Germany-France Wy it could be so different by Steffi&Steffi

Since the short discussion about the differences according to ecological awareness in France and Germany, we both had to think about it. We tried a long time to find an answer.
First we thought that it might be a reason that in Germany the party of the socalled “Bündnis90/Die Grünen” has or perhaps had a larger influence in policy than “Les Verts” in France. They even have been a part of the red-green coalition in the years from 1995 until 2005. Also one of their most famous members “Joschka Fischer” has been the foreign minister of Germany from 1998 until 2005.
But we weren`t really satisfied with only that possible reason. Speaking with some of the other Germans we found out that in someway it is not only because of our political background but also because of the historical and out of that even mentally background.
Germans are known to keep with rules and needing instructions. The best example therefore is surely that every German who has to drive with his car on the French streets is nearly confused about not having exact lines on the ground for helping finding the right direction.
Finally it is perhaps another reason that the Germans are really afraid of doing wrong again. After the World War 2, the Germans always tried to do their best not having or causing bad things again. This also includes the environment.
Because these are only some of our own opinions for being reasons for that difference, we would really like to know what you think about that. Why could be the French different from us for you?
Please tell us your view!

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5 comments on “Germany-France Wy it could be so different by Steffi&Steffi
  1. jeremy says:

    Excellent post Stefanie H! I’m sure with the additional comments of the French people in the group, we will have developed a sound hypothesis for the difference in ‘ecological consciousness’ by the end of the course!

  2. Geraldine says:

    I have just found a interesting report about “sustainable development in France and germany”. You will find it at the following adress : http://www.laum.uni-hannover.de/ilr/projekte/nse/devdurfa.html
    The author explains the differences between those two countries :
    – first, the French government is highly centralised and has a great influence on environmental policies. So it seems to be a more heavy process to make a decision in France than in Germany.
    – it seems also that in Germany, there is a real global and structured planning system. We do not have such a system in France, and I think that it makes things go slower.
    I hope we will find some other intersting answers…See you later!

  3. Eloise says:

    I’ll try to give food for thought on the discussion on the difference between Germany and France about the Environmental issue.
    First as you began to do we have to take into account the “mental background” .Indeed, the religious influence into French mentality seems to have been less rigourous than in Germany. Notions of reponsiblity towards one’s actions, one’s community, one’s environment is not deeply fixed in French behavior. It seems to be the same for the environment. The illustration: the former left-side government with a Protestant Prime Minister ( Lionel Jospin) brought to the fore the importance of Ecology in their achievements. It settled many environment friendly measures .
    More over we can also refer to an historical background which has shaped our present behaviour. France was in the past an imperialist country with many colonies all over the world. As a consequence, the issue of scarcity of the resources wasn’t dramatic at all because France could be supplied by its colony. Such a situation doesn’t help to think of the way to save natural capital. Things have changed, France is no longer so spread as it was in the past, but the mentality doesn’t move very fast.

  4. Jennifer says:

    I personally feel as though a nation’s regard for its ecological consciousness is based on the consideration of a wide range of issues. Every nation has its own unique values and beliefs, which I feel plays a significant role in the importance that is placed on ecological issues. As Stefanie points out in her analysis of the differences between France and Germany, perhaps her country is more obedient towards rules and regulation that have been put in place to preserve the environment because of its history. I feel that the media plays a large role in this as well. Personally, I feel that Canadians do take their roles as “Environmentally Friendly” people quite seriously, which could be the result of the media and certain governement actions. A nation’s degree of ecological consciousness depends on many factors, and particulary on the “mind set” of its people in regards to ecological issues.

  5. jeremy says:

    Very interesting analysis Eloise – particularly your hypothesis regarding the impact of French colonialism.

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