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Saturday, April 23, 2011


Cevio is the capital of the district of Vallemaggia in the canton of Ticino in Switzerland. On 22 October 2006 Cevio grew by incorporating the villages of Bignasco and Cavergno, previously municipalities in their own right.
As of 2007, Cevio had an unemployment rate of 1.51%. As of 2005, there were 32 people employed in the primary economic sector and about 14 businesses involved in this sector. 148 people were employed in the secondary sector and there were 19 businesses in this sector. 372 people were employed in the tertiary sector, with 66 businesses in this sector.There were 209 residents of the municipality who were employed in some capacity, of which females made up 43.1% of the workforce.
In 2008 the total number of full-time equivalent jobs was 461. The number of jobs in the primary sector was 14, all of which were in agriculture. The number of jobs in the secondary sector was 161, of which 15 or (9.3%) were in manufacturing, 21 or (13.0%) were in mining and 86 (53.4%) were in construction. The number of jobs in the tertiary sector was 286. In the tertiary sector; 28 or 9.8% were in the sale or repair of motor vehicles, 15 or 5.2% were in the movement and storage of goods, 59 or 20.6% were in a hotel or restaurant, 9 or 3.1% were the insurance or financial industry, 10 or 3.5% were technical professionals or scientists, 41 or 14.3% were in education and 96 or 33.6% were in health care.

Vallemaggia (district)

Vallemaggia is a district of the canton of Ticino in Switzerland. It has a population of 5,871 (as of 31 December 2009). The capital of the district is Cevio.
In the district of Vallemaggia there was a total of 1,005 students (as of 2009). The Ticino education system provides up to three years of non-mandatory kindergarten and in the district of Vallemaggia there were 135 children in kindergarten. The primary school program lasts for five years and includes both a standard school and a special school. In the district, 302 students attended the standard primary schools and 7 students attended the special school. In the lower secondary school system, students either attend a two year middle school followed by a two year pre-apprenticeship or they attend a four year program to prepare for higher education. There were 267 students in the two year middle school and 2 in their pre-apprenticeship, while 86 students were in the four year advanced program.

Maggia, Switzerland

Maggia is a municipality in the district of Vallemaggia in the canton of Ticino in Switzerland.
Maggia's municipal borders were created in 2004 when the previous municipalities of Maggia, Moghegno, Aurigeno, Giumaglio, Someo, and Lodano were united. The municipality contains roughly 2,400 inhabitants and its official language is Italian.
There were 369 residents of the municipality who were employed in some capacity, of which females made up 42.0% of the workforce.
In 2008 the total number of full-time equivalent jobs was 440. The number of jobs in the primary sector was 26, all of which were in agriculture. The number of jobs in the secondary sector was 172, of which 50 or (29.1%) were in manufacturing, 52 or (30.2%) were in mining and 71 (41.3%) were in construction. The number of jobs in the tertiary sector was 242. In the tertiary sector; 48 or 19.8% were in the sale or repair of motor vehicles, 12 or 5.0% were in the movement and storage of goods, 43 or 17.8% were in a hotel or restaurant, 11 or 4.5% were the insurance or financial industry, 11 or 4.5% were technical professionals or scientists, 22 or 9.1% were in education and 69 or 28.5% were in health care.

Swiss Federal Council

Swiss Federal Council (German: Schweizerischer Bundesrat; French: Conseil fédéral suisse; Italian: Consiglio federale svizzero; Romansh: Cussegl federal svizzer). The Council's seven members constitute the federal government of Switzerland and serve as the country's head of state. Each of the seven Councillors heads a department of the Swiss federal administration.
The members of the Federal Council are elected for a term of four years by both chambers of the federal parliament sitting together as the Federal Assembly. Each Councillor is elected individually by secret ballot by an absolute majority of votes. A person elected to the Council by the Federal Assembly is considered a Federal Councillor even if he or she declines the election. Accordingly, the five persons who did so and never assumed office are listed in a separate table below. For the same reason, the principal table only records the date of election, and not the date on which the Councillors assumed their office.
Once elected for a four-year-term, Federal Councillors can neither be voted out of office by a motion of no confidence nor can they be impeached. Re-election is possible for an indefinite number of terms. Parliament has decided not to re-elect a sitting Councillor only four times, and only twice (in 2003 and 2007) since the beginning of the 20th century. In practice, therefore, Councillors serve until they decide to resign and retire to private life, usually after three to five terms of office.

Paul Scherrer

Paul Scherrer (3 February 1890 - 25 September 1969) was a Swiss physicist. Born in Herisau, Switzerland, he studied at Göttingen, Germany, before becoming a lecturer there. Later, Scherrer became head of the Department of Physics at ETH Zürich.

