GrenzRaumSee

Eine ethnographische Reise durch die Bodenseeregion

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„Regionenmacher“

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A Survey of Transnational Institutions in the Bodensee Region

The history of transnational cooperation on the Bodensee can be traced back to the middle of the 19th century. However, the Second World War brought the previously existing cooperation to a halt. Then in the 1950s, it was revived to make a collective effort to reduce the pollution of the lake.

This transnational cooperation has moved well beyond just dealing with lake pollution to the construction of a regional platform. The question then is how is the Bodensee constructed as a region – which is divided among four countries – and, above all, who are the driving forces behind this construction? When looking into this question, one always comes across four institutions: the Interreg Program of the EU for cross-border cooperation, the Internationale Bodenseekonferenz (IBK), the Bodenseerat and the Bodensee-Stiftung.

The goal of the Interreg Program is to reduce the potential disadvantages that periphery border regions face by stimulating transnational cooperation. This is accomplished by funding various cross-border projects which help to strengthen the regional economy and to establish formal networks. The IBK also receives funding from Interreg to help implement its numerous cross-border projects, contributing significantly to the construction of the Bodensee region. The Bodenseerat, a forum of business and political actors, deals with environmental, traffic and urban and regional planning problems. It is linked with the IBK, to some extent, by drafting various proposals for potential projects. The Bodenseerat sees itself as a representative of the people and as complementary to the IBK. In contrast to the others, the Bodensee-Stiftung is a non-governmental organization for environmental protection which is mainly active as a motivator, presenter, coordinator and advisor to help establish partnerships for sustainable commercial and industrial development. To achieve their goals, these individual institutions are dependent on the networks among themselves and have made networking part of their self-conception and activities. With personal networks proving to be particularly important, it is ultimately the Regionenmacher, the individual actors who help to get projects implemented and construct the region. Precisely this collective problem solving and the inclusion of actors from various fields make an important contribution to the sustainable development of the Bodensee region.

 

Hannah Kaltarar, Eva-Maria Rost, Gianna Scharnberg & Brent Wood

„Interreg will nicht nur ein Fördergeldverteiler sein. Wir verstehen uns als proaktives Projektmanagement, das Anstöße für grenzüberschreitende Projekte gibt und aktiv etwas tun will, um die Leute an einen Tisch zu bringen.“
Tobias Schneider, Interreg

Die IBK könnte man als Spinne im Netz – im positiven Sinne – bezeichnen. Durch sie finden alle Länder und Kantone zusammen.“
Tobias Schneider, Interreg

„Alles was Leute bedrückt, wird durch den Bodenseerat zum Thema gemacht. Es werden keine Themen ausgeklammert.“
Robert Maus, Bodenseerat

„Die grenzüberschreitende Zusammenarbeit mit politischen Institutionen ist aus unterschiedlichen Gründen nicht immer ganz einfach.“
Patrick Trötschler, Bodensee­stiftung

„Ohne persönliche Netzwerke geht es nicht.“
Tobias Schneider, Interreg

„Man hat eben seine Bezugspersonen, das heißt bestimmte Kanäle, über die man geht, wenn man etwas erreichen will.“
Klaus-Dieter Schnell, Internationale Bodenseekonferenz

 

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Soeben erschienen ist der Projektband „GrenzRaumSee. Eine ethnographische Reise durch die Bodenseeregion.“ mit Unterstützung des Landes Vorarlberg und dem Ministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kunst Baden-Württemberg. Erhältlich für 21 EUR im Buchhandel oder direkt beim Verlag.