The openPetition team
Jörg Mitzlaff studied computer sciences in Berlin and worked as a software developer and IT manager with companies including Infoseek, eBay and idealo. He became acitvely engaged with More Democracy before starting up the openPetition platform in 2010. He is a partner and managing director of the non-profit company openPetition,
Jonas Hantelmann - is software developer at openPetition. He previously trained as an IT specialist for application development and taught ICT at a school in Ghana.
Jessica Seip - Editing, social media and public relations are your hobbies. She studied cultural studies with a focus on social sciences/linguistics and lived in Spain for six months. Before that she was active in the radio landscape for several years.
Mirko Brunner - worked for over 12 years as a software developer in various agencies and implemented software solutions and smartphone apps. Now he is helping to program democracy, where data protection and security are of great concern to him.
Greta Linde - is a student assistant at openPetition and supports the editorial staff in press and public relations. She studies journalism/communications and literature at Freie Universität Berlin and is involved in unipolitics.
Rita Schuhmacher - ist studierte Medienwissenschaftlerin und fachpolitische Redakteurin. Sie engagiert sich unter anderem in der Gleichstellungspolitik und arbeitet bei openPetition als Campaignerin und Redakteurin im Bereich Presse- und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit.
Katrin Appel - ist Praktikantin bei openPetition und unterstützt die Redaktion bei Presse- und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit. Sie studierte Politikwissenschaft und Humangeographie an der Goethe Universität in Frankfurt und schrieb zuletzt ihre Abschlussarbeit über politische Partizipation bei Studierenden.
Ralf Engelmann - is an honorary system administrator for openPetition. He is particularly committed to data protection and data economy. He works full-time at an Internet price comparison portal.
The openPetition mission and how we want to achieve our goals
Make politics simpler - We advise and support petitioners so that each openPetition achieves maximum effect, i.e. reaches the relevant parliament and is processed there.
making policies more visible - We make sure that politicians know what moves citizens in their constituencies. For this purpose we have developed the Wahlkreisradar.
making policies more comprehensible - If a petition reaches the openPetition-quorum, we ask the respective parliament, i.e. all elected representatives of the region, for a statement.
Strengthen the right to petition - We are politically committed to a more effective petitions system. To this end, we talk to politicians and administration in the petitions committees in Germany at federal, state and European level.
Bringing petitions to parliaments across Europe - We want to open up the possibilities of the right of petition online in other European countries and help citizens to address their concerns to their political representatives through online participation.
Modernising parliamentary democracy - We want a modern online right of initiative and demand the right to be consulted and consulted on new, urgent citizens' concerns in parliaments and specialist committees.
Values & principles
We are non-profit.
openPetition was started as a voluntary project by software developper Jörg Mitzlaff in 2010. In 2012 he together with Campact e.V. founded the not- for-profit organisation openPetition gGmbH. It is recognized as a charitable organisation beause we are fostering education, democratic practice and civil society. It is listed in the register of companies of Local Court Berlin-Charlottenburg unter number HRB 144054 B. Our tax-exempt status is confirmed by finance office Finanzamt Berlin für Körperschaften I, most recent confimation dates from 12th of March 2015.
We are independent
- openPetition is politically neutral. The topics on the platform cover the entire democratic political spectrum. openPetition does not adopt the demands and statements of the petitions - this also applies to petition recommendations.
- Our independence form our associates is stipulated in the Articles of Association.
- More than 10,000 committed citizens already support the work of openPetition with a donation or a regular contribution.
- Financial independence is important to us. Therefore, state funds or party donations are out of the question for us. So far we are financially supported by the Campact. e.V. campaign network and in return send out a partner mailing four times a year. Other NGOs and associations can also advertise their petition requests with us in individual cases and against payment. However, we are striving for 100% financing through small donations from our users.