20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall


By URBACT, on November 6th, 2009

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berlin1These days Berlin is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Wall with joy, music and culture. As the wall dividing our city was a symbol for the devision of Europe, the opening of  the wall on 9 November 1989 symbolised the peacefull revolutions that swept through central and eastern Europe and ultimetaly led to an extended  European Union with 27 member states.
The social and economic changes that followed German reunification created new opportunities but also saw the loss of many less qualified jobs in industries. Unemployment in Berlin is far above the national average and it is uneven spread in the city. In some neighbourhoods on both sides of the fallen wall, unemployment is very high and educational attainment low. The Berlin Senate Department for Urban Development is implementing a neighbourhood management scheme since 1999 to tackle these disparaties and segragation. In the URBACT network CoNet we learn with other cities in Europe about new approaches to strengthen social cohesion in neighbourhoods.
As Europe looks to Berlin 20 years after the fall of the wall, URBACT enables us to search with other Europeans ways to tear down the invisible barriers within some of our neighbourhoods that still leave people excluded.

Reinhard Fischer
CoNet communication manager

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