In this interview, Claus Offe and Helmut Anheier examine the state of Eastern Europe 30 years after the fall of communism, explore the relationship between capitalism and democracy, and discuss what the social sciences mean today. They talk about the stresses liberalism is currently experiencing, current political developments in the US and UK, and the current relevance the fields of sociology and economics.
Claus Offe is Professor Emeritus of Political Sociology at the Hertie School. He has held chairs for Political Science and Political Sociology at the Universities of Bielefeld (1975-1989) and Bremen (1989-1995), as well as at the Humboldt-Universität in Berlin (1995-2005). He worked as fellow and visiting professor at, among others, the Institutes for Advanced Study at Stanford and Princeton, the Australian National University, Harvard University, the University of California, Berkeley and The New School in New York. He completed his PhD at the University of Frankfurt and his habilitation at the University of Konstanz. Helmut K Anheier (PhD Yale) is editor-in-chief of Global Perspectives, professor of sociology at the Hertie School, member of the faculty of the Luskin School of Public Affairs, and visiting professor at LSE Ideas. He has published widely in the social sciences with an emphasis in civil society, organization, and governance, and received several national and international awards for his academic achievements. Previously, he was president of the Hertie School, and professor at the Max-Weber-Institute of Sociology at Heidelberg University, where he directed the Center for Social Investment and Innovation. Before embarking on an academic career, he served the United Nations as a social affairs officer.