Europe and the EU

Will post-Merkel Germany change its geopolitical course?
13 Jul 2021 16:00 - 17:30
Source: Angela Merkel during a visit to David Cameron in May 2015. © Number 10, Flickr

Future scenarios for Germany’s European, defence and foreign policies

On September 26, the German Federal elections will take place and after 12 years Chancellor Angela Merkel will step down. Looking ahead at the implications for Europe, the central question is if - and to what extent - a next German government will diverge from Merkel-era approaches to the EU and its role in the world?

A new German government will need to deal with a more competitive geopolitical environment. Assertive autocracies like Russia and China will pose challenges to Germany’s security and economic policies, with implications for the rest of Europe. Amid rekindled transatlantic friendship but facing increased calls for European strategic independence, there are questions over Germany’s new defense posture. And Berlin will also need to steer a course on issues that might challenge the Union’s cohesion, such as the post-pandemic recovery, the future of the Eurozone and tensions over the rule of law.

Germany's course of action depends on the outcome of the elections and a subsequent coalition agreement. Drawing on the insights from key German experts, we will explore possible scenarios of coalitions and what to expect from a new Chancellor.

Please join us for this invitation-only event to anticipate the outcome of the German elections with our panel of experts.


  • Thomas Gutschker, Political Correspondent for EU, NATO and Benelux, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Brussels Bureau
  • Isabell Hoffmann, Senior expert at Bertelsmann Stiftung
  • Nicolai von Ondarza Head of Research Division EU/Europe at SWP Berlin

This discussion will be moderated by René Cuperus, Senior Research Associate at the Clingendael Institute.

This roundtable will take place under the Chatham House Rule.