Switzerland maintains a tradition of private safeguarding of company and association archives. For this reason, the Swiss Economic Archives is not a federal institution and does not receive any subsidies.  

The Foundation for the Promotion of the Swiss Economic Archives (Stiftung zur Förderung des SWA) enables companies and associations to financially contribute to the archiving of their archival collections. Private individuals, companies and associations who find the SWA worth supporting can make a donation.  

It is only thanks to this private support that valuable company archives can be preserved for historical research. Economic history is dependent on these sources in order to gain scholarly knowledge.  


The Swiss Economic Archives is run by the University of Basel. The university’s funds allow the operation of an economic history and economic sciences library and the documentation on economic topics and players. Alongside this, private funds are necessary.Only with the help of private funding can private economic archives be taken over, made accessible, and secured for the long term for future use.

For projects that support the strategic orientation of the Swiss Economic Archives or that increase the level of awareness, we are dependent on private funding. The annual report provides information about our activities.

The foundation works with regular or one-off contributions from companies, associations, private individuals, other foundations and lottery funds.
As a rule, contributions can be deducted from cantonal taxes.

You too can support our projects.

Thanks to donations from patrons, the foundation has modest assets.

The main task of the foundation is to raise third-party funding from other foundations, from lottery funds and from sponsors.

In 2019, the SWA announced a research prize for the first time. The prize was awarded for the first time in 2020 – the prizewinner will be presented during a lecture evening in 2021.

Third announcement 2021 (PDF, in German and French)

The call for applications runs from April to December each year.
The application (by e-mail) includes the publication (preferably in digital form), a letter of application and a curriculum vitae.
The jury evaluates the work by May and announces the decision to the applicants.
The prize ceremony and lecture will take place during the winter semester as part of the lecture series of the Historical and Antiquarian Society of Basel HAG.

The jury is composed of:

Dr. Markus von Escher, President, representative of the economy, President of the Foundation for the Promotion of the Swiss Economic Archives

Prof. Dr. Tobias Straumann, economic historian, external member

Prof. Dr. Heinz Zimmermann, financial market theorist, University of Basel, member of the foundation board

Prof. Dr. Matthieu Leimgruber, economic historian, University of Zurich, external member

Prof. Dr. Martin Lengwiler, social and economic historian, University of Basel, external member

Regulations Research prize SWA (PDF, in German)

President of the Foundation board

Dr. Markus von Escher, EMBA HSG, President of the board of directors, Remaco Asset Management AG, Basel

Members of the Foundation board

Irene Amstutz, Head of University Business and Economics Library – Swiss Economic Archives

Jürg Hagmann, lic. phil., managing owner RIM, Baden, Partner Kompetenzzentrum Records Management (KRM), Zollikon

Daniel Hanimann, Delegate for economic contacts, Swiss National Bank, Basel

Alice Keller, Director University Library Basel

Prof. Dr. Alexis Schwarzenbach, School of Art and Design, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Prof. Dr. Heinz Zimmermann, Finance Department, Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Basel


PricewaterhouseCoopers AG, Basel


Irene Amstutz, Head of University Business and Economics Library – Swiss Economic Archives

Postal address

Stiftung zur Förderung des Schweizerischen Wirtschaftsarchivs
Peter Merian-Weg 6, Postfach
4002 Basel
+41 (0)61 207 32 10

Account number

Postal Account No (PC) 40-18825-7

IBAN CH02 0900 0000 4001 8825 7 (BIC: POFICHBEXXX)

Registry of Commerce

Cantonal excerpt

In addition to the Foundation for the Promotion of the Swiss Economic Archives (Stiftung zur Förderung des SWA) there is also the Fritz Mangold Foundation, named after the former head of the SWA.

Its task is to promote publications in the field of national economy and statistics and to acquire literature that will be made available in the SWA.

Foundation board: Irene Amstutz (President), Prof. Dr. Alois Stutzer, Prof. Dr. Rolf Weder