2015 Global Go To Think Tank Ranking: DIE strengthens its position among international policy shapers

Press release, 28 January 2016

Bonn, 28 January 2016. On 27 and 28 January 2016 the annual Global Go To Think Tank Index Report compiled by the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program of the University of Pennsylvania was introduced at several launch events worldwide, e.g. in Washington D.C., Berlin and Kuala Lumpur. As in previous years, the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) scored well in the category Top Think Tanks Worldwide (Non-US). Discounting Germany’s political research foundations, DIE and the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) were the only German institutes for research and policy advice to make the Top 30.

According to the survey, DIE belongs to the four most renowned European development policy think tanks, along with the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) and the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS). Overall it came in at rank 14 in the category Top International Development Think Tanks.

In comparison to previous years DIE was able to improve in most categories. The Institute has been particularly successful in the category Best External Relations / Public Engagement Program, where DIE came in at rank 26 (compared to rank 50 in 2014). DIE is attaching increasing importance to its science communication and knowledge diffusion. This is also reflected by it again being listed in the category Best Use of Social Networks. “As researchers it is also our job to contribute to an informed and open discussion about global challenges”, said Dirk Messner, director of the DIE, on the occasion of the report’s release. “The impact of climate change, achieving a global commitment for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development or how to deal with refugees, displacement and its root causes are issues that get more and more relevant; Not only for politicians but also for societies worldwide. I am happy that on this topic, DIE was able to position itself alongside other major international institutions”, Messner continued. In addition to outreach events aimed at the research community, in 2015 DIE had organised a series of public events such as public film screenings in anticipation of the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris. With its project “Klimalog” DIE has also intensified its online and social media output to promote an open dialogue on climate policy among pertinent actors in politics, academia, civil society and the private sector.

The launch of the 2015 Global Go To Think Tank Index Report marks the ninth annual edition of the report, organized by the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) at the University of Pennsylvania. It aims to acknowledge the important contributions of think tanks worldwide and to gain a better understanding of the role think tanks play in governments and civil societies. TTCSP’s first effort to produce a global ranking of the world’s leading think tanks in 2006 was a response to a series of requests by donors, government officials, journalists, and scholars, who wanted it to identify the leading think tanks in the world. This year a total of 4677 policy makers, journalists, researchers and public and private donors took part in the review.