On June 30st, U.S. Ambassador to the Swiss Confederation Suzan “Suzi” LeVine visited a group of game developers representing the Swiss game industry, and special guests from industry, politics, and education. Among them were many SGDA members eager to meet the charismatic Ambassador. The first item on the agenda was a roundtable discussion about various topics concerning game development in Switzerland: they ranged from questions around the kind of games developed in our country, what it’s like to study game development in Switzerland, the use of game strategies for public outreach, if there are possibilities for future collaborations with the U.S. Embassy, or what networks/economic ties in game development there are between the U.S. and Switzerland.
The Ambassador argued that game development is important “as a playground for innovative ideas and cutting-edge technologies“. Following the roundtable, the guests had the opportunity to get in touch with Suzan LeVine in a very interesting Q&A session. After all, she is no stranger to technology. Before taking up her position as the United States Ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein on June 2, 2014, Suzan LeVine worked at Microsoft Corporation from 2009-2012 as Director of Strategic Partnerships for Student Developers and Director of Communications for Education. LeVine’s early career centered on software and the Internet. From 1993-1998, she worked as a Product Manager for Microsoft where she helped launch the final versions of MS-DOS and Windows 95.
Suzan LeVine was impressed by the meeting with the game developers, which she referred to as “a dynamic group of young entrepreneurs in game design, some of whom have already been very successful internationally” in her remarks for this year’s Independence Day. At the end of the meeting, Matthias Sala from the SGDA handed over a compilation of Swiss games as a present to the Ambassador. It was a fantastic opportunity to foster the ties between the U.S. Embassy and the Swiss game industry, and we hope that many interesting collaborations will spring from this first contact.