Thomas Paulsen is a member of the executive board of Hamburg-based Körber Foundation, one of Germany’s largest philanthropic foundations. Ahead of a major gathering of German foundations in Osnabrück next week, Paulsen tells Charles Keidan why Hamburg is the capital of German philanthropy, why foundations should support infrastructure, and about those machines that produce filter-tipped cigarettes.
You mentioned when we met that Hamburg is the centre of German philanthropy. Why is that?
I think there are two factors. One is that Hamburg is a rich city, with many wealthy families and successful individuals who decide to give something back to society. A recent example is the recently established Joachim Herz Foundation with an endowment of more than 1 billion euros. And the second factor is that authorities in Hamburg are trying to encourage the establishment of new foundations by applying the legal framework pragmatically.