Lately, I was pointed to an essential matter: what is the legal status of Policyinstitute.net? I had never called into question that I run a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO). However, to make this clear, it will take a few words to show how an organization which is not a German registered association can absolutely be a humanitarian NGO involved in preventing and countering extremism and hate speech, matters of society and politics, as well as capacity building, as is the case with Policyinstitute.net.
I am registered as an independent entrepreneur (‘Soloselbstständiger’ in German) – as a journalist – by the competent financial administration and legal provisions in force. Moreover, Policyinstitute.net, which I founded in 2017, is registered under media law, including an official domain name that is hierarchical, meaning that when you visit its website, you will find links to all the NGO’s projects. To date, they are the following:
Hence, Policyinstitute.net is a business rather than an association, but a non-profit business and NGO with four project websites. I consider all of these to be media ventures. (Similarly to the projects of the NGO, I carry out my other projects – news about Germany in English – as a self-employed journalist, separately from Policyinstitute.net.)
Most importantly, regarding its status as an NGO: the entity Policyinstitute.net is not affiliated to any government nor any institution which might in any way fall under the category of government administration.
What is more, I have been working with a number of individual volunteers up until this day, and am, thus, not the only person involved in the ongoing operations of the NGO.
Since more than a few persons may have tried to classify Policyinstitute.net, I hope this post has clarified things.
Thorsten Koch, MA, PgDip
18 December 2022