Sustainable investments with the know-how of the BMW Group.
In a world where people and cultures are increasingly connected and, as a result, face new social challenges, it is more important than ever that global companies recognise and embrace their social responsibility. Targeted, sustainable commitment is an integral part of the BMW Group’s identity as a company. Intercultural understanding and education, especially for children and young people, are vital to a healthy society and a competitive economy. That is why we are actively committed at our locations around the world, to improving these factors, serving as a co-initiator and focusing on areas where we can leverage our core expertise to achieve the greatest long-term impact. As well as contributing financial resources, we also share our know-how and provide access to our network. We work closely with strong partners to develop possible solutions for more equal job opportunities, to create open forums for non-formal education and honour, guide and support innovative projects to promote cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue.
The projects presented here provide a brief insight into the BMW Group’s wide and diverse range of social commitment activities.
KEY PERFORMANCE INDICATORS: Social Commitment.
NUMBER OF PEOPLE BENEFITING FROM THE INTERCULTURAL INNOVATION AWARD SINCE 2019.
Target for 2025.
Learn more about our programmes and partners:
Intercultural understanding is part of our DNA: The BMW Group operates 31 production and assembly facilities worldwide and is active in more than 140 countries. Thanks to our partnership with the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), we have the possibility to empower and support social organisations and innovative ideas throughout the world.
Through the Intercultural Innovation Award, established in 2011 with the UN Alliance of Civilizations, the BMW Group has been supporting worldwide grassroots organizations (70% of them led by women) engaged in promoting gender equality and intercultural dialogue.
Particular focus is on:
- Women empowerment
- Access to quality education for marginalized children (girls, the indigenous population,
- Reducing inequalities within and among countries through intercultural dialogue.
In eight years of partnership, 51 grassroots organizations have been empowered, 3.6 million people have benefited and 112 countries have been impacted.
If you want to learn more about the initiative and its impact, please click here.
The LIFE materials encourage the development and dissemination of international, intercultural learning, aimed at overcoming prejudices and helping people perceive foreign cultures and language differences not as a barrier, but as an enrichment. Positive confrontation with other languages and cultures broadens individual horizons and promotes constant reflection on established habits and ways of thinking. Click here for an overview of the LIFE materials available for download.
The LIFE concept was developed under the direction of Petra Hölscher in collaboration with the Bavarian State Institute for School Quality and Educational Research and the BMW Group.
Since 2001, BMW Group plants in Germany – and since 2004 those in the UK – have organized a Girls’ Day aimed to introduce schoolgirls to a wide range of different occupations they may not otherwise consider.
Every year, around 150 girls enjoyed a hand-on experience: using a breadboard to simulate vehicle lighting, creating individualized objects with a 3D printer and programming robots with various sensors.
Accompanied by apprentices at the site, they also gain practical insights into various aspects of everyday working life.
Entrepreneurship is a critical tool for promoting economic growth and job creation, and BMW recognizes the millions of female entrepreneurs who pursue their passion of entrepreneurship and financial independence every day.
Increasing women’s economic empowerment is a key element of BMW’s commitment to gender equality. The BMW Supplier Diversity Conference provides woman-, minority- and veteran-owned businesses with access to business networks and global markets. The event creates opportunities for entrepreneurs to grow their business and drive innovation.
In 2019, more than 2,000 woman-, minority- and veteran-owned businesses participated in the annual BMW Supplier Diversity Conference. If you want to learn more, please click here or see the videos:
Inspiring the next generation of engineers.
Investing in future employees is an important pillar of the BMW Group’s philosophy as a company. The initiatives described below are designed to encourage our future engineers technicians and engineers. It is especially important for MINT students to combine theoretical and practical knowledge to succeed in the world of work.
Through this program carried out by BMW Korea Future Fund, BMW and MINI engineers in Korea share their knowledge and experience with technical upper-school students and serve as mentors to help them develop life goals and career plans.
