In cooperation with Bilanz, Handelszeitung and Le Temps, we are happy as well as proud to announce the Digital Shapers 2017.

The Digital what…?

The Digital Shapers are pioneers in and from Switzerland, who have recognized what digitalization represents and what amazing opportunities it offers. The shapers are people who have visions and realize them and thus shape our future.

Bilanz and digitalswitzerland defined a jury which in turn elected the 100 most important Swiss individuals in all things digital.

The jury consisted of:

  • Nicolas Bürer, Managing Director digitalswitzerland
  • Taïssa Charlier, Founder und Managing Director Y Coaching & Consulting
  • Andrea Danani, Professor SUPSI
  • Fabian Hediger, Gründer und CEO Worldwebforum
  • Christof Klöpper, CEO
  • Marc Kowalsky, stv. Chefredaktor BILANZ
  • Armin Meier, Managing Director Boyden
  • Alain Nicod, Managing Partner VI Partners
  • Susanne Ruoff, CEO Schweizerische Post
  • Lesley Spiegel, Geschäftsleiterin Institut für Designforschung, ZHdK
  • Marc Walder, CEO Ringier

The special supplement, which is available in Bilanz, Handelszeitung and Le Temps, contains a great overview about the history, development, status as well as the future of the digitalization in Switzerland, and of course the people which shape this change. If you are impatient as we are and cannot wait to get a hard copy at the kiosk you can read up about digitalization in Switzerland here.

And who are they?

The shapers have been classified in 10 categories:

The Thought Leaders think ahead of their time and see the big picture: what makes digitization with man and society?

The Creatives use the digitalisation imaginatively: for music or films, for art or games.

The start-ups of the Hopefuls are not older than 30 months, but the people behind them open the throttle: they want to conquer the world with their companies from Switzerland.

The Grand Seigneurs are already established entrepreneurs, have created one or several big and impactful start-ups – and sometimes have even written a bit of technology history.

The Enablers are indispensable to Switzerland’s digital ecosystem: as mentors, sponsors, incubators, teachers, politicians or lawyers, they help with advice and actively back the entrepreneurs up.

The Backers: the seed investors, business angels, incubators and venture capitalists (VC) provide Swiss young entrepreneurs with the necessary financial resources. Without them, nothing goes in the start-up scene.

The Expats are pushing ahead with digitization, but they are not the only ones to succeed: these Swiss are successful abroad.

The Researchers prepare the ground for digitization: as a developer of artificial intelligence, computer architecture or robots.

The Data Acrobats draw from data information. By aggregating, analyzing and extrapolating the bits and bytes they gain new insights – creating innovative applications and entire markets.

The Corporates connect the old to the new world. Digitization does not invent it on the greenfield, but drives it into established companies.

And now what?

digitalswitzerland will organize a workshop with the Digital Shapers. For this workshop all Shapers – the edition of 2016 and 2017 – have been invited. Based on last year’s success – with the creation and publication of the Digital Manifesto for Switzerland – we will define, discuss and sharpen concrete ideas and projects with the Digital Shapers. We fondly hope to recreate such a buzzing atmosphere with a strong output!


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Author Guillaume Gabus, digitalswitzerland

Senior Project Manager

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