Safeguarding the future in the learning metropolis
A Learning Environment Takes Shape
It is particularly important for the Elbe Islands Education Drive to create a range of learning opportunities that can be integrated into the district, while also highlighting education as an important aspect of the area. To this end, on top of creating new buildings that will act as educational institutions by 2013, the aim is also to achieve conceptual and structural change, even for the period after the International Building Exhibition.
The residents of Hamburg's Veddel and Wilhelmsburg districts are young and culturally diverse, but they tend to be poor and are often relatively uneducated. Many young people leave school without a final certificate, and around 17 per cent without gaining a single secondary school qualification. The proportion of high school graduates is well below the Hamburg average. As a result, a large number of children and young people from low-income families that lack an educational background are unable to fulfil their potential.
Since the Wilhelmsburg Future Conference in 2002, there has been a remarkable upsurge in educational opportunities on the Elbe islands. The conference gave rise to the Wilhelmsburg Education Forum, under which various local educational institutions, in particular schools, carry out projects together. These mostly take the form of annual reading, research, and cooking weeks, with hundreds of participants. They also meet regularly for frank discussions in "plenary". In 2005 the Elbe Islands Development Partnership, a three-year project funded by the EU, called for an education-based IBA, thus laying the foundations for the cross-cutting Elbe Islands Education Drive project run by the IBA Hamburg, which has been promoted as part of ongoing urban development work from 2006 to 2013. Specialised agencies and Hamburg-Mitte District Authority have been involved since 2006.
The Elbe Islands Education Drive liaison office is currently being established. There is ample backing for this initiative, as attractive educational institutions act as a key to better social integration and encourage local residents to become involved. In addition, they can and should act as a springboard for the renewal of stigmatised districts. More new places of learning are to be created as part of the Education Drive. Above all, it seeks to spark conceptual and structural change, including for the period after the IBA.
The Elbe Islands Education Drive is centred on the idea of strengthening the community and social situation of local residents through greatly improved educational opportunities. Attractive educational institutions are set to make the Elbe Islands a more appealing place to live, as will the targeted and systematic building of networks between over 100 learning establishments.
Since 2006 the IBA has worked in close cooperation with the Hamburg Ministries for:
- Schools and Vocational Training
- Work, Social Affairs, Families, and Integration
- Economy, Transport, and Innovation
- Urban Development and the Environment
- and the relevant Hamburg district authorities
It has cooperated with these bodies to initiate a process for combining learning activities and implementing them in a targeted way. In addition, it has developed a strategy for developing regional learning facilities and set out a framework concept to describe goals and expected results.