That is why the IT industry uses the familiar system of version numbers to delineate the evolution of software, such as an operating system. When only minor adaptations, adjustments or supplements are required to maintain the system and keep it up to date, the numbers that follow the decimal point go up. However, when substantial changes are required because the environment, e.g. markets or technologies, has changed rapidly, then it becomes necessary to develop a new version that is significantly different from the preceding one. When this happens, a new version number is given in front of the decimal point. Without these larger changes in versions, the products and systems would not be able to function and remain viable under the altered external circumstances.
Our world is changing rapidly. This is why software companies are releasing new versions of their products at ever shorter intervals. Companies and organisations initiate large-scale change processes in order to adapt to changing external circumstances. Entire sectors of society are undergoing radical change: energy, mobility, environmental protection, climate change, demography, social security systems, digitalisation, globalisation, new global political constellations. Everywhere we are facing or in the midst of massive changes.
Is it not then necessary, indeed absolutely imperative, that our political system should also develop in tandem?
With this study, we want to make a contribution to the development of a new version of the parliamentary-representative system of the Federal Republic of Germany. Minor adaptations and supplements which would follow the decimal point do not seem sufficient in view of the current challenges (see Chapter 3). They would not be able to stem the growing divergence between the citizens' aspirations and their lived experience and a political system that is required to provide them with answers and solutions. Indeed, a non-learning, non-adaptive and non-changing political system would serve to foster disruptive crises and political catastrophes such as Brexit or the relapse into populism. In such a situation, inaction is negligence. At the same time, we want to maintain, protect and strengthen the fundamental system of the Federal Republic. We therefore believe that a new version of the political system of the Federal Republic is needed, a higher number in front of the decimal point. To show the scale of this change, we have chosen 3.0. 1.0 is the Federal Republic of Bonn. 2.0 is the Federal Republic of Berlin. 3.0 would be the participatory Federal Republic.