantic matters like the withdrawal of American troops from Germany, the United States and Europe have experienced a multiplicity of crises that challenge the terms of the transatlantic partnership.

Transatlantic Trends 2020 |


Cleantech Entrepreneurship Education

Building a Transnational Initiative

Francesco Matteucci is an innovation manager with 20 years of experience spent as a researcher in materials science, as a Corporate R&D Manager within the field of technologies for renewable energy production and storage, and as an intermediary of knowledge trying to exploit the research results...

Europe once stretched into Algeria

The French Empire’s bid for a European Algeria—and the French Republic’s crusade against an Algerian France

“We had French nationality, but not French citizenship. We were part of Europe, but we were not European. We were immigrants, but not foreigners.” Sitting in a Parisian café, my great-uncle reminisces about when he and his brother answered France’s call for cheap manual labor in the 1950s.

Shifting Identities: From Victims to Changemakers

An interview with José Luis Loera

José Luis Loera is the co-founder of Programa Casa Refugiados, a UNHCR-backed non-profit organization in Mexico that works to promote the rights of people displaced by violence. He is the head of the organization’s board of directors and leads the “Education for Peace” team, supporting the long-term...


On October 3, 1990, the carefully negotiated Unification Treaty took effect, and over four decades of divided Germany came to a legal end. Reunification also meant the dissolution of the German Democratic Republic (GDR), a socialist workers’ state born out of the Soviet Union’s occupied zone...

The Changing Spirit of the Fifth Republic

In March, French President Emmanuel Macron invoked Article 49.3 of his country’s constitution to push through an increase in the retirement age from 62 to 64 over the next seven years. The provision allows the government to bypass a parliamentary vote and force a bill into law, and it is deeply...

Turning the Key to Maltese Identity

The blue waters surrounding the Maltese archipelago run as deep as the nation’s multicultural roots. Located approximately 60 miles from the southern coast of Sicily and 186 miles from the northern coast of Libya, Malta is commonly referred to as the stepping stone between the European and African...