Human development

Switzerland’s international cooperation works at different levels to advance human development. Through efforts such as the provision of crisis and disaster relief and the strengthening of equal access to quality basic services like education and healthcare, Switzerland helps to save lives and improve the living conditions of many communities.

Switzerland’s international cooperation takes a human-centred approach to everything it does. This is why human development is one of the main priorities of Switzerland's International Cooperation Strategy 2021–24. The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) aims to save lives, ensure access to quality basic services like education, internet access, healthcare, food and safe drinking water, and provide relief in the event of crises and disasters. Through this action, Switzerland also helps to reduce the causes of forced and irregular migration.

Crisis and disaster relief

Armed conflict and natural hazards like earthquakes and tsunamis pose a serious threat to the civilian population. The SDC is committed to disaster risk reduction, reconstruction and rehabilitation in crisis and conflict situations. Through this action, Switzerland contributes to post-disaster and post-conflict efforts to restore basic services. To ensure that communities are also protected from the adverse effects of future crises and disasters, the SDC shifts the focus of its engagement from emergency relief to sustainable bilateral development cooperation.

Improved access to basic services

Switzerland’s international cooperation strengthens universal access to quality basic services, especially education and healthcare. Investment in these systems helps to drive economic development. Ensuring equitable access to safe drinking water, sanitation, energy and food is another key part of SDC efforts to improve the living conditions of disadvantaged communities.