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Zurich Center for Economic Development

Launched officially in December 2016 at the University of Zurich, the Zurich Center for Economic Development’s research and teaching address key questions for economic development and public finance in developing countries.

In an inaugural meeting, Swiss Re experts from the divisions Global Partnerships, Group Sustainability Risk, Risk Research and Life & Health Research and Development met with Professors Lorenzo Casaburi and Dina Pomeranz, who presented insights from their research on topics such as the role of crop insurance in rural finance and the potential and limits of micro-savings as a form of self-insurance. The dialogue between Swiss Re and the Center aims to identify topics and projects of mutual interest to academics and insurers or reinsurers.

The Swiss Re Foundation contributes funding to the Zurich Center for Economic Development because it facilitates a better understanding of insurance markets and insurance behaviour in emerging economies. The University of Zurich’s Department of Economics is renowned for its innovative methods in experimental and behavioral economics, a strength on which the Center builds. Many of the developing countries on which the Center’s research focuses lie in regions where the Foundation is active. By helping improve insurance protection in societies and communities that suffer from a ‘protection gap’, insights gained from this collaboration will increase the long-term risk resilience of those who live and work there.

Excellence Foundation Zurich


The Excellence Foundation Zurich is an independent foundation and its objective is to allow economists at the University of Zurich assume a globally leading role in the future in the most pressing questions of our time.


We address the big challenges facing the world today, from migration and urbanisation to rising longevity.

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