Citizens' initiatives

The aim of a citizens' initiative is to influence public opinion and exert political pressure to implement or prevent a particular public measure.

A citizens' initiative is a community founded on the basis of a specific occasion. Its aim is to influence public opinion and thus exert political pressure to implement or prevent a certain public measure (for example, the construction of a bypass).

Participation in a citizens' initiative is one of various ways of participating in citizen participation.

Citizens' initiatives usually form at the municipal level. Their classic fields of activity can be thematically divided into the areas of "housing", "environment" and "culture" (including schools and kindergartens). The demands of the citizens' initiatives are addressed to the municipal councils, district councils or local governments.


A citizens' initiative does not require a specific legal form and therefore does not have to be officially registered.

However, a citizens' initiative can acquire legal capacity by registering it in the register of associations and, as a registered association ("e.V."), itself be the bearer of rights and obligations, for example to lodge and sue.

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