Annual Report 2021 Program Management Information

SWR’s Multimedia Program Department of Information, Sports, Fantasy, Services and Entertainment includes six main divisions: the Editor-in-Chief of Multimedia, Sports, Services and Entertainment, Fiction and Family, the Main Documentary Division and Program Management. Content is created for television and line radio as well as for ARD’s media library, ARD audio library, and online shows for SWR and ARD in the district.

Clemens Bratzler, Information Director at Südwestrundfunk © SWR / Alexander Kluge


Alexandre Kluge

An important substrate for SWR and ARD

Program management produces and coordinates SWR Fernsehen programming as well as SWR delivery for ARD Mediathek, Das Erste and special interest digital channels 3sat, KiKA, Arte, Phoenix, ARD-alpha, tagesschau24 and ONE. As ARD’s second largest broadcaster, SWR recognizes about every fifth program within ARD’s scope. These include “crime scenes” in SWR. Management is also responsible for “Do you understand the fun?” , “ARD-Buffet”, “Report Mainz”, “Weltspiegel” and “Plusminus” versions, in the case of special events also for the “points of contact” in the first. The program management is also responsible for sports broadcasts and several feature and documentary productions. Clemens Bratzler represents SWR at the ARD Video Software Conference. In 2021, Clemens Bratzler, along with Ank Mae (Cultural Program Director at SWR), took over the management of the ARD format “Young Offers,” which was founded in 2020. The format promotes and develops formats across genres for people aged 25 to 39.

2021: The year of great challenges

The coronavirus pandemic has been one of the really big challenges in its second year. SWR has presented five editions of “ARD extra: the case of corona”, including an impressive report on the situation in the intensive care unit at the University Hospital Freiburg.

In 2021, the Mainz Report detailed the issue of Corona on almost all issues. Research into fake vaccination cards has attracted particular attention.

W: In 2021, no entertainment was held without the concept of cleanliness, studio productions had to do without an audience, and every feature film or series was shot with strict rules on the set.

During the SWR crime scene shooting

During the shooting of the crime scene SWR “Interrogation”. © SWR / Benoit Linder


Benoit Linder

The flood in the valley of Ahar

While Corona gradually lost at least part of its great terror, a devastating flood disaster erupted in mid-July 2021 over the Ahr Valley in the Rhineland-Palatinate and North Rhine-Westphalia. Current editorial department colleagues have reported on the continued use of existing formats. Documentaries and reports as well as the Mainz Report provided the background.
Under the auspices of SWR, ARD organized a day of benefit for flood victims, including an evening fundraising gala for Programs 1 and 3. The campaign raised more than 95 million euros in donations. Dealing with the devastating night of the floods shaped the reports in the months that followed.

Focus on Sports: European Football Championship and Olympic Games

2021 was also the year of major events being rescheduled. Fellow sports editors worked for weeks on all distribution channels for the European Football Championship, Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo. The Olympics, which can be measured by the unusually high number of views, showed that ARD Mediathek is becoming more and more important to users.

Information program management was prominently represented in the European Football Championship. Lennert Brinkhoff reports as a district correspondent for the men’s team of the German Football Association. Radio correspondent Julia Metzner commented on the EM final between Italy and England. When the Italians were victorious, for the first time in the history of German sports reporting, there was a reporter on the radio.

Julia Metzner (Photo: SWR, WDR/Annika Fusswinkel)

Julia Metzner © SWR / WDR / Annika Fusswinkel


WDR / Annika Voswinkel

Another fall update: After moderator Guido Kantz withdrew from the show “Do You Understand the Fun?” , Barbara Schönberger succeeded in enlisting as his successor. This will be the first time a woman will perform on a Saturday evening show on ARD from 2022.

big politics

2021 was an excellent electoral year, including state elections in Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate on 14 March; This was followed by the Bundestag elections in September. In addition to Das Erste’s current reporting on election night, several products have already been created, for both traditional media and digital platforms.

For Das Erste and ARD Mediathek, the documentary formats “Paths to Power – The Year of Decision Making in Germany”, and at the end of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s term in office, was the phrase “Merkel years”. at the end of an era.”

For voters for the first time, an online game “How to decide?” was created. under management responsibility.

The state elections in March were the first intense stress test for the newly created audio news center in Baden-Baden, where, with few exceptions, all SWR radio news (ie whether for Baden-Württemberg or Rhineland-Palatinate) has been broadcast since 2021. It is created and calculated from a source One.

Focus on younger target audiences: digital offerings

The digital development offensive of management, aimed at reaching new target groups on relevant platforms, continued in 2021: on the one hand, with a lot of development work, but also with very concrete implementation.

For example, the sports format “Dein Verein” (“Dein VfB”, “Dein SCF”, “Dein FCK”, “Dein FSV”) provides everything about the major football clubs in the Southwest: “Dein Verein” on YouTube Contemporary Sports reports, well-founded but informal, are far from cliched.

The figure “SOS Großstadtklinik” shows the staff of the Stuttgart Clinic closely, yet full of respect.

SWR Doku’s social media channels on YouTube and Instagram have also developed positively.

The Instagram project @ichbinsophiescholl, which has taken the resistance fighter out of the history books into the here and now, has been great in the digital realm and has attracted a lot of interest. Users have been able to participate in the past 10 months of the life of 21-year-old Sophie (played by Luna Wedler) in real time and up close. Up to 750,000 people participated in the widely acclaimed project.

Great Cinema: Great Productions

SWR regularly participates in so-called film co-productions, both in the fiction and documentary fields.

The feature film “I Am Your Man” by director Maria Schrader was shown in cinemas in July. The comedy tells the story of a woman meeting with a robot. The work received significant awards – including the Silver Bear for actress Maren Eggert for best leading role. At the 2021 German Film Awards, five awards went to “I’m Your Skin”.

In the “Documentary” category, SWR was thrilled to receive an Oscar nomination for co-production “The Mole – A Nursing Home Detective.” This was the fourth Academy Award nomination for a SWR documentary in a row.

Baden-Württemberg State Broadcasting Directorate

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