Culture inspires people and opens up their minds to new possibilities. As a high-tech, research-based company, we therefore promote cultural projects worldwide and are engaged in educational projects – especially since education is key to making culture accessible.
For children and adolescents, playing music together teaches them teamwork and builds their self-confidence. Yet many of them first come into contact with classical music only later in life – or never at all.
How we're helping
Our musical ambassador, the Deutsche Philharmonie Merck, seeks to get children and adolescents excited about classical music and to nurture young talent. With this in mind, the Philharmonie thus held its first ever orchestra workshop in 2010. At this music camp, young musicians practice together with the Philharmonie members, gaining initial experience in a professional orchestra. The event concludes with a joint concert. In both 2013 and 2014, around 50 children and adolescents participated in our annual orchestra workshop. In addition to this, the Deutsche Philharmonie Merck has also given four "cushion concerts" over the past two years, thereby reaching around 800 children.
In certain parts of society, we as a research-based, high-tech company often encounter a growing sense of skepticism toward innovation and science, particularly in industrialized countries.
How we're helping
Literature can inspire creativity, raise critical questions, and lead to innovation. Literature can also address scientific issues, thus furthering a deeper understanding of science and research. Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany therefore grants and promotes four literary prizes worldwide.
For 12 years, we have been sponsoring the Premio Letterario of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in Italy, which recognizes authors who build bridges between literature and science, thereby making them accessible to a wide audience. Building bridges between cultures is the focus of two literary awards that we grant in partnership with the Goethe Institut: the Kakehashi Literature Prize of Merck Ltd. Japan, a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in Japan and the Tagore Award of Merck India, a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in India. Since 1964, we have also been sponsoring the renowned Johann Heinrich Merck Award for Literary Critique and Essay of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, which is presented by the German Academy for Language and Poetry. Through this prize, we are helping build bridges between literature and literary criticism.
Germany is experiencing a shortage of skilled, trained personnel - especially in the areas of mathematics, IT, science, and technology. This is partially due to the fact that too few children and adolescents are taking an interest in science.
How we're helping
With the aim of promoting young scientists, for more than 30 years Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany has been a partner in "Jugend forscht", the largest and most successful young scientist competition in Germany. The company has been hosting this competition in the German Federal State of Hesse since 1996. In addition to "Jugend forscht", for many years we have also been supporting more than 60 schools in the region surrounding Darmstadt and Gernsheim in order to spark students' interest in science. For instance, our company not only provides materials for science classes - we also hold continuing education courses for teachers and offer classes field trips to our headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany. We are furthermore partnering with select schools to give teachers extensive support for science classes.
On top of this, since 2008 Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany has also been running the Junior Laboratory in collaboration with the Technical University of Darmstadt. In more than 200 square meters of space, elementary and high school pupils of all ages can work on their own experiments and discover the world of chemistry, receiving guidance from university staff as well as university chemistry students. In 2014, around 3,500 pupils took advantage of the lab.