wheelchair basketball team in a game

Social commitment

ECE's commitment

With its civil commitment ECE assumes responsibility in the society and thus aims to contribute to the cities' attractiveness and diversity. ECE provides start-up financing and impetus with project funding. ECE and the affiliated foundations accompany the supported projects in terms of content and contribute their know-how. The handling of donations and sponsoring is regulated in an ECE company guideline.

With regard to ECE's social commitment, special emphasis is placed on sports. Sport hugely influences social interactions: it contributes to the socialization of young people, provides integration and social inclusion. By promoting sports, ECE intends to contribute its share to these social interactions. For this commitment, ECE received the SportMerkur award from Hamburg's Chamber of Commerce.

Exemplary projects sports promotion

Art and culture are sectors of society which have special potential to create vibrant cities and to encourage the public spirit. This is why they are in the focus of ECE's civil commitment, in particular at the headquarters in Hamburg. Since 2004 for example, Alexander Otto has been supporting the art gallery Hamburger Kunsthalle and regularly facilitates the realization of important exhibitions.

ECE promotes university graduates in order to be able to win well trained specialist for the real estate industry also in future. Hence, the real estate industry plays an important role for the responsible design of cities as well as with regard to the economy in general.

In this respect, we support the following colleges and universities:

With its membership in and via a sponsoring of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Europe ECE furthermore stands up for responsible urban and regional planning and supports the training of young talents as well as the qualified further development of real estate managers. ULI is internationally active.

We are member of:

Not only the ECE headquarters but all ECE shopping centers assume social responsibility. This commitment to social involvement is firmly embedded in ECE's set of values. more

The foresighted and sustainable planning of shopping centers also takes into consideration the accessibility issue. Thereby, ECE pursues the goal to keep their centers mostly free of barriers in order to also offer people with limited mobility or handicaps unlimited shopping facilities and experiences. more


Alexander Otto established “Lebendige Stadt” Foundation, a company-funded foundation, in 2000. The foundation aims to support cities and to preserve their attractiveness and diversity. The funded projects focus on the guiding themes light green, space, and the development of inclusive quarters. Besides the funding of projects, the Foundation facilitates the exchange of know-how between cities and municipalities through conferences and competitions.

"Dorit and Alexander Otto Foundation" Logo

In February 2011, Alexander Otto established together with his wife Dorit the “Dorit and Alexander Otto foundation” with the purpose to sponsor, among others, the public health system and public healthcare, of science and research as well as of other social project. The first project supported by the foundation is the outpatient clinic for traditional Chinese medicine in the Mammazentrum Hamburg in the Jerusalem Hospital. It allows women with breast cancer to benefit from the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) therapy methods parallel to Western medicine treatment. Target is in particular the relief of side effects of chemotherapy. Furthermore, the Foundation enabled the modernization of the art gallery Hamburger Kunsthalle with a generous donation. ECE managed the planning and construction of that project.

"Alexander Otto Sports Foundation" Logo

In summer 2006, Alexander Otto set up a further foundation: alongside Otto himself, a number of sports experts and representatives of industry pool their expertise and efforts in the "Alexander Otto Sports Foundation" to underline the status of Hamburg as a sporting city. The mission of the sports foundation is to promote sport, and above all youth sport, in Hamburg in the long term. A well-organised system of mass-participation sports and systematic coaching of potential talent is essential to help young people from Hamburg to become top athletes. The "Alexander Otto Sports Foundation" is making a key contribution towards the achievement of this goal by commissioning the construction of a new ice rink and ball sports arena in the "Altonaer Volkspark" in Hamburg. The arena creates additional training facilities for keen amateur sportsmen and women as well as clubs and professional teams in the field of ice sports and ball sports. It also strengthens the position of Hamburg as a sporting metropolis in the competition with other towns and cities.

"Werner Otto Foundation" Logo

Back in 1969, the founder of ECE, Prof. Dr. h.c. Werner Otto, set up the Werner-Otto-Stiftung foundation, an organisation that endeavours to improve the prospects and treatment of handicapped children.