The one-year program includes meetings with mentors, monthly one-day workshops, basic training at the BMW Group Korea Training Academy, a visit to a car exhibition and even a trip to the BMW Group Headquarters in Germany. As of 2020, over 70 associates supported 234 students as mentors. In total, over 40 students now work as technicians for the BMW Group in Korea.
The BMW Group Thailand Dual Excellence in Education programs provide training for high-vocational students in order to enable them to acquire specialized skills and knowledge in automotive technology and innovation. The BMW Group Manufacturing Thailand plant in Rayong offers programs to train high vocational students in mechatronics and logistics management, whereas the BMW Group Thailand in Bangkok started the BMW Service Apprentice Program to train and develop students to become skilled mechanics in the automotive sector.
The programs enable BMW Group Thailand to develop vocational talent in the automotive industry. They receive both theoretical and hands-on training – in mechatronics and logistics by BMW experts at the BMW Group Manufacturing plant in Rayong, and in mechanics by experts at the BMW authorized dealership. The students receive in-depth training in a wide range of professional capabilities that serve them well in the workplace and throughout their working careers. Furthermore, students learn to enrich their work in our diversified work environment.
Since the start of the program in 2012, nearly 280 students have been enrolled in this program and almost 190 students already finished their studies. Over 60% of graduates now work for BMW Group Thailand – at our nationwide dealerships and manufacturing plant in Rayong. BMW Group Thailand will continue to develop the programs to prepare young graduates for their future.
The BMW Group plants in Landshut, Munich and Regensburg offer primary-school children the chance to learn more about mechanical engineering and sustainable production. At five workshops held throughout the school year, children learn how to work with tools and develop other skills. As a highlight, they build their first car out of wood. The program gives third and fourth-graders practical access to the sciences and awakens their interest in technical professions. Since the start of the project at the Regensburg plant in 2015 until the end of 2019, around 1,400 pupils participated in all three plants.
Since 2017, the BMW Group plant in San Luis Potosì and CONALEP (National College of Technical Education) have provided 600 students per year with quality education supported by BMW associates through regular technical workshops. The school was also equipped with a BMW library including a research area and –in the future – a study and a reading area.
In addition to that, BMW is working with a local NGO on a program aimed at improving communication between students and their parents, thereby reducing the risk of drop-outs. 400 parents benefited from this initiative.
BMW US Manufacturing first announced the Scholars program in 2011. In 2018, it announced an expansion of the number of apprentices in the program to 200 scholars. BMW currently partners with four area technical colleges: Spartanburg Community College, Greenville Technical College, Tri-County Technical College and Piedmont Technical College. In the program, students attend class full-time and work at the BMW plant for 20 – 25 hours per week. BMW pays $1,500 towards the cost of tuition and books, provides healthcare benefits and pays students for their work at BMW.
Since the Scholars program began, there have been nine graduating classes and 296 BMW Scholar graduates. Every scholar has been offered a full-time position at BMW.
In 2008, the Boston Consulting Group GmbH and the Eberhard von Kuenheim Foundation of the BMW AG launched the project JOBLINGE – a joint initiative established by industry, the state and society, offering support to poorly educated and unemployed young people. Within the framework of a six-month programme, the young people are taught crucial career-related skills. Moreover, they can improve their social competences and increase their educational and professional opportunities. They are supported by JOBLINGE colleagues and mentors, i.e. by trained, voluntarily committed staff with the necessary life and work experience. After completing the programme, each JOBLINGE participant is offered either a regular apprenticeship or employment that is suited to them. Since the project was launched, the BMW AG has supported this initiative in many different ways. Since 2009, the BMW Group has already provided 220 JOBLINGE participants with places ranging from traineeships to full employment, with around 60 JOBLINGE participants having completed job training with BMW. A total of 106 BMW employees have supported the JOBLINGE participants as mentors. Many employees have become involved several times.
For many years now, the BMW Group has actively supported young talent through the provision of free vehicles for training facilities at home and abroad.
