News & Views April 2021

Swiss Banner at LSE, University Challenge, Officers, No. 18, Swiss Room, New Buildings and Down to Earth


The Swiss Banner at the School

Years ago, the Association gave the LSE Students' Union Swiss Society a very large Swiss banner, produced by Hutmacher-Schalch, the oldest flag factory of Switzerland, to be displayed and noticed at the annual Freshers' Fayre at the School. We briefly considered sourcing an alphorn to announce the arrival of the Swiss at the annual Fayres like the royal trumpeters announce the HM The Queen but the otherwise brilliant scheme proved somewhat impractical. We also considered buying a large Swiss cow bell for impromptu "Treicheln" performances on Houghton Street but were told, at the time, that the only loud ringing permitted was from Big Ben, not from Swiss cow bells.

The last positive sighting of the very large Swiss banner at the School was in 2011 when Lukas Linsi and Thomas Maurer, both doctoral students at the time, displayed it behind the Swiss desk at the Freshers' Fayre to promote the ultimate citizenship-for-sale scheme "Become Swiss for a quid":

The banner has been lost ever since. As the last prominent loss of a Swiss banner was at the Battle of Marignano in 1515, ours needs to be recovered at all costs. If you have any information concerning the whereabouts of the Swiss banner shown in the photo or whether the Austrians at the School have indeed surreptitiously captured it, please contact the Secretary General immediately.



LSE in the University Challenge

In the 2019/2020 season of the University Challenge, the long-running BBC show moderated by Jeremy Paxman, the LSE team was bested by an excellent performance of the team from the Courtauld Institute of Art:

No LSE team was fielded for the pandemic 2020/2021 season.

Each year, a Christmas special featuring distinguished alumnae and alumni is aired. LSE alums Jagjit Chadha, Maya Jaggi, Ekow Eshun and Simon Garfield aimed to elevate our alma mater to intellectual pre-eminence in 2018 but lost their semi-finals to Peterhouse, Cambridge. An interesting side note: The LSE relocated to Peterhouse during the Second World War when our Houghton Street buildings were taken over by the Ministry of Economic Warfare.



Officers at Work

Last year, Officers dispatched over 71'000 personalized e-mails to LSE alumnae and alumni in Switzerland in regard to activities, events, benefits and services. 43 mass e-mailings were assembled. The smallest mass mailing was a post-activation message connected to our Benefit No. 30 to 21 alums, the largest mass mailing was the invitation to the first episode of our new live broadcast, the Inside Angle Show, to 2'256 LSE alums. We have started a new photo series showing the Officers at work:



Benefit No. 18: Reassembling Collective Health Insurance

Save money.

Following up on the update in the News & Views of June 2019, we are attempting to negotiate a new collective health insurance coverage for LSE alumnae and alumni in Switzerland with the leading health insurance company, SWICA. At this point of the negotiations, we already know one key aspect: LSE alumnae and alumni, who are already clients of SWICA, will be able to enjoy all the benefits of a collective health insurance scheme while keeping their current insurance policies. All other LSE alumnae and alumni will be eligible to move under the scheme. We expect discounts between 10 to 20 percent on insurance premiums.

The Federal Government has ruled that all collective health insurance schemes must have a minimum number of insured. Negotiations will only proceed if 50 or more LSE alumnae and alumni express interest. If you or your family are interested, add your name today without obligations:



The Swiss Room at the School

In celebration of the 5 Year Jubilee of our Association in 2003 and in support of the worldwide Campaign for LSE, money was raised for a special Jubilee Gift to the School. The fundraising target of GBP 10'000 was surpassed, making it the most successful fundraising project by an European national association of LSE alumnae and alumni to date.

In order to identify our gift, the School named a key public room in the library after us: "The Swiss Alumnae and Alumni Group Study Room":



New School Buildings

The Centre Building

Replacing the East Building (built from 1931 to 1938), Clare Market (built from 1966 to 1968, featuring until 1991 a paternoster lift, a perpetual lift with no doors which moved slowly allowing people to enter or leave at the right moment), The Anchorage (built around 1800) and St. Clement's (converted between 1959 and 1962), the new state-of-the-art, flexible and highly sustainable Centre Building opened in June 2019. See the photos:

... and watch a short film:


The Marshall Building

As the current major building project, the Marshall Building will feature the Grand Hall as a generous, largely unprogrammed, flexible indoor civic space:




LSE people and the School are featured in an episode of the new Netflix show "Down to Earth" moderated by Zac Efron. Check it out:

Copyright © 1998-2023 Swiss LSE Alumni Association. All rights reserved. Disclaimer and Impressum: The Swiss LSE Alumni Association acts only on its own behalf, is in no way authorized, maintained, sponsored, endorsed, or otherwise representative of the London School of Economics and Political Science or the University of London. It is an independent and autonomous national membership association incorporated under Swiss federal law. Its postal address is: The Swiss LSE Alumni Association, CH-3000 Berne. It is represented by its Officers as they are listed in the respective section of this Web site.