Rotem Weizman (front row, second from right) with other meeting attendees in Berlin

Last year during a networking event of the German-Israeli Future Forum I was fortunate to meet German and Israeli young professionals passionate about sustainability. We decided we want to use this issue as a way to strengthen the ties between Germany and Israel.

A year later, with the kind support of the Jackson Institute, I was able to take part in the second meeting of the new German-Israeli Sustainability Dialogue in Berlin, Germany. The seminar brought together young professionals from the fields of business, government and NGOs to talk about sustainability issues in our countries.

We met with German Parliament member Klaus Mindrup who talked about his work to promote the climate change agenda and how to think about policy and regulation as a tool for green innovation. We also met Prof. Günther Bachmann, chairman of the German Sustainability Council, who provided valuable insights into Germany’s progress in the sustainability field.

Beyond the policy sector we were lucky to meet with transportation innovators such as Clevershuttle, a ride pooling company, and Christian Hochfeld, the executive director of Agora Verkehrswende.

In addition, we learned from Ira Sheffer about his research on the German-Israeli environmental cooperation, had meaningful discussion about leadership with the BMW Foundation and got to engage with different environmental activists and hear from the other participants about their work. Israel and Germany have transformed a painful history into a fruitful cooperation. Yet, there is almost no space for young professionals to truly engage and collaborate with one another.

Jackson has opened a door for me to continue and grow partnerships in Germany through focusing on the topic I’m passionate about. The conference made me think deeply about how peace is sustained and promoted through exciting avenues and how young people can create the platforms to share ideas and build partnerships.