Media Appeal for University with English

One of Berlin's universities should switch to English in order to attract the skilled workers Germany so desperately needs, argues Markus Hesselmann, a publicist of Der Tagesspiegel, one of Germany's leading newspapers.
In his article Hesselmann argues that, despite the global hype, Berlin can still be a provincial place. Students from parts of the world traditionally connected with 20th century European colonial powers, still prefer to move to big cities in their own countries, even though life in Berlin today is still much cheaper than in e.g. London.
According to Der Tagesspiegel's author, with its global attractiveness and high living standards, Berlin above everywhere else in Germany is best placed in the fight for the world's brightest brains. It is not enough for Berlin to attract artists and creatives, points out Hesselmann. The city needs technicians and business types if it is going to progress economically.
One obstacle Hesselmann points out to is language. German is not a world language and the incentive worldwide to learn this language is quite small. However, if a fact that English is the modern lingua franca were accepted without any cultural arrogance, it would be a smart next step for Berlin to switch over one of its three large universities strictly to this language. When all lectures and seminars are offered in English, the language barrier could be removed, which would result in attracting to Berlin not only more students, but also more foreign researchers and lecturers.
Hesselmann also points out that an English-speaking university would be a first step toward genuine cultural opening of the city towards other cultures and nationalities.


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