Last week, the Trust Valley celebrated its official launch. This alliance, supported by various public, private and academic actors working in cybersecurity and digital trust in the Lake Geneva region, allows partners to pool resources in the field of digital trust. The key aim is to position and give a global resonance to the Lake Geneva region.
This matters, because the current model no longer meets expectations. There is an urgent need to transform and invent new models of governance and collaboration. Switzerland has a unique opportunity to become an important player in digital trust.
Switzerland is a trusted and reliable partner with world class universities and it benefits from a history of exporting products and services from cutting-edge industries. Becoming a global player in digital trust and security will require a change in mindset and strategic cooperation, as explained by Pierre Maudet during this launch event. The Trust Valley is an important platform to support this change and get this emerging cluster up to speed.
We are excited about this new alliance. The Swiss Digital Initiative aims to bring ethical principles and values into technologies through concrete projects. Our goal can only be reached through collaboration and wide access to knowledge and practical expertise.
Cooperation also needs international support and engagement. Surprisingly, there were only a few mentions of the Geneva International by speakers at the launch. This other cluster needs trust, which today it is lacking. The Graduate Institute assured that together with the University of Lausanne, they will bring the necessary multidisciplinary approach of trust.
We need a better understanding of the necessary conditions for digital trust and trust in general. Digital trust is embedded in the political and social fabric. Providing rules for the digital landscape is necessary but those rules need to address the underlying social issue that erodes trust in the first place.
Trust is about individuals that feel in control and safe. That means technology that works for them, not the other way around. With that in mind, attention should be given to the governance side of technology, at local and global level. A place where Switzerland could be a model and a central actor.
Trust is necessary for our society to function. The current trust deficit is a problem but also an opportunity to invent new models, build an industry and promote good governance.
Trust Valley is paradoxically about taking risks. Switzerland knows how to avoid risk but it’s now time to embrace those opportunities. We are looking forward to working with the Trust Valley network.