As a result, trainees, technicians and engineers have the opportunity to acquire, broaden and deepen their knowledge using current models. The vehicles provided are equipped with the most varied drive concepts ranging from the latest petrol or diesel variants to hybrids and all-electric vehicles such as the BMW i3. Furthermore, motorcycles are also provided.
With this commitment, the BMW Group supports vocational training facilities and technical universities to consistently adapt training and research to the latest technological innovations and promotes training in the area of electric mobility.
More than 1,700 vehicles are deployed “in the service of vocational training“ worldwide.
BMW sales partners
In 2007, the BMW Group opened its first plant on the Indian subcontinent, in Chennai. Associates marked the facility's eleventh anniversary by launching an extensive educational initiative.
The BMW Group India's SKILL NEXT>> initiative donated 365 engines and transmissions to students to support active, hands-on learning using cutting-edge technologies.
Cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar and students from the Anna University College of Engineering were invited to launch SKILL NEXT>> by assembling a BMW engine on the production line.
SKILL NEXT>> has reached educational institutes and students in every state and union territory of India.
Using a ‘Train the Trainer’ module, BMW Group India also conducted workshops for institutes in more than 20 cities in the country. Here, BMW Aftersales Master Technicians passed on their knowledge to institute teachers to enable them to use the demonstration units independently.
These skills will open up new doors for a workforce that wants to make a successful career in automotive industry in India. The SKILL NEXT>> initiative will also increase availability of skilled
Contributing to social mobility and inclusion.
We believe that young people need a sound education to be able to make their way in the world. That is why we promote education in mathematics, IT, natural sciences and technology – the so-called MINT subjects – around the world, focusing on countries and regions with limited access to schooling. All children should have the opportunity for a proper education – regardless of where they live and grow up. Our supplementary programmes help children discover the sciences and pave the way for a promising career. The BMW Group programmes support quality education in schools and help boys and girls improve their individual skills:
The project “WORK HERE!“ has existed since 2015 and is a joint initiative launched by the BMW Group, the Federal Employment Agency and local job centres with the aim of assisting young refugees as they enter the German job market.
They learn German, experience daily work routines, discover the basic principles of technology and find friends. The six to eight-month BMW Group entry qualification period prepares young refugees for technical vocational training, for example as a production mechanic.
Participants gain insight into professions requiring technical training and the basics of manufacturing technology, attend further education seminars (e.g. mathematics and German courses), try their hand at vocational college, undergo practical training in vehicle assembly and receive intercultural training.
Since 2015, around 800 persons with a refugee background have participated in the “WORK HERE!“ programme, which is offered at the BMW Group plants in Munich, Dingolfing, Landshut, Leipzig, Regensburg and Berlin.
Entry qualification training has established itself as a valuable contribution to the integration of young refugees.
Since 2017, the BMW Group plant in San Louis Potosi has been supporting the Club de Ninos & Ninas, which provides extracurricular activities for around 230 children and teenagers per year. BMW associates support the programs in their free time. BMW opened a library for the students at the premises. Furthermore, BMW promotes quality education by supporting teachers from the Club to upgrade their expertise through tailor-made trainings in reading skills. The main objective of the initiative is to create a safe place where vulnerable children learn, play and develop social relations within the community.
Colonia Juvenil, on the other hand, provides the teachers with the necessary competences to increase their teaching skills in math, English and IT. In addition, the students can participate in extracurricular workshops dealing with these topics. The BMW Group plant San Luis Potosi provides 22 scholarships and an ongoing training program for the teachers that will improve their skills. BMW associates participate as English mentors and hold Spelling Bee contests that motivate the students to learn a foreign language.
