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ESMT building view from the front

Completing the transformation

You can make your mark on German history. Read below about the impact of making a donation. Thank you.

From State Council Building to a completed #1 business school in Germany

Of the many factors that make ESMT Berlin a unique and prized location for education, our campus is among the most special. The building that once housed the East German State Council is a masterpiece of postwar architecture.

For too long, some of the most important areas of the former Staatsratsgebäude have remained hidden away, unseen. We are delighted to say that is about to change.

We are now developing the yet untouched part of the building, Wing A, to complete the vision of a world-class business school.

Completing the modernization of the building will allow us to bring together students, faculty, staff, guests from around the world, and from all walks of life to participate in future efforts to improve business and society.

The history of Germany and Europe is intrinsically connected with this incredible building; we would like to involve as many of our friends and alumni as possible, in this once-in-a-generation restoration project. 

Successful launch of the project on May 9, 2023

ESMT Berlin initiated the final phase of the restoration of its campus in the former GDR State Council building. It was announced that the former State Council Chamber on the first floor of the not yet modernized wing has been dedicated today as the President George H.W. Bush Reunification Suite

alumni into the Wing A
people in front of the alumnium relief
2 people watching the Schlossbook
3 people in the sitzungsaal in front of the aluminium relief
people in front of the aluminium relief in the sitzungsaal

Attendees from across the community showed their enthusiasm and generosity for the cause. The keynote speakers shared their motivations for supporting the cause, inspiring many other to support the project

The event was attended by Pierce Bush, grandson of Barbara and George H.W. Bush, Max Angerholzer, CEO of the George & Barbara Bush Foundation, David Knower, member of the ESMT International Advisory Council, and many others

The President George H.W. Bush Reunification Suite will provide a space for teaching and a venue for exclusive events. The the room in which the socialist government once ruled, will soon become a become a place for entrepreneurial education

President Bush played a pivotal role in the reunification of Germany, and it is only fitting that the 41st President’s contribution will be recognized in the heart of Berlin

This is an inspiring initiative that will transform the impressive former Council of State chambers into a space that celebrates German unity and transatlantic cooperation

June 16, 2023 ESMT Annual Alumni Meeting: shaping the history of Berlin together

Last chance to see: behind the scenes of history. At the ESMT Annual Alumni Meeting we invited our alumni to see the former State Council Chamber in its original state, before it undergoes the restoration

Attendees to the May 9 event in the Foyer 1
flyer development distributed at the AAM

Writing the next chapter of the history of our campus can only be achieved with the support of those in our alumni community who understand its value to the school and to the world

ESMT alumni are the heart of our community. Together we can shape this once-in-a-generation project

Partner with us to complete the transformation

Amplifying your impact

Thanks to the generous contribution from the ‘Friends of ESMT’ organization, all donations from alumni and other individual donors for the renovation project, will be matched in full.

If you donate €1, ESMT will receive €2.

Your donation is tax deductible if applicable.

Make a donation

Recognizing your Support

Every donation at every level, will be celebrated as part of the events to mark the project’s completion, and on our website. Each contribution will be invaluable in demonstrating the commitment of the school community to completing this vital work.

If you can make an outstandingly impactful donation of €10,000 and above, we will be delighted to thank you for your generosity by naming you, commensurate with the level of your gift, within the newly renovated space. 

If becoming a supporter at this leading level is of interest to you, please reach out to us for a conversation. We will be delighted to hear from you.


Contact us for more information
Did you know?
millions marks
Building's estimated costs when it was constructed
Firms and craft artists
Worked on the building's unique functional interiors
Square meters
Is the building’s total floor space
Porcelain plates
Were manufactured for the entrance foyer and other areas by Meissen porcelain
state-of-the-art renovated rooms
Will be available once the transformation project is completed

The former State Council Chamber

From past to future and all that is in between

A multi-purpose teaching and events space will sit at the heart of a newly-refurbished wing. he room will preserve the architecture and aesthetic of the building’s history while providing a modern backdrop for education
historical image of the former Sitzungsaal

A representation of The President George H.W. Bush Reunification Suite

The former State Council Chamber - Sitzungssaal der Staatsrats

Vision for the Sitzungssaal der Staatsrats

Past life

One of the most politically significant spaces in the building's portfolio of spaces. The heart of the political business for the East German Government. From this room, the German Democratic Republic was governed by its leaders, including Erich Honecker.


The aluminum relief by Fritz Kühn remains in pristine condition and represents the political goals of GDR: peace, productive agriculture, and industrial progress. Peace and progress will continue to be reflected in the room, which will be preserved, renovated and upgraded to become one of ESMT's most prestigious education, seminar and events spaces.

The President George H.W. Bush Reunification Suite

President Bush played a pivotal role in the reunification of Germany. Thanks to the kind endorsement of the George and Barbara Bush Foundation, the renewed room will preserve the architecture and aesthetic of the building’s history while providing a modern backdrop for learning and the celebration of German unity.

The former Screening Room

From past to future and all that is in between

Visual representation of the future use of the former Kinosaal. The room will include 2 new auditoria
the Screening Room was the place “where films were checked for political content before they were authorized for public showing in cinemas across the country”.

Vision for the Kinosaal : two brand new auditoria to seat 150 people

The former Screening Room - Kinosaal

Vision for the Kinosaal

Former use

In its historical usage, the Screening Room was the place “where films were checked for political content before they were authorized for public showing in cinemas across the country”.


Participation in technical progress and its transfer to the next generations through education.

In 2006, the creation of Auditoria 1 and 2 in the former 'Banketsaal' of the State Council Building demonstrated the successful integration of history and modernity, for the benefit of learning. Now, we envisage creating two new auditoria to renew this success. The central meeting point of their horseshoe seating arrangement will act as representation of the re-unification of Germany.

Future use

The space will preserve the architecture and aesthetics of the building's history while providing a modern setting for education and research. Just as in the past, the former screening room will be a place for an audience to assemble. However, they will do so in the spirit of learning, openness, inclusivity and progress, rather than censorship and authoritarianism.