You can watch the event video here:


Does Germany do it Better?

Award-winning author, commentator, broadcaster and cultural leader John Kampfner will be talking to the BGA about his new book, Why the Germans do it Better (out on 27 August).

John began his journalistic career as a foreign correspondent with the Daily Telegraph, first in East Berlin where he reported on the fall of the Wall and unification of Germany, and then in Moscow at the time of the collapse of Soviet Communism.

He went on to become Chief Political Correspondent at the FT and political commentator for the BBC’s Today programme and Newsnight. As Editor of the New Statesman from 2005 to 2008, he took the magazine to 30-year circulation highs. He was Society of Magazine Editors Current Affairs Editor of the Year in 2006.

John established the Creative Industries Federation to much acclaim in 2014, providing a single voice for the UK’s creative sector. For eight years he was founder Chair of Turner Contemporary, one of the country’s most successful art galleries. He is now Chair of the House of Illustration. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate for his services to the arts by Bath Spa University in 2019.

He now writes weekly for the Times and appears regularly in other newspapers such as the FT, Guardian and New European. He frequently appears on the BBC and Sky. He has made a number of programmes for BBC Radio 4.

Fluent in German and Russian, he regularly speaks at political conferences and cultural festivals around the world.

The discussion will be chaired by RĂŒdiger Görner, Professor of German with Comparative Literature at Queen Mary University of London and Founding Director of the Centre for Anglo-German Cultural Relations. Between 1999 and 2004 he was Director of the Institute of Germanic Studies where he founded the Ingeborg Bachmann Centre for Austrian Literature. He has published studies on Hölderlin’s poetics, the Goethezeit, Austrian literature from Stifter to Thomas Bernhard, on Rainer Maria Rilke and Thomas Mann and his notion of finality in culture as well as studies on literary aesthetics.

RĂŒdiger is a Visiting Fellow of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and held Visiting Professorships at the Universities of Mainz, Hanover, Heidelberg, Vienna and Salzburg. He is a member of various advisory boards of cultural institutions, publishing houses and academic journals. As a literary critic he writes for some of the leading journals in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, including Die Zeit, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Die Presse and Neue ZĂŒrcher Zeitung.

In 2017 he received the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (Bundesverdienstkreuz) in recognition of his achievements in developing Anglo-German Relations.

There will be an opportunity to ask questions of the speakers after the discussion.

Watch the event video below: