Grow the Future

A Network of Green Voices

Grow the Future - a network of green voices promotes the next generation of progressive voices by offering exceptional opportunities for international learning and dialogue on urgent policy challenges. It aims to create a network of promising young activists and professionals in Germany who are leading movements and initiatives to tackle the biggest challenges of our time—from fighting climate change, to protecting human rights and open societies, to ensuring a sustainable future for the next generation.

Call for Applications: Building Coalitions for a Green New Deal

We invite candidates with a professional interest in strengthening the alliance between the climate movement and labor organizations to apply for a study tour to the United States. A small group of selected participants will travel to South Bend, Indiana, and Washington, DC, to share expertise and strategies between the US and Germany about strategies, tools, and policies to shape a green and just transition.

The group will meet with policymakers, community leaders, environmental justice advocates, union representatives, and experts from academia and think tanks. The tour will provide opportunities to share experiences and discuss shared challenges and strategies with meeting partners.

Following the study tour, participants will be expected to share their experiences with their local networks in Germany. They will also become part of the Heinrich Böll Stiftung’s Grow the Future network, through which alumni support each other to drive progress on green issues and policies.

Grow the Future promotes the next generation of Green voices by offering exceptional opportunities for international learning and dialogue on Green policy challenges. It aims to create a network of promising young policy makers, professionals and activists in Germany who are leading Green initiatives — to fight climate change, protect human rights and open societies, and ensure a sustainable future for the next generation. The network launched in 2020, when the first cohort traveled to Miami and New Orleans to understand how local communities respond to the challenges of the climate crisis and climate-induced migration. In 2022, the second cohort traveled to Canada and Pittsburgh to learn about smart and sustainable mobility.


We seek candidates who bring together climate and labor to shape a just green transition in Germany in at least one of the following ways:

  • as labor rights advocates/activists
  • as leaders and activists in the climate movement
  • as policy-makers at the local, state, national, or European level
  • as researchers or experts in academia or think tanks
  • as critical observers in the media

Applicants should explain how their work or activism contributes to climate coalition building and articulate how the study tour will advance their efforts. Applicants should be between the ages of 21 and 35.

Inclusion: The Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung believes that a diversity of participants enhances learning. We especially encourage applications from women and members of the LGBTQI+ community, minorities, candidates of disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds, and candidates with disabilities.
Note: We do not require candidates to be German citizens. However, candidates should be primarily based in Germany and demonstrate that they are committed to long-term political engagement in German civil society on these issues.


  • Participate in a study tour to the United States: All applicants must be available to participate in a study tour to the United States from June 21-29/30 (depending on travel arrangements), 2023. Selected participants will be expected to participate in all meetings, share their experiences and be actively engaged during the entire study tour.
  • Come prepared to share your expertise and experience: The program is designed so that we can learn from each other, so be ready to share with your fellows and our meeting partners in the US.
  • Come with an open, curious mind: We wish for all participants to explore coalition building in a new context, ask questions, and look for transferable lessons.
  • Actively engage on social media: While participating in the study tour, participants are encouraged to engage with the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Washington, DC, over Twitter, Instagram, and/or Linkedin. The foundation will publish a profile of each participant on the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Washington, DC website.
  • Actively shape the alumni network: Successful applicants should be open to a longer-term involvement with the Grow the Future alumni network. The network will be designed to support candidates in their activism, and to facilitate an active exchange of ideas on Green policy challenges. There will be an alumni meeting in Berlin, Germany, in November 2023 (dates to be announced, costs covered by the Foundation).
  • Have professional competency in English
  • Adhere to Covid-19 guidelines: Please note that all candidates must be fully vaccinated (including a booster shot) against Covid-19 in order to participate in this study tour. Travel for this study tour is dependent on the public health situation and travel restrictions due to the pandemic. We are closely following government announcements and guidelines. Travel plans might need to be adjusted and the tour could be canceled, including on short notice.


The Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Washington, DC will cover all major costs of the study tour, including flights, transportation, accommodation, and most meals. If relevant, the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Washington, DC will also cover the cost of associated visa fees.


Please read the instructions carefully as we will not consider incomplete applications. Applications should consist of:

  1. Resume: Please use a standard US format. Standard US resumes include contact information but no other personal information such as pictures, date of birth or marital/familial status, and are a maximum of two pages. Please include one reference. Please indicate your age in the cover letter, as the study tour is limited to candidates between the ages of 21 and 35.
  2. Cover letter: Please submit a one-to-two page letter outlining your motivation and qualifications for joining the study tour and becoming part of the Grow the Future alumni network. Describe what you hope to learn from the trip and how you will contribute to the dialogue during the tour and the alumni network. Explain what you can contribute to broaden the climate coalition and shape a just green transition. Please also include a statement confirming that you are fully vaccinated (including a booster) against Covid-19.
  3. Challenge statement: We are curious to better understand your work. Please include a short statement (150-300 words) about the biggest challenge you are facing in your work right now. It does not need to be directly related to the topics of the tour.

The resume, cover letter, and challenge statement must be submitted in English.

Click here to submit your application.

The application deadline is midnight EST on April 10, 2023. We strongly encourage early applications.

For questions and inquiries, please contact Ella Mueller at ella.mueller[at] or Mareike Moraal at mareike.moraal[at]

2022 Study Tour on Smart & Sustainable Mobility

From June 11 - 18, 2022, the 2022 cohort of promising young policy makers, professionals, and activists from different parts of Germany traveled to Toronto, Pittsburgh, and Washington, DC. The delegation met with city administrators and policymakers, the start-up community, experts from academia and think tanks, as well as civil society organizations. The tour provided opportunities to share experiences and discuss shared challenges and strategies on greener and more just transportation systems. Read about it below.