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Taking on responsibility together – the CDR Initiative

The aim of the Initiative is to ensure that digital responsibility becomes a normal part of day-to-day business for companies in all sectors. Even more companies should be encouraged to and actively shape the process of digitalisation in a people- and value-oriented way. As technological developments progress, shared learning and exchanges are of ever greater importance.

The Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection () launched the CDR Initiative in May 2018 together with a number of companies. In 2022, the CDR Initiative moved to the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection () due to the change in responsibility for consumer protection. Since January 2023, the Office of the CDR Initiative is operated by the partners ConPolicy - Institute for Consumer Policy and concern.

The CDR Initiative

Digital transformation is permeating all areas of life and is putting established ways of doing things to the test. This offers opportunities, but also harbours risks. Only if politics, business and society are aware of their respective responsibilities will it be possible to shape the process of digitalisation and ensure it serves the best interests of citizens.

For many of us, digitalisation means having the whole world at our fingertips. Convenient, fast and in some cases even environmentally friendly. Yet at the same time, new technical possibilities are also shifting familiar boundaries, especially those between private providers of digital products and services on the one hand and the state and society on the other.

  • What data traces do we leave behind on the web every day, and who has access to them?
  • How does artificial intelligence actually work and when might the use of AI lead to disadvantages for us?
  • What rights do I have as a consumer with regard to private providers who process my data?

There are no easy answers to these and other questions that are becoming increasingly pressing in times of digital transformation. This makes it all the more important to clearly identify the opportunities and risks, and to discuss them. And this is precisely what the CDR Initiative works towards. Together with representatives from politics and business, we develop guidelines and recommendations for action in relation to digital transformation.

Digitalisation centred on people

In times of disruptive technological progress, it is particularly important not to leave consumers behind. On the one hand, this means focussing on consumers when weighing up opportunities and risks. On the other hand, it means ensuring transparency as a basis for trust. With this in mind, the CDR Initiative strives to shape digital change in a transparent and responsible way that serves citizens’ best interests.

Our members

The members of the Initiative all bring a particular commitment to CDR and are constantly developing their engagement in this area. The CDR Initiative, in turn, contributes to these efforts as a learning platform with a high degree of among the member companies.

This enables companies to learn from the shift in perspectives and the particular challenges for specific industries and organisations of different sizes, and to share best practices.

Our objectives - the CDR Code

Concrete objectives build trust. The currently sets out 15 objectives, which are organised into five fields of action:

  • Data handling
  • Education
  • Climate and resource protection
  • Employee involvement
  • Inclusion

A further goal is that of anchoring CDR in the company.

Taking on responsibility together

The Initiative

In 2018, the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection launched the CDR Initiative. Together with our members, we develop recommendations for action for a responsible approach to digital transition.

The CDR Code

Guidelines make responsible action credible. And concrete measures make it visible. The CDR Code contains guiding principles and objectives that the members of the CDR Initiative have committed to.

Interested in becoming a member? Then feel free to get in touch.

© 2024 Office of the CDR Initiative