Nico Randeraad
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The German phoenix: Berlin 1863

Berlin underwent a period of prodigious growth in the mid-nineteenth century. If there had ever been a moment in the history of the international statistical congress when it could be elevated to a higher plane, then it was 1863, in Berlin. Ernst Engel, the director of the Prussian statistical bureau, was intent on making the Berlin congress a resounding success. Baden was one of the states that took some interest in the resolutions adopted by the international statistical congress. The Baden government was closely involved in the initiatives introduced at the congresses in Vienna in 1857 and Berlin in 1863 with respect to a common system of statistics in Germany. Of all the major themes that would be addressed at the congress, the most innovative theme was the role of statistics in mutual assistance and insurance. Mutual assistance was, in Engel's view, a step towards economic autonomy and independence.

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