In the 1930s, Scherrer began to specialise in nuclear physics, becoming president of the Schweizerischen Studienkommission für Atomenergie in 1946 and taking part in the 1954 founding of CERN.
Beginning in late 1944, Scherrer became close to Moe Berg and, through Berg, gave the United States information about German science and German scientists, especially related to efforts to develop a nuclear weapon.

Paul Scherrer Institute

Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) is a multi-disciplinary research institute which belongs to the Swiss ETH-Komplex covering also the ETH Zurich and EPFL. It was established in 1988 by merging in 1960 established EIR (Eidgenössisches Institut für Reaktorforschung = Federal Institute for Reactor Research) and in 1968 established SIN (Schweizerisches Institut für Nuklearphysik = Swiss Institute for Nuclear Physics).
The PSI is a multi-disciplinary research centre for natural sciences and technology. In national and international collaboration with universities, other research institutes and industry, PSI is active in solid state physics, materials sciences, elementary particle physics, life sciences, nuclear and non-nuclear energy research, and energy-related ecology.
It is the largest Swiss national research institute with about 1,250 (year 2006) members of staff, and is the only one of its kind in Switzerland.
PSI is a User Laboratory and runs several particle accelerators. The 590MeV cyclotron, with its 72MeV companion pre-accelerator, is one of them. As of 2006, it delivers up to 2mA proton beam, which is the world record for such proton cyclotrons. It drives the spallation neutron source complex. The latest accelerator built (in 2001) is the Swiss Light Source (SLS), a synchrotron light source with a 2.4GeV electron storage ring. It is one of the world's best with respect to electron beam brilliance and stability.

Swiss National Science Foundation

Swiss National Science Foundation is a science research support organization mandated by the Swiss Federal Government. The SNSF was established in 1952 as a foundation under private law. Its secretariat is based in Bern.
The SNSF promotes research through evaluating projects and granting funds. Its grants go to research projects mainly by supporting individuals.

Pension fund

Pension fund is any plan, fund, or scheme which provides retirement income.

Pension funds in 2005
Pension funds are important shareholders of listed and private companies. They are especially important to the stock market where large institutional investors dominate. The largest 300 pension funds collectively hold about $6 trillion in assets. In January 2008, The Economist reported that Morgan Stanley estimates that pension funds worldwide hold over US$20 trillion in assets, the largest for any category of investor ahead of mutual funds, insurance companies, currency reserves, sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds, or private equity.
Public vs. private pension funds
A public pension fund is one that is regulated under public sector law while a private pension fund is regulated under private sector law. In certain countries the distinction between public or government pension funds and private pension funds may be difficult to assess.

Federal Statistical Office Switzerland

Federal Statistical Office (FSO) is a Federal authority of the Swiss Confederation. It is the Statistics Office of Switzerland, situated in Neuchâtel and attached to the Federal Department of Home Affairs (FDHA).
The FSO is the national service provider and competence centre for statistical observations in areas of national, social, economic and environmental importance. The FSO is the main producer of statistics in the country and runs the Swiss Statistics data pool. It provides information on all subject areas covered by official statistics.
The FSO is closely linked to the national statistics scene as well as to partners in the worlds of science, business and politics. It works closely with EUROSTAT, the Statistics Office of the European Union, in order to provide information that is also comparable at international level.
The key principles upheld by the FSO throughout its statistical activities are data protection, scientific reliability, impartiality, topicality and service orientation.
The first federal population census took place in March 1850 under the direction of Federal Councillor Stefano Franscini. As well as counting the number of inhabitants, these were also asked about their sex, age, marital status, profession, occupation and religious denomination. Between 1860 and 2000 a census took place every ten years in December. The only exceptions to this 10-year rhythm were the population census of 1888 (brought forward as basis for the revision of the constituency allocations) and the population census of 1941 (delayed due to the mobilisation of the army in May 1940). The census of 2000 was the last to use traditional methods. As of 2010 a fundamental change has been introduced: The population census, in a new format, will be carried out and analysed annually by the FSO. In order to ease the burden on the population, the information is primarily drawn from population registers and supplemented by sample surveys. Starting this year, only a small proportion of the population (about 5%) will be surveyed in writing or by telephone. The first reference day for the new census will be 31 December 2010.

Weather forecasting

Weather forecasting is the application of science and technology to predict the state of the atmosphere for a given location. Human beings have attempted to predict the weather informally for millennia, and formally since the nineteenth century. Weather forecasts are made by collecting quantitative data about the current state of the atmosphere and using scientific understanding of atmospheric processes to project how the atmosphere will evolve.
Once an all-human endeavor based mainly upon changes in barometric pressure, current weather conditions, and sky condition, forecast models are now used to determine future conditions. Human input is still required to pick the best possible forecast model to base the forecast upon, which involves pattern recognition skills, teleconnections, knowledge of model performance, and knowledge of model biases. The chaotic nature of the atmosphere, the massive computational power required to solve the equations that describe the atmosphere, error involved in measuring the initial conditions, and an incomplete understanding of atmospheric processes mean that forecasts become less accurate as the difference in current time and the time for which the forecast is being made (the range of the forecast) increases. The use of ensembles and model consensus help narrow the error and pick the most likely outcome.


