The Democracy Award 2004
A jury chaired by Dr. Monika Lindner, then Director General of ORF, and composed of Dr. Brigitte Bierlein, Vice-President of the Constitutional Court, Univ. Prof. Dr. Sonja Puntscher-Riekmann, Vice-Chancellor of Salzburg University and member of the Austrian Academy of Science, Univ. Prof. DDr. Oliver Rathkolb, Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for European History and Public Spheres and scientific director of the Democracy Centre Vienna, and Univ. Prof. emeritus DDr. Manfried Welan, Institute for Sustainable Economic Development of the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna, examined numerous entries.
Criteria for the award were that the candidates had largely contributed, by transporting democratic values including minority rights and gender equality, to the promotion of a more tolerant and autonomous attitude in society as a basis for peaceful coexistence of human beings and institutions in everyday life in a spirit of partnership.
The winner in 2004 was the International Business College Hetzendorf.
As the Headmaster of the school, HR Mag. Dieter Wlcek stated in the course of the award ceremony, the award accorded to his institution by the Board of Trustees of the Foundation and the jury meant a most valuable encouragement to continue to pursue projects for the promotion of democracy, parliamentarianism, the arts and future studies.
He also pointed out that the award afforded his institution an opportunity to demonstrate to the public the outstanding performance of present-day schools, their teaching staff and students, and to make the outside world understand that teaching was no longer a half-day job. He felt that the autonomy granted to schools was an important source of motivation to assume responsibility, strive for joint decisions, and keep a watchful eye on quality. The speaker closed his speech by quoting a Chinese proverb: ”Tell me, I will forget; show me, I may remember, but involve me, I will understand.