Over 80,000 children from rural areas benefit from BMW JOY Home. The project is geared towards socially-disadvantaged children who are unable to live with their parents working in remote regions. This program widely engages BMW customers, dealers, associates and other warm-hearted people across the nation, and aims to provide left-behind children with equal development opportunities. The donation-based program was upgraded to include the enablement of beneficiaries and launched two all-new programs in 2017 - “Joyful Football” and “Joyful Sports”. As an innovative and sustainable education model, the project provides much-desired physical education and football courses. The aim is to enhance the mental and physical health of the left-behind and migrant children in China.
Since 2017, BMW JOY Home joyful sports games have been held regularly across the nation. They widely engage BMW car owners, dealers and BMW associates.
BMW India Foundation in partnership with Magic Bus Foundation implements a focused skill development program to provide livelihood opportunities to underprivileged youths. The program focuses on professional training and supporting youths at the age of 18-25 to achieve their personal and professional goals of permanent employment or job-based training. This breaks the vicious circle of poor education, low productivity and persistent poverty for such youths, thereby promoting inclusive economic growth and decent jobs for all.
Under this program, we have trained over 7,000 youths in multiple skill development centers in key metropolitan areas - Delhi-NCR, Mumbai-MMR, Chennai and Hyderabad.
The program has been aligned to the objectives of SDG Goals of No Poverty, Quality Education, Gender Equality, and Decent Work and Economic Growth, and is attuned to the ‘Skill India Mission’ of the Government of India.
The social and recreation center located close to the BMW Group plant in Araquari guides and supports children from their first year of primary school through to the third year of high school, on top of their classes at state schools. Around 100 children are taught in morning and afternoon groups. Between breakfast, lunch and dinner, children up to the age of nine receive tutoring in reading and writing, while older children are tutored in math. The 1,220 square-meter site also offers sports, culture and art activities, partly organized by BMW associates.
Together with the “Kick ins Leben“ foundation, the BMW Group supports children and youths living in the vicinity of corporate headquarters and the Munich plant.
The aim of the project is to create an open forum for extracurricular education through which young people are offered equal opportunities for their career start. The forum is designed to potentially address around 500 children and youths each year.
From preschool and preparation for a career start and to university: During a series of workshops, the children and youths are not only shown how to improve their language skills, but also how to strengthen their social and career-related competences in order to be able to exploit their potential to the full extent.
As part of the cooperation, the BMW Group opens its doors to children and young adults, allowing them to experience automobile production at first hand, or to attend mentoring programmes held by BMW employees.
Experiencing mobility and sustainability.
From electromobility to autonomous driving, we are on the verge of the next major transition in the history of mobility. At the BMW Group Junior Campus, children and teenagers learn about traffic, road safety, and sustainability and explore safe, environmentally-friendly solutions for future mobility.
We are actively involved with various projects worldwide in this area:
Since 2015, a Junior Campus, launched in collaboration with the German Technology Museum in Berlin, has been in existence. During school class workshops and family offers for children between the age of 3 and 15 years, participants deal with issues ranging from road safety and electric mobility to encoding and decoding, the contents being conveyed by the museum’s pedagogical team in an exciting and adventurous way.
For example, 12 to 15-year olds learn all about electric drive systems, environmentally friendly production of electricity and networking in urban areas, whilst dealing with the challenges of our time in a playful atmosphere.
Since the opening, more than 70,000 children and youths have participated in programmes dealing with the subjects of mobility, sustainability, natural science and mathematics.
Junior Campus Korea holds workshops for small groups of students on how to make eco-friendly model cars. Additionally, the campus has its own “laboratory”, where students learn basic scientific theories through various experiential learning methods. The Junior Campus, located at the BMW Driving Center, was launched in August 2014 and addresses elementary school pupils.
The Mobile Junior Campus, an 11-ton truck remodeled as a lab-based learning facility, was launched in 2012. It visits rural schools and welfare centers to provide children with the opportunity to learn about scientific fundamentals, the automotive world, and the intersection of the two. Pupils are encouraged to explore their curiosity, thereby fostering their creativity and problem-solving skills as well as increasing their interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) subjects.
