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Programme of events

As part of the "Zurich – Insights from the Outside" project, Zurich Urban Development organised various events that dealt with the external perception of the city of Zurich. Different topics were highlighted. With the closing event on 15 March 2021, the project came to an end.

15 March 2021: Zurich's Voice in Bern – Cities as Actors in the National Political Arena

On Monday, March 15, 2021, from 7 to 8:30 p.m., the closing event of the project "City of the Future – Insights from the Outside" took place as a livestream via YouTube. On the podium, Corine Mauch, Mayor of Zurich, Thomas Scheitlin, former Mayor of St. Gallen, Alfred Heer, National Councillor, and Prof. David Kaufmann, Professor of Spatial Development and Urban Policy ETH Zurich, discussed the "Voices of the Cities in Bern". The focus was on the question of the possibilities that a city like Zurich has to exert influence on the national policy agenda in cooperation with other actors. What significance do cities have for policy-making regionally, nationally and internationally? Which positioning strategies are suitable for a city like Zurich to contribute its knowledge, experience and specific concerns to the political discourse?

Click here for the YouTube recording.

March 23, 2020: Where are you from Zurich?

The originally planned second event in Zurich in March 2020 wanted to look inwards and explore the question of when the city's residents feel like Zurich residents – and what that means for them. How do they identify with Zurich when they move around the city, and how do they identify outside the city limits? And how are they perceived by others? Of particular interest was what the so-called "anti-Züri reflex" is all about. Appearances by different personalities who live and work in Zurich, but have different backgrounds and pursue activities in journalism, politics, civil society and culture were planned. In addition, we wanted to discuss with the audience as part of a speed dating. Due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and related measures, the event had to be cancelled. In the spirit of "Stay at home", we asked the invited panel guests to make a statement on the topic as a text or video instead.

«Wo bist du ZürcherIn?» with spoken word artist Simon Chen

The spoken word artist Simon Chen has the same dialect as our mayor and philosophizes humorously about being Zurich.

Read here why Frerk Froböse, member of the board of the Foreigners' Advisory Council, feels like a Zurich resident and why he particularly appreciates the clichéd qualities of the people of Zurich.

«Wo bist du ZürcherIn?» with Wailea Zülch

Wailea Zülch from "foraus – Forum Außenpolitik" feels at home in Zurich, but also dares to take a critical look at the people of Zurich.

"Where are you from Zurich?" with National Councillor Min Li Marti

National Councillor Min Li Marti explains how Zurich is perceived in the federal city and that large cities need to show even better how the whole of Switzerland can benefit from their experiences.

Anna Miller is a journalist and thinks Zurich has the potential to become a little more relaxed, down-to-earth and accessible.

25 February 2020: We can city – Aarau and Zurich in conversation

The event in Aarau showed that Zurich and Aarau sometimes face the same challenges – despite the difference in size. For example, both cities are growing strongly and similar questions arise when it comes to cross-border transport planning. The event with the city of Aarau "Becoming a city – being a city: self-image and expectations" made it clear that the two cities can learn from each other and that cross-border cooperation will become more important in the future. However, there is still room for manoeuvre in the perception of the metropolitan area of Zurich, and especially when lobbying at higher levels, both cities are fighting for greater influence on topics such as climate change or migration. Increased cooperation could produce better solutions here.

Podium guests: 

  • Hanspeter Hilfiker, Mayor of Aarau
  • Anna Schindler, Director of Urban Development Zurich
  • Reto Fischer, Member of the Buchs Residents' Council
  • Melanie Morgenegg, Head of Department of Culture City of Aarau

Moderation: Sabine Altorfer, cultural editor CH Media

With stage poet and cabaret artist Patti Basler

Venue: Aeschbachhalle 6, Aarau 

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