We work in and on the German prison system and the broader criminal justice system. We believe that a society that is committed to human rights has a special responsibility to make prisons as humane as possible and to ask again and again who is punished with imprisonment in a free and democratic society and whether this is the appropriate response to the societal issues that lead people to prison. We can only do this by directly observing conditions in prisons, by asking questions and by entering into an exchange with the people who are impacted by and responsible for this realm, which largely eludes public awareness.
We develop projects in prisons in which people from inside and outside meet, learn together and from each other, build bridges and establish lasting social relationships. By creating an interface between the university and the prison, we create a space in which prejudices can be overcome, where new teaching and learning cultures can be tested, and transformative, rehabilitative learning is lived out. Our multifaceted projects are united by the principle that through encounter and education we can change the perspectives of all those involved and create new perspectives for the future.