By the end of 2019, a total of over 135,000 pupils had taken part in Junior Campus Korea. In 2018 alone, over 18,500 children participated.
By the end of 2019, over 22,089 children had participated in Junior Campus programs in Russia, attending educational classes in the “Experimentanium” museum and mobile lab. In total, the Junior Campus projects covered 55,089 children from 2017 to 2019.
In addition, 8 dealers joined the corporate social initiative and installed designated Junior Campus areas at the dealerships where children can playfully learn about road safety.
Russia continues an ongoing initiative to expand Junior Campus children areas at the dealerships that adhere to common visual standards.
In 2019 Junior Campus participated in 13 social events such as the German week in St. Petersburg, a marathon, the Tennis World Team Championship and many more, including for example the launch of a bicycle-repair workshop.
For over twenty years, BMW Group UK has provided youth with educational programmes. Under the motto “Inspire, Engage & Teach,” the BMW Education programme in England provides young people with a glimpse of what sustainable mobility might look like in the future. From interactive learning and quiz materials to job openings, the programme offers different educational and support options for mobility and vehicle construction.
Children aged 7-11 learn essential road safety knowledge through Safe on the Streets (SoTS), the flagship road safety resource of the BMW Group Education programme. It is an award-winning programme designed to teach pupils valuable road safety lessons, building their road safety knowledge and supporting them as they move towards independent travel.
Intelligent Living (i-Living) is an interactive resource for older students aged 11-16, covering in depth the topics of global development, urban mobility, and sustainable design and mobility. The programme, which likewise includes educational materials for both teachers and students, promotes an understanding of sustainable living and its effects at a local and global scale.
Over 12,000 teachers and students visit the BMW Group UK Education site yearly.
To learn more about the BMW Group UK educational programmes, please click here.
In Japan, BMW Group partners with Miraikan, the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, to provide youth workshops on autonomous vehicles. This program combines the scientific and educational expertise of Miraikan and the technical and practical experiences of the BMW Group.
This workshop gives children aged 8-14 a chance to learn about the role of programming in automated driving. Participants learn how such cars operate, as well as how the vehicles are programmed to stop in front of obstacles, make turns, and follow signals. Furthermore, participants are encouraged to think about the merits as well as the concerns and uncertainties associated with a future world of automated driving.
The number of science museums to which workshop contents and know-how were transferred has been on the increase since 2017, totaling 12 in 2019. From 2017 to 2019, more than 130 workshops were implemented with the participation of approximately around 1,500 children. From 2020, these science museums independently continued the program, and Miraikan also started a shortened program dedicated to its own members.
TEACHING ROAD SAFETY.
Around 1.3 million people worldwide are killed in car accidents every year. It is therefore extremely important to teach children road-safety rules at an early age, so they know how to behave on the roads. The special programmes we have developed for this purpose also educate parents in detail about safety requirements, such as the use of child seats and seat belts. The programmes are designed to address all road users – from drivers to cyclists to pedestrians
BMW Children’s Traffic Safety Education (CTSE) aims to improve children’s and adults’ road safety awareness in an engaging way that is both educational and entertaining. The BMW Children’s Traffic Safety Education programme, established in 2005, is one of the longest-running CSR programme of BMW in China. The development of BMW Children’s Traffic Safety Education in the last 16 years exemplifies BMW’s long-term commitment to the Chinese society.
The road safety program has been raising awareness and calling to action for more responsible on-the-road and in-car safety practices for parents and their children, with strong emphasis on the mandatory use of child car seats for children in vehicles in Malaysia. The program includes a subsidy initiative to ensure child car seats are also accessible to families in the lower income group nationwide.
