ETH Zurich

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Group.png ETH Zurich  
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ETH Zürich Logo black.png
HeadquartersZurich, Switzerland
ETH Zurich is ranked among the top universities in the world.

ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich; Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich) is a public research university in the city of Zürich, Switzerland. Founded by the Swiss Federal Government in 1854 with the stated mission to educate engineers and scientists, the school focuses exclusively on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.[1] Like its sister institution EPFL, it is part of the Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology Domain (ETH Domain), part of the Swiss Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research.[2]

As of November 2019, 21 Nobel laureates, 2 Fields Medalists, 2 Pritzker Prize winners, and 1 Turing Award winner have been affiliated with the Institute, including Albert Einstein. Other notable alumni include John von Neumann and Santiago Calatrava[3] It is a founding member of the IDEA League and the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) and a member of the CESAER network.


Polytechnikum in 1865
Main building and surrounding campus.
Main building and surrounding campus.

ETH Zurich was founded on 7 February 1854 by the Swiss Confederation and began giving its first lectures on 16 October 1855 as a polytechnic institute (eidgenössische polytechnische Schule) at various sites throughout the city of Zurich.[4] It was initially composed of six faculties: architecture, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, chemistry, forestry, and an integrated department for the fields of mathematics, natural sciences, literature, and social and political sciences.

It is locally still known as Polytechnikum, or simply as Poly, derived from the original name eidgenössische polytechnische Schule,[5] which translates to "federal polytechnic school".

ETH Zurich is a federal institute (i.e., under direct administration by the Swiss government), whereas the University of Zurich is a cantonal institution. The decision for a new federal university was heavily disputed at the time; the liberals pressed for a "federal university", while the conservative forces wanted all universities to remain under cantonal control, worried that the liberals would gain more political power than they already had.[6] In the beginning, both universities were co-located in the buildings of the University of Zurich.

From 1905 to 1908, under the presidency of Jérôme Franel, the course program of ETH Zurich was restructured to that of a real university and ETH Zurich was granted the right to award doctorates. In 1909 the first doctorates were awarded. In 1911, it was given its current name, Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule. In 1924, another reorganization structured the university in 12 departments. However, it now has 16 departments.

Interior skylights in the main building

ETH Zurich, the EPFL, and four associated research institutes form the "ETH Domain" with the aim of collaborating on scientific projects.[7]


Alumni on Wikispooks

Felix Graf1967SwitzerlandBusinessperson
Media executive
WEF/Young Global Leaders 2007. CEO of the NZZ Media Group since June 2018.
Martina Hirayama1970German
Swiss up-and-coming politician with a Bilderberg wind since 2019
Stephanos Manos20 December 1939GreecePoliticianGreek politician who went to the 1986, 1993 and 2001 Bilderbergs
Dimitrios Papalexopoulos1962GreeceBusinesspersonGreek business leader
Johann Schneider-Ammann18 February 1952SwitzerlandPolitician
Double Bilderberg Swiss President
Klaus Schwab30 March 1938GermanAcademic
Deep state actor
German economist, Bilderberg Steering committee, World Economic Forum Board of Trustees
Hansjörg Wyss19 September 1935US
BillionaireSwiss/US Big Pharma billionaire. His company conducted illegal human experiments. Interested in keeping huge swathes of land free of people. Leading source of dark money to the Democratic Party