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UNESCO: United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization




  • © UNESCO/Anthony Lacoudre
  • Berne, the Old city of Berne, medieval town

Switzerland joined UNESCO on January 28, 1949.

The country works particularly closely with UNESCO in education and hosts UNESCO’s International Bureau of Education (IBE). The IBE carries out scientific research in education and serve as a coordinating centre.

Several natural and cultural properties in Switzerland are inscribed on the World Heritage List. They include the Benedictine convent of Saint-Jean-des-Sœurs in Müstair, located in the Grisons valley. It houses extraordinary murals painted circa 800 AD and Romanesque frescoes and stuccoes.

The country contributes to several projects for the safeguarding of world heritage. In 2007, cultural artefacts from the Kabul museum preserved in Switzerland since 1989 were returned to Afghanistan.

Switzerland actively participated in the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). The Swiss government hosted the first phase in December 2003, at which 175 countries adopted the Declaration of Principles and Plan of Action. The final preparatory meeting for the second phase in 2005 was also held in Geneva.

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