Childline Foundation, Safe ‘n Sound and Shopee Malaysia
BMW India’s “Be Safe, Be Smart” program reaches out to schools and spreads awareness about road safety in an engaging manner that excite our young audience, while also assessing what they have learned. The program focuses on students in the age group of 5-8 years (Class 1-3) and has two components - “In-Class workshop” covers various aspects of road safety and is followed by an “Experiential Learning”, where students apply road safety techniques in toy cars and on bikes in a simulated environment, experiencing a real traffic situation at the school campus. Through this program, the students receive education on various aspects of traffic rules, choices to be made to avoid breaking traffic rules, measures to keep themselves safe while travelling on public roads, identification of reasons leading to an accident, the role of emergency vehicles and more.
This program is implemented by BMW India Foundation in cooperation with its partner Social Empowerment and Economic Development Society (SEEDS). It has reached over 110 schools across the metropolitan areas of Delhi-NCR and Chennai, covering over 33,000 school students, thereby helping them become responsible road users.
The program has been aligned to the objectives of SDG Goals of Quality Education and Sustainable Cities and Communities and contributes to the Government of India’s National Priority Area of Improving Road Safety.
The BMW Kids Tour is a fun programme for children and their families in cooperation with the Italian BMW Group dealerships, with workshops and info and cultural events covering all aspects of road safety. Since 2011 over 36,000 children, 24,000 families and 300 school classes have been involved.
Covid-19-update: due to the covid-19 pandemic this program is on hold.
Being socially responsible forms an integral part of how many BMW Group employees see themselves. They take societal challenges seriously and act on their own initiative, voluntarily and outside of working hours. They do this in many ways. For example, there are team activities during our ‘Social Days’. Other employees dedicate their time to long-term projects, with some putting their professional skills to use or even developing social business ideas.
In search of a project with which employees could give a little back to the communities in the direct vicinity of dealers and production locations in emerging countries, BMW Group Financial Services consulted W4W (WavesforWater), together with which the Care4Water campaign was developed.
Meanwhile, it has become a global BMW Group CSR project. The aim of this partnership is to provide people with access to clean water. In the process, BMW Group employees are globally committed to supporting specific projects in emerging countries in which BMW operates. 2015 witnessed in Thailand the launch of the pilot project, which later expanded to include further countries such as Mexico, India and Indonesia.
A total of over 9,000 filter systems have been distributed, giving 900,000 people access to clean water. So far, more than 350 BMW Group employees have been involved in the distribution of water filters in the communities in which they live.
For an overview of the initiative, click here.
At the BMW Group,“We love what you do!” applies not only to the services rendered each day by employees throughout the world. Once a year, this motto becomes particularly important to us. Since 2011, the company has bestowed the “BMW Group Award for Social Commitment“ on employees in appreciation of their exemplary voluntary commitment.
Each year, under the patronage of the Human Resources Director, the BMW Group honours employees who demonstrate their social commitment in an outstanding way, thus making a crucial contribution to society. Furthermore, a special prize for particularly committed young employees is awarded by the Doppelfeld Foundation of the former BMW executive board and chairman of the board Volker Doppelfeld. Each award winner receives an earmarked cash prize in the amount of 5,000 Euros for their commitment.
The initiative upgrAID has been in existence since 2018 and is a grassroots movement comprising volunteers who advocate the social commitment of BMW employees and anchoring within the BMW Group. Our long-term aim is to create the cultural and practical preconditions within the BMW Group to provide all employees with the chance and opportunity to use time, money and know-how on meaningful, charitable activities and to develop themselves further in the process. These activities help solve the social and ecological challenges of our time and are geared to the UN sustainability goals.
upgrAID serves as a platform for the collaboration between the company, its employees and non-profit making social and ecological projects, supporting their mutual reinforcement through cooperation, aid and commitment. The platform is open to all volunteers – for the exchange of information, active assistance and ideas for charitable projects.
upgrAID sees itself as an interdepartmental network with interfaces incorporating Sustainability Strategy, Human Resources, Corporate Social Responsibility, the BMW Foundation Herbert Quandt and other divisions involved within and outside the BMW Group.
Contact for interested volunteers, enquiries concerning ongoing projects or further information: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Links to ongoing projects: