The Swiss tradition of hosting organizations charged with negotiating world affairs goes back more than a century, with the creation of the Red Cross in 1863. Today, Geneva is home to a wide range of diplomatic, scientific and technical organizations. Working side by side, these organizations interact on a daily basis. The Lake Geneva region is the world's leading center of expertise in five main areas:
- Humanitarian affairs, human rights and migration
- Labor, economy, science and telecommunications
- Climate and sustainable development
New York and Geneva are the world's main centers of multilateral diplomacy. The shores of Lake Geneva attract nearly five thousand visits each year from Heads of State and Government and other dignitaries.
For many years, discussions of global issues have been open to actors other than governments, who are the primary stakeholders. Technologies enabling remote participation took a quantum leap during the COVID-19 pandemic, further accelerating this process. In the years to come, everything that connects human beings - peace, knowledge, different techniques and ways of managing natural resources, inter alia - will keep being negotiated. As a Host State, Switzerland offers a neutral and conducive venue for the joint development of solutions to an increasingly complex world.
The Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the UN in Geneva is the Swiss representation in charge of liaising with international organizations. It represents Switzerland as a Member State (e.g. when Switzerland speaks at the United Nations) and as a Host State for international organizations.