ERI Net is Switzerland’s network of science and technology counsellors. Swiss scientific advisers abroad are either employees of the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) or career diplomats from the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). The Confederation sent its first science attaché to Washington D.C. in 1958. Switzerland now has a network of 23 scientific advisers (2013) working in 19 different countries (see map).
The main activities of the entire network include the following:
- monitoring and anticipating developments in science policy in the host region and reporting on such developments in Switzerland
- establishing and maintaining contacts with representatives of the administration, universities, research institutes, and the private sector in the host country
- organising events and multidisciplinary activities in the fields of education, research, technology and culture in order to increase the level of awareness of Switzerland as a science location (using project funding from the SERI)
- stimulating and supporting cooperation projects in the area of university or industry research and development with a special focus on the transfer of technology and the mobility of the researchers.
swissnex is a network with nodes in the world’s most innovative hubs, where the future is being shaped. Together with science and technology counsellors based in Swiss embassies around the world swissnex takes an active role in strengthening Switzerland’s leadership as a world-class location for science, education, and innovation.
swissnexes’ core value lies in their ability to:
- Connect scientists, researchers, entrepreneurs, policy-makers, and thought leaders with inspiring peers and new ideas on either side of the globe
- Facilitate academic programs, global innovation strategies, and knowledge exchange
- Create and present transdisciplinary projects in imaginative ways
- Support internationalization efforts of Swiss academic institutions and companies, with a special focus on R&D based start-ups
- Inform on developments in science, technology, education and innovation policies
swissnex is an initiative of the Swiss Government. Each swissnex promotes public-private ventures. Partners, donors and sponsors provide vital financial support.