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René Burri

Che Guevara, in Havana in 1963, cigar in the corner of his mouth, haughtily looking past the photographer. Or Picasso, dressed in a striped shirt, a private moment in his studio. Such photographs made Swiss photographer René Burri famous worldwide. He took his first well-known photograph – Winston Churchill in Zurich – at the tender age of 13. After that he hardly ever put his “third eye”, his Leica, down. René Burri died on 20 October aged 81. “Swiss Review” published an article in homage to him in October 2013.

The Museum of Fine Arts Berne accepts inheritance

The Museum of Fine Arts in Berne will accept the artworks bequeathed to it by Cornelius Gurlitt (see also the August 2014 issue of “Swiss Review”). The board of trustees reached this decision on 24 November 2014. Under an agreement with Germany, paintings suspected to have been stolen by the Nazis will initially remain in Germany. The taskforce set up to deal with the Gurlitt case is to further investigate the origin of the stolen art. Germany has also undertaken to bear the costs for the restitution of paintings.

Fight against pay inequality

Women in Switzerland still earn around 19 % less than men in the same position. The Federal Council now aims to tackle salary discrimination with a new set of measures. Employers with at least 50 staff will have to conduct an analysis of pay equality every three years and have this audited by an external body. This means that women will no longer have to provide evidence of discrimination in lawsuits over pay; the company must instead present proof of pay equality.

Prestigious award for Swiss company 

This year, the Leonardo Award, a prestigious educational prize, has been presented to a Swiss company, Bühler AG from Utzwil. It received the accolade for its multimedia teaching system “ClassUnlimited”. One of the reasons for the decision was that the virtual classroom was “exemplary and impressive”. It enables apprentices at Bühler AG to take part in a secondment abroad lasting several months in the final year of their apprenticeship without missing regular lessons with their class in Switzerland. Bühler AG has around 11,000 employees in over 140 countries and trains around 500 apprentices.

Traditions on the UNESCO list

Eight Swiss traditions should be included in the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. This decision was reached by the Federal Council in October. 167 traditions, ranging from the Aargau Bachfischet procession to bilingualism in Biel, are deemed intangible cultural heritage in Switzerland. The following should be included in the UNESCO list, according to the Federal Council: the approach to dealing with the avalanche risk, watchmaking, Swiss graphic design and typo­graphy, the Swiss alpine season, yodelling and the Basel carnival.