Award winner

Barbara Gysi


At the Youth Session, which took place in Bern's Käfigturm for a change, the participants chose Barbara Gysi as this year's winner of the Prix Jeunesse. The more participatory shaping of political processes is a major concern for her. According to her, democratic co-determination is also needed in schools and in the world of work. It is important that all those involved are included in decision-making processes.



Every Saturday evening during the winter half-year, sports halls are opened all over Switzerland to offer young people between the ages of 13 and 17 a place where they can meet and let off steam with games, sports and fun. Youth coaches and young adults are responsible for organising and running the events.



CinéCivic is an intercantonal project managed by the respective chancelleries of six different cantons (Geneva, Fribourg, Vaud, Neuchâtel, Valais, Jura and Bern). CinéCivic organises a competition every year to encourage young people to vote. Participants aged 10 to 25 are asked to make a short film or design a poster to motivate young people to make use of their political rights and take part in votes and elections. Prizes will be awarded for the best final products.

Jürg Grossen


The Bernese Oberländer has been a member of the National Council for the GLP since 2011. The 48-year-old entrepreneur is a qualified electrical planner and has built up his own company in Frutigen.  Jürg Grossen was nominated for the Prix Jeunesse because in 2016 he was a member of parliament in the working group on commuter flows and enthusiastically submitted the demand that arose there, "Clear the way for the future", as an interpellation in the National Council. In 2015, he also campaigned for the efficient use of federal funds in language exchanges for schoolchildren.

Konrad Graber


Konrad Graber, CVP member of the Council of States, received the Prix Jeunesse at the closing event of the 25th anniversary of the Federal Youth Session. This was in recognition of his commitment to young people. A panel on the future of Swiss politics from a cross-generational perspective concluded the celebrations for the 25th anniversary of the Federal Youth Session.

Didier Burkhalter


President Didier Burkhalter has defined youth as one of three priority themes of his year in office. As Chairman of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), he also championed youth and, together with the Swiss National Youth Council (SNYC), launched the OSCE model - a project that aims to give youth an opportunity to participate in the OSCE.

Jean-François Steiert


Strengthening political education - this is the goal of both the Youth Session and the Fribourg National Councillor Jean-François Steiert (SP). Since 2012, the 52-year-old family man has been President of the Dialogue Foundation, which organises the "Youth Debates" project and promotes political education among young people throughout Switzerland by means of debating rounds and school courses. Steiert is also pursuing the idea of setting up a "Campus for Democracy" to network projects and institutions in the field of civic education.

Mathias Reynard


Mathias Reynard was awarded the "Prix Jeunesse" for his commitment to education: In his parliamentary initiative "Stop raising tuition fees", he called for access to higher education for all sections of the population. Born in 1987 in Valais, he was elected to the National Council for the first time in November 2011 and was the youngest member of parliament when he took office, making him the youthful voice in politics at federal level. 

Luc Barthassat


Luc Barthassat was awarded the Prix Jeunesse for his commitment to Sans Papiers (people without official documents). In September 2010, one of his initiatives was a small success. In a motion, Luc Barthassat asked the Federal Council to allow young people without legal status who had completed their schooling in Switzerland to access a vocational apprenticeship. Although rejected by the Federal Council and the relevant government policy committee, his motion was approved by both the National Council and the Council of States. In February 2013, the amendment to the ordinance demanded by the CVP National Councillor was passed.

Roger Nordmann


Roger Nordmann was awarded for his commitment to youth and family policy in 2010. One of his initiatives called for paternity leave, but was rejected in parliament. In the recent past, the SP (social democratic party) man from Lausanne also dealt with the issue of Sans Papiers. Together with other politicians, he is calling for an improvement in the situation of young Sans Papiers with school education in Switzerland. 

Otto Ineichen


Otto Ineichen initiated the "Speranza" project, which by 2009 had created about 8,000 training places (apprenticeships, internships, pre-apprenticeships) for young people who have particular difficulty finding a job on the apprenticeship market. The internet platform "Job-Passerelle", which was also initiated by Otto Ineichen, aims to reach people who have difficulties integrating into the world of work because they are disabled or because their disability significantly impairs their ability to work and perform.

Pascale Bruderer


The Councillor from the canton of Aargau was once the youngest member of the National Council in Switzerland. Since the beginning of her political career, she has been committed to children and young people. A particular concern of the young National Councillor is popular sport and the promotion of physical activity. Pascale Bruderer is committed to a comprehensive education policy, the creation of new apprenticeships and job profiles, fair scholarships and political education.