The Wunderbar Together PopUp Tour

German business plays an important role in the United States, not just by contributing to economic growth and exports but by creating jobs and teaching vocational skills. The PopUp Tour of “Wunderbar together” was a unique opportunity to highlight the contributions of German companies to the economy and society in the United States.

The Wunderbar Together PopUp Tour was one of the lighthouse projects of the Year of German-American Friendship in the United States: Four cities, more than 100 partners from business, culture, education, and politics, more than 200 speakers and artists on the stage, and more than 34,000 visitors.

After the kick-off in Chicago in spring 2019, the PopUp Tour travelled via Atlanta to St. Louis and finally to Portland. Its program focused on topics surrounding sustainability, the future of mobility, digitalisation and Industry 4.0, as well as the future of work.

German companies were able to illustrate their contribution to American society as employers, vocational trainers, and drivers of research and development. The PopUp Tour showed: whether as business partners, in research co-operations or in education – U.S. Americans and Germans work together successfully on a day-to-day basis.

Chicago – PopUp Tour and Germany Week

In early May 2019, the PopUp Tour joined the Germany Week, organized by the German American Chamber of Commerce, to celebrate all aspects of German-American friendship in Chicago.

Illinois and Germany have strong economic ties. Germany is one of Illinois' top 5 partners in merchandise trade, and German companies provide more than 40,400 jobs in Illinois.

During the ten-day event, more than 23,000 visitors experienced German art, culture, science, and business. With discussion panels, science slams, concerts, edutainment, interactive pop-up elements and more, an interactive program was available for all age groups. German Ambassador Emily Haber opened the Chicago Work Awesome Conference with a keynote speech. Afterwards Philipp Steinberg, Head of the Economic Policy Department, BMWi, took part in a panel discussion on the future of work.

Atlanta – American Business Center in the South

In September 2019, the PopUp Tour traveled to Atlanta. Atlanta is the central transportation hub in the United States and is considered the economic center of the region. In addition, the American headquarters of many German companies are located here. Altogether, they provide 25,000 jobs in Georgia.

Over the course of the three-day program, over 4,000 visitors experienced a modern image of Germany through more than 30 engaging events. A special highlight was the reception given by the Consul General in Atlanta, Heike Fuller, on occasion of the Day of German Unity. As a partner of the PopUp Tour, the German American Chamber of Commerce in Atlanta organized a “Skills Day” and celebrated the graduation of its vocational trainees. Table soccer, music and circus Mojo provided entertainment. 

St. Louis – Duel of the Scientists at the Science Slam

At the beginning of October 2019, young scientists from Germany and the United States competed against each other during the Science Slam in St. Louis. As the headquarters of the Year of German-American Friendship partners Bayer AG and Merck KGaA, there was no better place to present the latest research in the fields of biotechnology, health, and medicine. 

Portland – The Hub of Innovation on the Columbia River

In Portland, the PopUp Tour celebrated its conclusion with impressive political support from Consul General Hans-Ulrich Südbeck, Honorary Consul Blake Peters, Representative of the Embassy Ricklef Beutin, Coordinator of Transatlantic Cooperation Peter Beyer (MdB), Ministerial Director Christian Forwick, and BDI President Dieter Kempf.

In cooperation with the re:publica Sequencer Tour, the events in Portland focused on visions of the future: How will we live in the future? How will the future city look like? What are the concepts for future mobility? And how can we make sustainable urban life accessible to everyone? In cross-disciplinary discussions and interactive workshops, the latest findings regarding these questions were discussed. 

An extensive cultural programme of exhibitions, concerts, and film screenings, as well as German cuisine, rounded off the programme.