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Top Jobs : Hardly a Post for the East

There is frustration in the East. However, it is not only well-known issues such as refugee policy, infra-structurally suspended villages, or unequal wages, but Fundamental: the Perception of many East Germans, in the whole of society is not equal to be, therefore, not fully recognized. A diagnosis, the shares probably the Chancellor. It was "not so surprising, then, that there is in East Germany, frustrations," said Merkel in a recent Interview. You are named as an important reason that East Germans are under-represented in leadership positions.

This presents a serious integration problem. For many people in the new countries the group's identity as an East German, 30 years after the fall of the Berlin wall, is still formative. Under-representation means that role models from their own group, which you can Orient yourself, and the signal that the company is open and it can create any/r to the very top.

New studies are scarce

How big is the exact extent of under-representation, is not known, because more recent studies are scarce. In addition, the results vary, depending on what exactly is defined as a leadership position, and in which areas of society you are investigating.

I consider in the Following the share of native East Germans at the absolute Top Jobs in the field of new countries. The latest by me on this well-known study comes from colleagues at the University of Leipzig. You have studied for the years 2015 and 2016 in the areas of policy (governments), companies (Directors), science (including principals), media (editors-in-chief), justice (judge) and German army (generals). Came out: In the East (without Berlin), the proportion in East Germany is only 23 percent, about 87 percent of the population. In addition, the study notes that there were in comparison to the year 2004 hardly changed. Other, somewhat older, studies show, moreover, that East Germany is still a rare Top-hold positions, if one takes the whole of Germany as a benchmark.

Why are there so few East German functional elites in the new countries? The obvious answer would be: discrimination, Roped! West Germans continue to give Jobs to their peers in order to secure, as a group, their sinecures. Although the research shows that managers (tend to be in the economy) more likely to recruit people who are similar to them in social terms. Whether this applies also, if the people of East have biographies, we don't know, it doesn't seem to be very plausible. The research suggests rather to causes that have little to do with discrimination, but everything to do with demographics.

it All began with the reunification. Because this was organized as an extension of the West German institutional system, were in demand in the new countries experts had to be familiar with the Western institutions. In the result, the East experienced within a short time, a huge replacement of its leadership elites – by the West German. What is crucial is that many of the new, at that time, newcomers to the elites even today, to "the Item", because they were obliged in the early 1990s, when relatively young. In order to meet the huge demand, many West Germans, when they went to the East, the Chance to wait for a career advancement, you would have been in the West for many years. Imagine a 38-year-old West German, who was in Leipzig in 1993, the land court judge or a University Professor, and later to the court President or rector, was promoted. If he had not left his place in the meantime, he would retire, at age 65, in 2020 from the service. Until then, his spot is blocked for the young, no matter how this qualifies.

Pool at East executives downsized

to make matters worse, after the reunification, well over a Million East Germans towards the West are drawn, including mostly younger and well-qualified. This reduces the Pool of future East-leaders in the field of new countries. Although calculations of the Federal office for population research show that the trend in out-migration in 2017, seems to be stopped. In the case of the 18 - to 29-Year-old in the East but still have the potential to the West.

Finally, in the new countries, proportionally less people have a for top positions, required high school education. A comparison of the numbers of Graduates of the Federal States in the current national education report shows. This is true even for those who have made their statements only after the turn – apparently, a late legacy of the low DDR rate of Graduates, and a further reason why there are fewer East Germans in leadership positions.

the situation was Somewhat different in the land policy. Here, the election mechanism leads to the fact that leading politicians are more often replaced. Therefore, the opportunities for born in East Germany are larger. According to the Leipzig study is set in the year 2016, 70 percent of the Ministerial posts, and heads of government, representing their proportion of the population. But also in the case of the secretaries of state, and the second most important positions in the political business, there are changes. Here, the share of East Germans rose from 20 percent in 2004 to just under half of all positions in 2016. Probably the Changes in the often-changing parliamentary secretaries of state, to be occupied by politicians, and not the civil servant state secretaries recruited from the civil service.

integration problems are less emotional

to discuss the Transfer of predominantly younger West German elites after 1990, and the unfavourable demographic development in the East of the important structural causes seem to be why it is so far only a few native Eastern Germany in the top positions have managed. I formulate this conclusion consciously careful. Because the underlying processes are complex. For those Affected they are mostly invisible, and also to identify for the research. An important reason for this is that highly sensitive data is required, which can often not, or only very time-consuming to be collected.

Nevertheless, it should be in the interest of the cohesion of the society, that these causes are fully explored. This also includes the "Institute for social cohesion (IfgZ) can help", currently, and by the German Federal Ministry of education and research established. Because social science research can contribute to the integration problems in the society proper, and not primarily emotionally discussed, even if the feeling of those Concerned, not to be recognized, understandable, and often in frustration. The objective view of science on the Power of social structures helps at least to recognize that a stark change in how the collapse of a whole society casts a long shadow on the future, as it is commonly imagined.

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Chancellor Angela Merkel's frustration understands "rations" in the East


The author is a Professor of sociology at the University of Leipzig.

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