So You Want to Live in Geneva?

What’s it like to live in Geneva? I’ve been spending the past few weeks thinking about, and exploring, living and working in Geneva. Yes, I do have aspirations for another adventure but perhaps this time, doing something meaningful, and by that, I mean meaningful to the world at large, not just myself. Having been in Geneva for the past two weeks, exploring the city and what it might take to make that “meaningful life” happen, I’ve been able to put together a little more intel about how I might be able to do that. Before I left the US, I did as much research as I could about what work was here in the NGO world as well as any large corporations, just to cover all the bases. I concentrated on finding out as much as I could about the UNHCR and UN and also screened all the people who might know people connected to Geneva through my LinkedIn connections – and I can tell you the list of those friends that might be able to help was short. So here’s what I’ve learned about this endeavor – as usual, it’s all about connections – try and make them any way you can. After you’ve exhausted all your personal connections looking for a link to work in Geneva here’s what you might want to check out.Lake Geneva

Internations – a great site for expats worldwide with a list of events, forums, online magazine and expat guide for cities / countries (free and paid usage levels).

Glocals – this site is similar to the site above but is for expats in Switzerland only (free). Bonus -when you sign up as a member you also get on an email list for special deals offered in Switzerland – kind of like Groupon.

Meetup Geneva– don’t forget about meetup to join groups in other cities / countries, great place to network when you’re in town.

Partial list of multinational companies with large offices in Geneva (English speakers only may not be penalized): IBM, Dell, Nestle, Phillip Morris, Logitech, Dupont, Kudelski Security, Expedia, Honeywell, World Economic Forum, American Express, International Olympic Committee (IOC) – located in neighboring Lausanne

UNHCR Employment Listings

UN Employment Listings

CERN Employment Listings

English language information on moving to, living in and working in Geneva

Know It All – “The ultimate English-language guide for the Geneva, Vaud and neighboring France areas” – also has excellent guide book to same for purchase

Expat Exchange – “Your one-stop for English speaking expatriates in Switzerland

Expatica – “Living in Switzerland for expats, by expats” (Also has other pages for other countries, mostly European)

Expat in CH – helping English-language speakers to live, work and travel in Switzerland

Expat Expo – Yearly “Expat Expo” information – these take place in several cities throughout the year in Switzerland

Conversation Exchange Program – Need to learn another language? Improve you knowledge of another language in exchange for your own mother tongue!

And finally, my best advice is to go explore living your dream – if you can – spend a couple weeks actually living in the place you’re contemplating moving. No amount of research on the internet can truly prepare you for the reality of being there. Riding the public transit, meeting the locals and attending events has made me think there just might be a great life here…

Comments, questions? – now it’s your turn 

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