MeteoSwiss (German: MeteoSchweiz, French: MétéoSuisse, Italian: MeteoSvizzera), officially the Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology, is an office of the federal administration of Switzerland. It employs 290 people at locations in Zurich, Zurich Airport, Geneva, Locarno and Payerne.
Originally established as the Central Meteorological Institute (MZA), by 1863 it operated 88 weather stations. Its name was changed in 1979 to Swiss Meteorological Institute (SMA). Since 1996, it has been operating as MeteoSwiss. Since 2006, its official name is "Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology".
Meteo Swiss observes the weather around the clock, creating weather forecasts and alerting authorities and population, when strong winds, heavy rainfall, storms or heat waves are forecast. In addition, it provides weather services for the civil, military and private aviation.

Swiss Federal Constitution

Federal Constitution of 18 April 1999 (German: Bundesverfassung der Schweizerischen Eidgenossenschaft; French: Constitution fédérale de la Confédération suisse; Italian: Costituzione federale della Confederazione Svizzera; Romansh: Constituziun federala da la Confederaziun svizra) is the third and current federal constitution of Switzerland. It establishes the Swiss Confederation as a federal republic of 26 cantons (states), contains a catalogue of individual and popular rights (including the right to call for popular referenda on federal laws and constitutional amendments), delineates the responsibilities of the cantons and the Confederation and establishes the federal authorities of government.
The Constitution was adopted by popular vote on 18 April 1999. It replaced the prior federal constitution of 1874, which it was intended to bring up to date without changing it in substance.
Title 2 contains the Constitution's bill of rights. The 1874 constitution contained only a limited number of fundamental rights, and some of them grew less significant as the 20th century wore on, such as the right to a decent burial guaranteed in article 53 of the old constitution. In consequence, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court's extensive case law developed an array of implicit or "unwritten" fundamental rights, drawing upon the case law of the European Court of Human Rights and applying the fundamental rights guaranteed in the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), which Switzerland ratified in 1974.
In the course of the 1999 constitutional revision, the Federal Assembly decided to codify that case law in the form of a comprehensive bill of rights, which is substantially congruent with the rights guaranteed in the ECHR, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Title 2 also covers the essential rules on the acquisition of Swiss citizenship and of the exercise of political rights. Furthermore, it contains a number of not directly enforceable "social goals" which the state shall strive to ensure, including the availability of social security, health care and housing.

Swiss National Library

Swiss National Library is the national library of Switzerland. It is part of the Federal Office of Culture. Under the terms of the law which governs it, it is charged with collecting, cataloging and conserving information in all fields and disciplines, and in any medium, connected with Switzerland, as well as with ensuring the widest possible accessibility to and dissemination of such data.
The Swiss National Library is intended to be open to all, and, by the breadth and scope of its collection, it aims to reflect the plurality and diversity of Swiss culture. It is a heritage site of national significance.
The institution has been going through a period of change since 1990. This phase was given the name of RAMSES: Reorganisation for an Automated Management System and Enhanced Services. The principal objective of this project was to modernise the structure and operation of the Library and to increase services to borrowers and users with a view to transforming the Library into an information centre of truly national proportions.
1928 The Swiss Union Catalogue is created.
1931 Move to the Library's present premises at No 15 Hallwylstrasse.
1989 The National Library becomes part of the Federal Office of Culture Affairs.
1991 At the instigation of Friedrich Dürrenmatt, the Swiss Literary Archives are inaugurated.
1992 The Parliament votes the new law on the Swiss National Library.
1993 VTLS library management software is introduced
1994 Access to Helveticat, the automated catalogue, goes public.
1995 Swiss ISSN Centre is opened. The same year the Swiss National Library takes part in the foundation of MEMORIAV, the association for the preservation of the audiovisual heritage of Switzerland.
2000 Inauguration of the Centre Dürrenmatt Neuchâtel.
2001 The Swiss National Library returns to its premises which had been considerably renovated and enlarged.
2003 SwissInfoDesk, am commented list of relevant links about Swiss topics, goes online.
2005 The Swiss National Library launches the project Virtual information about Switzerland, a partnership between libraires. The participating libraries transfer the readers demands to the library which is specialised in the field.
2006 The Swiss National Library is run according to the principles of New Public Management.