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Berlin to go, english edition, 04/2019

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  • Future
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BERLINternational FOR

BERLINternational FOR ALL FREEDOM-FANS Because Berlin is a new service for professionals and companies not able to work freely in their home countries Text: Gabriele Schulte-Kemper Berlin is the city of freedom. In keeping with the idea that “everyone should be able to live as they see fit,” the big city on the Spree offers vast opportunities to achieve one’s goals, rethink things, try out new career paths and break with established conventions. “In Berlin, you can study and work without any political or social constraints. The city’s many open spaces and each individual’s freedom to engage in creativity and spontaneity are not up for debate. Here, people don’t do things because other people do them; they do them because they actually want to. This approach and these values attract tops professionals from all over the world,” notes Burkhard Volbracht, head of the “Talent and International” division at Berlin Partner. Because Berlin is a new service offered by Berlin Partner with the goal of promoting freedom and providing entrepreneurs, freelancers, skilled workers and students who are not able to develop in freedom where they currently live with new headquarters or even a new home in Berlin. “The website bundles the various services Berlin already offers professionals moving to the capital, but in addition we seek out and engage in personal conversation,” explains Volbracht. “We offer an additional personal consultation carried out by so-called ‘welcome pilots,’ and this makes it a very special service.” Indeed, there are already many offers Photos: © Because Berlin Why Berlin “Because here in Berlin you have the opportunity to meet people from all over the world every day.” Tabitha Goodall came to Berlin as a freelancer from Oxford. She values her freedom between traveling and working, and also appreciates the fact social justice runs deeper here than in her home country. 22

designed to attract professionals from abroad to Berlin. “A number of players have launched amazing activities to lure their target groups to Berlin. Our Because Berlin project allows us to link up these existing services, but also to fill in gaps and offer new possibilities. We take the project a couple of steps beyond what is usually the case to date. In other words, we don’t want to welcome these talented professionals after they’ve already landed in Berlin. We want to lower the threshold in advance so that we can get them to pack their bags and make their way to Berlin in the first place,” explains Volbracht. The way it works in concrete terms is the following: individuals and companies from all over the world interested in working in Berlin get in touch with the welcome pilots via Because Berlin. At this point, the initial parameters are clarified with the interested parties in advance. At an individual consultation, the welcome pilots use a toolbox made up of existing building blocks from Berlin‘s welcome and startup services. In addition, the pilots offer help – everything from the search for suitable office space and the application for the required tax ID to the finding of doctors and language schools. “The welcome pilots are re-locators who themselves started from scratch in Berlin and thus have plenty of experience and first-hand tips,” says Volbracht. Berlin’s Economics Senator Ramona Pop is delighted that the project has now entered the implementation phase: “The Because Berlin campaign allows us to actively promote the free and open development of people and their ideas in Berlin. The opportunity to live and shape one‘s own life according to one’s own ideas is being increasingly restricted in many countries. In the process, certain lifestyles and also potential growth and ideas are lost. Because Berlin is an invitation to these individuals, companies, founders and creatives to achieve self-fulfillment and build a new life here in Berlin. I invite everyone to get to know Berlin as an ideal location to live out their individual freedoms and awaken their entrepreneurial spirit in a variety of ways.” The Because Berlin project, which is funded by the Senate Department for Economics, Energy and Enterprises and got underway in the fall of 2019, is already having an impact: “We’re already noticing right away when crises start to have economic consequences in certain countries, for example in Venezuela. We very quickly saw that the number of talents arriving in Berlin increased significantly. We also have a large number of entrepreneurs and startups from Turkey; many of them are present in Berlin with at least one mainstay and they’re eager to conquer new markets from here,” says Vollbracht. Why Berlin “Because here in Berlin people don’t just talk about freedom, it’s already a tangible reality.” Baris Uygur is a journalist from Istanbul. His publishing house “Interdictum” supports international authors who face potential censure as authors in their home countries. 23

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