In 2015, the State of Valais celebrates the 200th anniversary of its entry into the Swiss Confederation. To celebrate this bicentenary, the State of Valais has launched a call for ideas to which the Idiap Research Institute, together with its partners, has responded by submitting the "Valais*Wallis Digital" project. In March 2013, this project was selected by the State government as one of the 13 "Star Projects".
"Valais*Wallis Digital" is now fully operational and active during the whole year of 2015, although its outcome should feed research and multiple initiatives over many years to come, while also directly benefiting to the society at large.
The Idiap Research Institute is among the most active independent research institutions in information technology. It is based in Martigny (Valais/Switzerland) since its foundation in 1991 by the Town of Martigny, the State of Valais, EPFL (Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne), the University of Geneva and Swisscom. Idiap's budget, which amounts to more than 10 million Swiss francs, is 60% financed by research projects awarded following competitive processes, and 40% by public funds. There are approximately 100 staff members in residence at Idiap, including senior researchers (principal investigators), researchers, post-doctoral fellows, PhD students, and visiting researchers. Administrative staff provide unique computational and research support services. Since 2007, all the personnel work at Centre du Parc in Martigny, where it currently occupies 2,500 m2 of premises over four floors.
Migros Valais functions on a cooperative mode. 74’700 persons share the property amongst them and are invited to express opinions on the society’s management. The cooperative society Migros Valais employs about 1’800 collaborators, almost exclusively from Valais, and its area of activity corresponds to the borders of the canton.
The EPAC (Academy of Contemporary Arts) is Switzerland's first school of comic strip and game art. Located in Saxon since 2001, it aims to be an experimental platform for interdisciplinary exchanges reflecting technological developments and the realities of professional life. So it offers forward-thinking training that reflects the fast-changing world of interactive, virtual, artistic media, along with mastery in the so-called traditional techniques. In this way, the students are trained to be generalists who grasp the requirements of contemporary art, at the same time as having a good understanding of the professional issues involved. The external mandates that the school carries out illustrate this regular dialogue between its students and the professional world, whether they be projects that involve traditional media, or require a transmedia approach.
Right from the start, the EPAC has drawn upon the recognized and innovative skills of many well-known personalities in the field; they give talks or lead workshops and give courses throughout the school year. These outside contributors serve to accompany the students in creating their respective art works and also introduce them to the problems and constraints of the world of professional narrative art. This dialogue between students and instructors is not limited to artistic practice; it opens onto divers other fields, like the sciences linked to modern technologies and the more conceptual fields of art.
Well aware that the field of art is fundamentally cosmopolitan, the EPAC encourages its students to be internationally mobile through its extensive network. To this end, the school has been cooperating for several years with various European universities (in Belgium, France and Poland) and in Asia, with student exchange programs between Taiwan and Switzerland, and the organization of inter-college and international competitions.
The EPAC is a private technical college, accredited by EABHES (the European Accreditation Board of Higher Education Schools); it delivers the European BA and MA.
The Valais Media Library is a cultural, patrimonial, formative and social institution at the service of the public in order to respond to its needs in terms of study, research and leisure. Bilingual, it is part of the Culture Department of the Canton of Valais and unfurls its activities on five sites – Brig, Sion, Martigny, Saint-Maurice and eMédiathèque – in a complementary manner and in unity of spirit and action. The Archives of the State of Valais have an administrative, historical and cultural mission as they are charged to assemble, to classify, to make an inventory, to conserve and to emphasize the archive documents, which belong to the State and have either been produced by the cantonal administration or concern the history of Valais and its society.
The National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) “IM2-Interactive Multimodal Information Management” is concerned with human-computer interactions. The development of interfaces constitutes the essential part of its activity. The researchers are mainly interested in the coordination of spoken, written and gestural language with multimedia systems. These multimodal interactions cover a wide range of applications: from voice recognition and visualization on a computer to the management of multimedia information. These new technologies should be used where actual technologies, as the keyboard, the mouse and the screen, prove to be unsatisfactory for complex human-machine interactions. The NCCR has allowed the growth of the Idiap research institute of Martigny and the development of its cooperation with the EPF Lausanne.
The Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) is the principal funding organization for research in Switzerland. Mandated by the Confederation, it encourages all scientific disciplines, from philosophy to biology, from nanosciences to medicine.
The Valais brand was created as a sign of recognition for both origin and quality of the Valais region’s emblematic products. It is a collective and multi-sector trademark with the objective of promoting the Valais region within the consumer and tourism markets. Consumers can be sure they are acquiring a product of high quality which comes from a socially and environmentally conscious business. The values of the Valais trademark :
The six French-speaking cantons (Vaud, Fribourg, Valais, Neuchâtel, Geneva and Jura) authorize the operation of the Loterie Romande and receive all of its benefits. Released after payment of prizes, overhead and 0.5% for the prevention of problem gambling, the profits are entirely devoted to the support of institutions romandes utility. Thousands of institutions or associations, non-profit benefit, directly or indirectly, donations from the Loterie Romande.
With the Engagement Migros development fund, Migros is voluntarily supporting projects in the fields of culture, sustainability, business and sport. The projects are funded by Migros Group companies with commercial activities in retailing, financial services and travel. The funds made available represent ten percent of the dividends disbursed by the companies each year. The development fund stems from Migros’s commitment to corporate social responsibility, supplementing the sponsorship work carried out by the Migros Culture Percentage.
The Valais State Archives fulfill an administrative, historical and cultural mission. They are in charge of collecting, evaluating, classifying, describing, conserving, giving access to and promoting the archives that belong to the state or that are produced by the cantonal administration, as well as all the documents concerning the history of Valais and its society. Within the institution, the archivists process and conserve archives entrusted to them; people from the public can access to them for all types of researches. The archivists also work with state services, municipal authorities and private persons to advise them on the management of their documents and archives.
In 2013, the Valaisan Radio Rhône FM, daughter of Radio Martigny, has celebrated its 30th birthday.
The program of Rhône FM wants to address the following needs within its concession area:
All age groups need to be addressed, with a special focus on the receptive class of 20 to 40 year-olds.
Originally founded in 2005 by Jean-Pierre Gehrig and Pierre Ihmle as a startup to help families rediscover the audiovisual heritage in digital format, Cinetis has grown into the swiss leader of movie films, photos and video tapes digitization.
Image quality is achieved by giving talented people the right tools. We built our lab by focusing quality by automating repetitive tasks so we can keep our eyes on the images.
Institutions, such as the Médiathèque Valais and the Cinémathèque des Pays de Savoie, trust Cinetis for their archival projects.