Monks from Cambodia outside UN

Cultural Diversity: What Makes Geneva Unique

Monks from Cambodia outside the UN

Part of what makes Geneva a unique place to live is the multitude of cultures that you encounter on a daily basis. In fact, in the 2011 Geneva census, over 70 different ethnicities were recorded as living here, and 54% of inhabitants hold at least one, additional foreign passport.

Part of the reason for this diversity is because Geneva is home to the UN headquarters, as well as a number of multi-national corporations. This influx of International corporations, and their workers, means that a whopping 40% of Geneva’s current population are non-Swiss! This array of cultures means that we’re constantly inundated with opportunities to learn about other people and where they come from.

One area of the city where this opportunity is particularly prevalent, is at the UN. We are all aware of the International policy-making that goes on behind closed doors, but outside, on the square at Palais des Nations, can be just as emotive. This week, for example, saw Cambodians campaigning for support against their current Prime Minister, Hun Sen. Buddhist monks, traditional food and ancient chants were yet another reminder of the unique and diverse city we live in!


About the Author

Originally from the UK, I have a legal background. I have been in the Geneva area since 2005 and love the mountains, the lake and the quality of life here. The Winter snow sports are fantastic and the Summer season is full of festivals, outdoor sports, picnics and barbecues. I have met some great people here from all of the world. Geneva is a cosmopolitan city with lots of cultural events and good restaurants and bars and I hope that through Biskotti I can share a few hidden places I have discovered…