The SSC celebrates its centenary in Geneva

The Swiss Chronometry Society (SSC) celebrated its 100th anniversary on 13 June this year at the Palais de l’Athénée, headquarters of the Société des Arts, the very place where the institution was born. Around a hundred people took part in the event, which highlighted a century of innovation, precision and excellence in Swiss watchmaking.

The ceremony was attended by Pierre Maudet, State Councillor of the Canton of Geneva; Alfonso Gomez, Administrative Councillor of the City of Geneva; Jacques Gerber, State Councillor of the Canton of Jura, as well as numerous representatives of the watchmaking cantons, the University of Geneva, the EPFL along with several watchmaking schools and training centres.

The detailed historical part of the event presented the highlights of the centenary. The SSC’s gold medal was also awarded posthumously for the first time to Léopold Defossez, who chaired the SSC’s founding committee when it was created in 1924. Through his many activities, he made a major contribution to the society’s development and to the strength of the Swiss watch industry. The medal was presented to his family, who donated it to the Musée International d’Horlogerie (MIH) in La Chaux-de-Fonds. The evening also saw the creation of the Presidents’ Commission, bringing together all those who are still alive and have held this position. A ribbon-cutting ceremony brought the evening to a close, symbolising the start of the second centenary.

The celebrations will continue on 24 September with a gala evening at the Bâtiment des Forces Motrices in Geneva. Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin and a number of state councillors will be in attendance. Uniting some 400 guests, this event will feature four tableaux honouring the SSC’s four watchmaking regions. The following day will see a day of lectures at CERN on the theme “Artists of Time”. A rich programme will evoke the roots and traditions of the association, while taking stock of current knowledge and looking ahead to future challenges.

With its 1,400 members, the SSC aims to promote the art and science of measuring time. It brings together experts, researchers and watchmaking professionals to encourage innovation, research and development in this field. It aims to preserve and pass on Swiss watchmaking know-how, while fostering exchanges and friendship between the various stakeholders in the industry. Through its actions, it supports technical training, promotes and stimulates excellence and contributes to the development and worldwide recognition of Swiss watchmaking. It is structured around a rotating presidency between the four watchmaking regions (Bern-Jura-Basel-German-speaking Switzerland, Neuchâtel, Vaud-Valais-Fribourg-Ticino and Geneva), which changes every three years. Currently, the Geneva Bureau, headed by Olivier Kuffer, will run the institution until 2026.

July 04, 2024