Most of the statistics along the years indicate Geneva as leading among cities with the highest quality of life (tailed closely by Zurich and Viena). It is also ranked as one of the world’s five most expensive cities in the world. It is one of the most important financial centres on the globe, ranked third in Europe and eighth in the world.
Situated in Switzerland, the city spreads on the shores of the largest lake in Europe, Lake Leman, known for its famous white swans. Also called the Capital of Peace, Geneva is a worldwide centre for diplomacy, as it hosts numerous international organizations – including the headquarters of many of the United Nations agencies and the Red Cross. It is also the place where the Geneva Conventions were signed, concerning the treatment of prisoners and victims of war.
The Protestant leader John Calvin lived and died in Geneva, and became the spiritual leader of the city. Voltaire and Rousseau are two other important personalities who lived here. In 1898, Empress Elisabeth, wife of Emperor Franz Joseph I and better known as Sissi, was assassinated in Geneva.
The University of Geneva, founded by John Calvin in 1559, is considered one of the best in the world even if, compared to other universities, it has a small number of students.