Germany in the post-Merkel era

It is beyond dispute that Angela Merkel – Germany's first female head of government and a physicist PhD – has had a major influence on the current political landscape. But what exactly is her legacy? Historian and Germany expert Dr. Hanco Jürgens sheds light on the future of Germany and the international community in the post-Merkel era.


After 16 years, Angela Merkel will step down as Chancellor of the Bundesrepublik Deutschland and say goodbye to German and international politics. On September 26, the center-left SPD won the Bundestag elections after a historically poor outcome for the center-right CDU/CSU.

With Merkel’s departure from politics, Germany is facing a suspenseful time. Who will take over her reigns? What direction will political policy take, and what will this mean for German and European society? For the Netherlands, this 'big neighbor' is one of its most important international partners. Investing in a good relationship is therefore key.

Dr. Hanco Jürgens is a researcher, teacher, and member of staff at the Institute for German Studies at the University of Amsterdam. As a historian, he’s particularly interested in the dynamics of social change. With a grant from the Montesquieu Institute, he has researched the influence of the European integration on the social, economic, constitutional, and political relations in Germany and the Netherlands. Currently, he specializes in Germany’s history since the fall of the Berlin Wall. He gives lectures about Germany and Europe, has published on a wide variety of subjects, and regularly participates in public debate.

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