Dr. Lohr introduced herself by saying that she was responsible for designing and facilitating the planning of the Morgenstadt Concept, to be executed in partnership by the federal government and the private sector. Morgenstadt can be translated as “Tomorrow-town,” a concept that incorporates many of the features we might expect in the living environment of the coming decades.
The High-Tech Strategy for Germany40, of which the Morgenstadt Concept is a part, has been developed primarily by the federal government, she began. Its goal is to help create and nurture markets, deepen and broaden the cooperation between science and industry, and foster innovation as a basis for national health and well-being. The high-tech strategy is a mission-oriented approach designed to establish Germany as a pioneer in science- and technology-based solutions in five areas: climate and energy, health and nutrition, mobility, safety, and communication. As part of the High-Tech Strategy, 11 “forward looking projects” have also been identified as fields of activity. The task for the planners of Tomorrow-town was to develop a visionary concept for illustration purposes—not only for Morgenstadt, but also for other forward-looking projects that might cumulatively create a picture of the future as well as a communication tool. The project seeks to “have something in writing” as the starting point of “a big dream” that can help society reach desirable but challenging goals.
The basic idea behind Tomorrow-town, she continued, is to prepare for challenges already known, beginning with patterns of living. While cities cover only about 1 percent of the earth’s surface, for example, they generate 75 percent of global energy demand and about 80 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, primarily carbon dioxide. By the year 2050, approximately 70 percent of the world population will live in cities.
Because cities will be the first areas to confront the major challenges anticipated by scientists—climate changes, shortage of resources, population growth—the decision was made to focus on a German city which has an unusually a long history rather than using a green-field approach of building something from scratch, which is sometimes much easier.
39Grolman.Result is a private consulting firm that specializes in the development and implementation of strategies within an organization.
40The High-Tech Strategy 2020 for Germany is a major planning document of the DIW, first produced in 2006 and updated in 2010. The aim of the High-Tech Strategy (HTS) is “to create lead markets, intensify cooperation between science and industry, and continue to improve the general conditions for innovation.” <http://www.bmbf.de/en/6618.php>.