“In this the seventieth year of the German Basic Law, I am delighted to award the Order of Merit of the state of Baden-Württemberg to 18 people who embody the spirit of that law in their daily work. After all, democracy needs democrats – people who are willing to speak up, take action, and feel called to defend the social fabric. These are the people we want to honour today,” said Governor Kretschmann during the awarding ceremony in Mannheim on 18 May 2019.
Kretschmann also emphasised that the recipients of this year’s Order of Merit had helped to lay a solid foundation for the whole of German society through their tireless engagement in the areas of culture, politics, science, and civil society. Where others might flinch, they looked problems straight in the eye and tackled them head-on.
The official statement on the awarding of the Order of Merit to Ortwin Renn:
“Professor Ortwin Renn is one of Germany’s leading social scientists. His contribution to the transfer of scientific insights into politics, public adminstration and management has been outstanding. Prof. Renn lends a voice to those who have no significant lobby in the public sphere. Indeed, he has laid the foundation for a politics of “being heard” and was a trusted advisor to Baden-Württemberg in the areas of policymaking and science. His brilliant academic track record led to appointments to the Ethics Commission for a Safe Energy Supply and the German Advisory Council on Global Change. Here and elsewhere, Prof. Renn’s work has been driven by a vision of a sustainable and just economic and social order. He has played no small part in setting the course for a successful implementation of the German Energiewende.”
The Order of Merit of the federal state of Baden-Württemberg – known as the “Medal of Merit” until June 2009 – is awarded by the State Governor to honour outstanding services to Baden-Württemberg, in particular in the areas of politics, culture, economics, and civil society. The Order of Merit is generally awarded once a year at a ceremony. It has been awarded to 1,941 people since 1975.