Summer interview 2012 – Tatjana Darany, Director of the Geneva Foundation

August 2012


What's going on at the Geneva Foundation this summer?

This summer, I'm afraid, I have work to do for the Foundation on rainy days ...

In July, together with CERN, the Geneva University and the Republic and State of Geneva we are organizing an exceptional meeting with the whole crew of Endeavour, the last Space Shuttle mission, which flew in May 2011. Everyone will probably remember that this mission installed an AMS-02 spectrometer, assembled at CERN, in the International Space Station as part of an international collaboration involving 60 institutions in 16 countries, including the University of Geneva. A year later, the public has an opportunity here in Geneva, at the Lake Geneva Theatre, to hear the astronauts describe this incredible adventure in both words and images. Also at this meeting Professor Samuel Ting, (who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1976), director of this experiment at CERN, will discuss the initial results obtained from data collected by the AMS-2. An evening not to be missed!

On the Geneva Diplomatic Club side, once again the programme of activities doesn't really stop. We'll be celebrating National Day, August 1, with the City of Geneva Administrative Council followed by a panel discussion at the end of August on "Europe, ONU : quelle gouvernance ?" with the former French prime minister Dominique de Villepin. That's one way to start commemorating the 10th anniversary of the entry of Switzerland into the UN! And it doesn't stop there. The first event organized by the Swiss Press Club also celebrates the 20th anniversary of its traditional Fête de la Communication in la Pastorale.

The Swiss Confederation, the United Nations Office at Geneva, the University of Geneva, the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (HEID) and the Geneva Foundation are inviting local people to attend an important public conference with the Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, and the Swiss Foreign Minister, Didier Burkhalter, on September 10th.

And then, in the background, the Geneva Foundation is preparing its big event of the autumn: the Award Ceremony of its 2012 Prize to be held on September 24th in the Victoria Hall.

Finally, there is, with Florence Notter, the launching of the new season of the Geneva International Circle; with Ambassador Wasescha, the implementation of the Geneva Diplomatic Club's programme for the second semester; with the President of the Geneva Foundation, Ivan Pictet, the follow-up of the study on the impact of the international sector, as well as of the many original ideas he has put forward (to better promote the Spiritual Call of Geneva, to create a symbolic meeting place in the Place des Nations, to raise awareness of the Geneva International Circle in the German-speaking part of Switzerland, etc.), not to mention the numerous tasks that we tell ourselves we'll get done when it's quieter ...

Holiday plans?

Oh, not before December!

What do you take the opportunity to do in Geneva during the summer?

Improve my golf handicap, take my motor boat license, read the books piling up on my bedside table: this is the list of things I've promised myself I'll do. For the moment, the summer allows me to work mostly on the Geneva café terraces and to take breaks in the sun by the lake.

Do you have a place you really love, in Geneva or in the surrounding area?

The summer terrace beside the Statue de la Bise after my evening jog along the lake!

How about a summer book recommendation for our readers?

L'âme du monde by Frederic Lenoir. 


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