The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, founded in 1958, is the foundation for liberal politics in the Federal Republic of Germany. It promotes freedom in Germany and abroad by supporting political education, political discourse, publications and international exchange.
Karl-Marx-Straße 2, Babelsberg , 14482
Telephone: +49 (331) 70 19-0
Telefax: +49 70 19-188
For a fledging democratic system to succeed, we need citizens who understand the procedures, believe in democratic rules and get personally involved.
The Man Behind the Name
Friedrich Naumann (1860 - 1919) was a German priest, politician, and publisher. In 1894 he started publishing the weekly paper “Die Hilfe” (The Help), which promoted social-liberalism. From 1905 on, the paper employed a young editor named Theodor Heuss. In 1907 Friedrich Naumann became a member of Germany´s parliament.
After World War I, he founded the “Staatsbürgerschule” (Citizens School) in Berlin, making Naumann a pioneer of political education in Germany. “For a fledging democratic system to succeed, we need citizens who understand the procedures, believe in democratic rules and get personally involved”, Naumann believed. In 1918 he became the first chairman of the German Democrat Party (DDP), which he co-founded with Theodor Heuss and others.
As a member of the Weimar National Assembly, Friedrich Naumann was one of the drafters of the Constitution of the Weimar Republic, which aimed to establish a stable democracy in Germany. Friedrich Naumann died three weeks after the Constitution was passed. His weekly paper “Die Hilfe” continued to be published by his student, Theodor Heuss, until the Nazis stopped its publication in 1936.
After World War II, Theodor Heuss became the first chairman of the newly established Free Democrat Party (FDP) in 1948 and a member of the council that drafted the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Germany. A year later, Heuss was elected President of the Federal Republic of Germany. In 1958 a political Foundation with close ties to his party, the FDP, was founded at the residence of Theodor Heuss. He decided to name the Foundation after his mentor: Friedrich Naumann.
The Friedrich Naumann Stiftung (Friedrich Naumann Foundation) added “für die Freiheit” (for Freedom) to its name in 2007. It is since called Friedrich Naumann Stiftung für die Freiheit (Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom).