Government and administration

The Berlin state government: Berlin Senatemeets at Berlin's City Hall (Rotes Rathaus)fulfills the duties of the city and state governmentcomprises:1Governing Mayor10SenatorsTwo-stage administrationThe district administrations, self-government of the districts(with subordinate authorities and institutions)authorities:District office and district mayorDistrict Assembly12District administrationSenate administrations as supreme state authorities(with subordinate authorities and institutions)10Central administration

The Berlin state government

Germany's capital, Berlin, is both a city and a federal state (Land). At the state level, the position of Governing Mayor of Berlin corresponds to that of a Minister President of one of the other federal states (Länder). The representatives of the state government are elected by the Berlin House of Representatives. The governing mayor nominates the senators.

The Berlin state government comprises:

  • The governing mayor
  • Ten senators

State Government 2016:

Governing Mayor
Michael Müller (SPD)

Mayor and Senator for Culture and Europe:
Dr. Klaus Lederer (DIE LINKE)

Mayor and Senator for Economics, Energy and Public Enterprises:
Ramona Pop (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen Berlin)

Senator for Education, Youth and Family
Sandra Scheeres (SPD)

Senator for Finance
Dr. Matthias Kollatz-Ahnen (SPD)

Senator for Health, Care and Equality
Dilek Kalayci (SPD)

Senator for the Interior and Sport
Andreas Geisel (SPD)

Senator for Integration, Labor and Social Issues
Elke Breitenbach (DIE LINKE)

Senator for Justice, Consumer Protection and Antidiscrimination
Dr. Dirk Behrendt (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen Berlin)

Senator for Urban Development and Housing:
Sebastian Scheel (DIE LINKE)

Senator for Environment, Transport and Climate Protection:
Regine Günther (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen Berlin)

(Source: Governing Mayor of Berlin, Senate Chancellery, 2018)

Berlin's administration

Berlin's administration is assured at two levels:

  • By the city's central administration and
  • By the district administrations

The central administration

The Senate administrations, each led by a Senator, constitute the highest-level state agencies of the state of Berlin.

The Senate administrations are responsible for

  • Making decisions about basic policy;
  • Planning and supervising the overall development of the city;
  • Overseeing universities and corporations under public law.

Subordinate agencies:

  • Chief of Police (Polizeipräsident),
  • Fire Department,
  • Authorities administering justice.

The district administrations

The administrative reforms of 2001 created the 12 district administrations that exist in Berlin today.

A district administration consists of the Bezirksamt plus those institutions that have no legal jurisdiction (such as district schools).

The district administrations are responsible for:

  • District-level affairs;
  • Carrying out special duties conferred on them.

The Senate maintains oversight over the district administrations.

(Source: Press and Information Office of the State of Berlin (Presse- und Informationsamt des Landes Berlin) 2013)

Berlin is the center of economic and political decision making 

The major constitutional bodies in the Federal Republic of Germany are based in Berlin: the Federal Government (Bundesregierung), the Federal Parliament (Bundestag) and the states´chamber of parliamen (Bundesrat). Every one of the sixteen German states has an official representation in the federal capital of Berlin. Businesses in Berlin have a decisive advantage through their close proximity to policy makers.

Diplomatic representatives from all over the world are also based in Berlin, making the city an important hub for German foreign policy. Many embassies are located in the traditional diplomatic quarter of Tiergarten.

Federal Authorities in Berlin

The major federal authorities of Germany are headquartered in Berlin and numerous other federal agencies maintain offices here.

The federal authorities are administrative agencies of the federal government. The highest executive bodies of Germany are termed Supreme Federal Authorities. These include the Federal Ministries (Bundesministerien), the Office of the Federal President (Bundespräsidialamt), the Federal Chancellery (Bundeskanzleramt) and the Federal Audit Office (Bundesrechnungshof).

Subordinate to these are the Higher Federal Authorities. They must follow the directives of the Supreme Federal Authorities and fulfill those duties for which the Federation has legislative power. Among the Higher Federal Authorities are the:

The other Central Federal Agencies are each subordinate to a Federal Ministry as well. They are responsible for a specific field of activity nationwide. These include the Higher Federal Authorities, the Federal Criminal Police Office (Bundeskriminalamt) and the German Patent and Trademark Office (Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt) .

(Source: Constitution of the Federal Republic of Germany)

Associations and organizations

Berlin is home to the umbrella organizations for German business and industry as well as important economic institutions and alliances. Many other associations and organizations maintain offices in the German capital. The organizations and associations located here are an important component of Berlin's role as a decision making center.

Confederation of German employer organizations
(Bundesvereinigung der deutschen Arbeitgeberverbände - BDA)
Haus der Deutschen Wirtschaft
Breite Strasse 29
10178 Berlin
Mailing Address:
Bundesvereinigung der Deutschen Arbeitgeberverbände
11054 Berlin
+49 30 2033-0

Federation of German Industries
(Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie - BDI)
Breite Strasse 29
10178 Berlin
Mailing Address:
11053 Berlin
+49 30 2028-0

Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry
(Deutscher Industrie- und Handelskammertag - DIHK)
Breite Strasse 29
10178 Berlin
+49 30 20308-0
Fax: +49 30 20308-1000

German Confederation of Skilled Crafts
(Zentralverband des Deutschen Handwerks - ZDH)
Mohrenstrasse 20/21
10117 Berlin
+49 30-206190
Fax: +49 30-20619460