Reinventing green politics: On the strategic repositioning of the German green party

Ingolfur Blühdorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Whilst environmental issues, most notably climate change, have recently been more prominent in public debate than at any earlier time, Green parties are confronted with a fundamental challenge: The agenda of 'new politics' that had once been their original project has meanwhile become largely exhausted, and the profound transformation of societal structures, value preferences and party political competition necessitates a comprehensive reinvention of Green politics. Focusing on the German Greens, Bndnis 90/Die Grnen, this article spells out the thesis of the exhaustion of the Green project and investigates how since the end of the Red-Green coalition under Chancellor Schrder the party has tried to forge a new, electorally attractive, programmatic profile. Detailed analysis of its evolving environmental and social policy position and of its relationship to the specific concerns and priorities energising late-modern consumer societies suggests that whilst in principle Germany's new five-party system offers favourable opportunity structures for Bndnis 90/Die Grnen to regain executive power, there is as yet little evidence of a successful reinvention of Green politics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-54
Number of pages19
JournalGerman Politics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2009


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