It’s the people that matter!!!


posted by on English, India Project, Livin' my Life, Model G8, Uni

Dear all,

it has been quite a while since I posted something. I would like to use this post to explain to some extent what kept me so busy over the last couple of weeks and thank some wonderful people that I had the pleasure to work with.

G8/G20 Youth Summit

The project that dominated my life over the last couple of weeks was certainly the G8/G20 Youth Summit. I already told you about the project in some older blog posts so I’m not going to do it again. In brief: The summit is the youth equivalent to the real G8/G20 Summit and seeks to give our generation a voice in the process that is hopefully going to be heard.

In Germany, Model G8 Germany e.V. is responsible for the entire organization, preparation and coordination of the German delegation’s participation to the summit. As discussed in my last entry, we went through a pretty straight forward selection process that led us to three highly qualified candidates per position. The impartial jury had the difficult task to find the best delegation possible.

Early February the selected candidates began their preparation. Being the Head of Summit Organization, I started together with a friend of mine to prepare them. The delegates had to come up with a variety of tasks and each monday a telephone conference call would bring all of them together.

Aside from preparing the delegation, a huge amount of time went into organizational stuff around the summit itself and the workshop we organized in Berlin last weekend. In order to prepare our delegates as best as possible, we arranged for them to meet not only representatives from the real ministries, but as well from the Sherpa-Office in the chancellery. Moreover, we managed to organize within 4 weeks a pretty well-received public event, where we presented our delegation to the public and had a panel discussion about the topic „G8, G20 or UN – Who’s going to rule the world?“. The panel encompassed a variety of distinguished panelists such as Prof. Dr. Hüfner (DGVN), Dr. Christian Humborg (Transparency International), Vincent Klassen (Canadian Embassy) and of course „our“ chancellor, Nicole Bogott. Andre Wilkens (Stiftung Mercator) moderated the discussion and afterwards a reception gave everybody the possibility to get in touch with the delegates.

The public event – as well as the workshop for the delegation – took place in the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA School of Governance, which we won 5 weeks ago as a partner. The school provides us not only with an office and facilities for purposes such as the workshop but has been a outstanding partner in every aspect. Only the cooperation gave us the opportunity to create such a great time not only for our delegates, but as well for our guests.

Both, workshop and event, went really well and happy faces were all around. However, basically Flo and I did the entire organizational part and I have to admit, I really really underestimated the workload. Managing the contacts with the school, the ministries, the chancellery, the delegates and others that were involved really challenged me and my time management to an extent that my „hobby“ turned into a full-time job. To that aspect you’ve to know that we’re a very small team that is trying to prepare the delegation as best as we can – but we really lack personal. Over the last couple of weeks it was normal for me to start working for the workshop/event/delegation at 9am up to 12pm with a minor lunch break. Afterwards I would research and write for another 2-3 hours on the India report…
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The India Report

Many of you know that I spend three month in India last year and conducted a research project on e-waste. While the presentation in class took place in late January, the report, jointly written by three friends of mine and me, was due this Friday. Having been buried with all the work described above, I used nearly every free minute I got to read through studies and reports to add substance to the interviews I conducted back in Delhi. By the time I started writing, I was way behind my schedule and thus ran into really big time problems. Not only did I start to sleep only a few hours per day, but as well the quality of my (english) written work suffered a lot due to working under constant time-pressure. For the report, the US, EU and India were analyzed and while I focussed on India, we had to come up with a joint report. While working together with the others was really awesome, it’s always a challenge to coordinate the work of four people into one coherent report. Accordingly we had set ourselves deadlines that I unfortunately did not make. Thus, as being the responsible person to do the final touches on the report in terms of layout, I ran into huge trouble by the end of last week. The only way to keep the deadline on Friday for me was to reduce my sleeping time again down to three hours… I did not eat anything throughout the entire day, left my room only once for taking a shower and was basically nailed onto my desk for 15 hours. Somehow I made it but when I finally left my room to get something to eat and drink I was shivering for quite some time…

My Internship at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

Well, on top of all the mentioned things I’m currently doing an internship at the PIK. When I started back in January I already made an agreement with my boss that I would only work half of the week to be able to do the above mentioned stuff. However, as you probably figured by now that did not work out at all. While I tried hard to make it work, it was just not feasible to come up with the paper I was expected to write for the PIK. To this end I have to say that I’m really really lucky to have a very nice boss that agreed to the „output counts“ way of doing it and gave me huge leeway. While I managed to research for the paper and read through a lot of reports and studies (I’m going to write about China’s domestic climate policies) I did not manage to write a single word until now. While my internship would normally end in two days, I’m very happy that I got an extension over a month so I’m now going to spend all my time on China… 😉 – well not all, the summit is in May in Vancouver, so I will still be busy with the preparation too, but not as much as in the past.


Well, I think you agree with me when I say that I was way to optimistic in terms of what I can do in three month, really underestimated the work that I would have to do and thus reached my absolute limit. I have not seen friends „just for a beer“ in weeks and probably some of you already wondered why they haven’t heard from me for such a long time. I’m very sorry for that and I promise that I will get in touch with you anytime soon 🙂

Moreover there are a few people that deserve a big thank you as well as an apology. First of, Alex, Alex and Yvonne, you are just awesome! I could not have wished for a better team to do the project report and I think we did an awesome job. Moreover, the Model G8 Team needs to be congratulated for what we achieved. The biggest credit goes to Flo who saved my ass more than a thousand times and was the best co-worker I’ve ever worked with! Just as much Flo did, everybody else of the team rocked over the last few weeks, especially Jessi, Nick, Dana, Mareike and Inken. Guys, you are just as crazy as I am and I love you for that! 😉

Having said that I have to apologize to the before mentioned people. Having been that stressed, I somehow arrived at a point where I lost my normally diplomatic way of communicating. I know that I may have given you the feeling to be condescending (which I never intended to be) or was very dominant (which I certainly was) when I saw the necessity to get stuff done. I already told you that I am very very sorry about that but I wanted to take this opportunity again to say that I know that my behavior was not always appropriate and that there’s no excuse for that. Still I am thankful and really happy to have you all as friends and am always open to constructive criticism and a kick in the ass when necessary 😉

With that, I look forward to further work together with all of you – hopefully under less stressed circumstances 🙂

Have a great week and enjoy!


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