NEXPLORER – What does your Switzerland look like?

  • Melanie Wydler

Created with a modest budget but a great deal of passion for exploring new possibilities together, we are very proud of our prototype – the start of our wonderful voyage of discovery!

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A dynamic opinion poll that may soon outgrow itself

NEXPLORER is a pilot project of our client NEXPO (an initiative put together by the ten largest Swiss cities for the 2028 national exhibition).

Together, our goal is to develop a digital opinion poll that is fun to take part in. We want to know what the Swiss people think. We have now laid the foundations that will allow NEXPLORER to grow continuously until 2028, and perhaps even beyond.

What is NEXPLORER?

  • The name says it all: it is a voyage of discovery taking place over around 10 years as part of the NEXPO national exhibition, which will be held in 2028 and mark the culmination of the project.
  • NEXPLORER is a dynamic, participatory opinion poll on the topic ‘Living together in the 21st century’, capturing the opinions and attitudes of people living in Switzerland.
  • This is done using a specially made model – a changing Swiss cross – that draws on the well-established principles of a radar chart. The shape of the Swiss cross changes depending on how the questions are answered.
  • With the NEXPLORER pilot project, NEXPO is clearly drawing on the (in)famousGulliver survey for the Expo 1964 in Lausanne and the ‘Point de Suisse’ project (2014/15, published on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Gulliver survey). Both projects prompted intense discussion about Switzerland and its national self-perception.

What is NEXPLORER’s aim?

  • NEXPLORER is the response to a rapidly changing Switzerland, where discourse is also increasingly being shaped online. With NEXPLORER, NEXPO is seeking to replace the traditional public opinion poll format with a questionnaire, and will also allow the public to see which topics other people in Switzerland find interesting.
  • NEXPLORER wants to encourage the public to take part.
  • NEXPLORER is completely new way of conducting an opinion poll and gaining a depiction of the public spirit, and is set to become a NEXPO icon.

A multi-year voyage of discovery... We don’t need asking twice, count us in!

A great idea, a fixed deadline (1 August 2020) and a modest budget to provide a proof of concept for NEXPLORER.

A grand vision. But the first step was to focus on the essentials and test the initial idea:

  • The heart of the idea: the survey and values profile
  • A survey that is easy to take part in, speaks to the younger generation, can also be used by the less internet-savvy participants and, most importantly, is fun to do!
  • Multilingual (DE, FR, IT, EN)
  • A solution that will continue to evolve

After two workshops, an initial test phase for the question catalogue and only two weeks of development, the first usable NEXPLORER prototype was ready!
A lot of valuable lessons and a deep appreciation of the project itself were gained from the close collaboration between the user experience designers and the developers. Find out more from the people involved!

Although we achieved a lot in two weeks, one important, essential element was still missing: a visualisation of the individual and overall results of the survey using the Swiss cross.

As the deadline and budget remain tight, our teams are working together closely on the essential elements, performing a delicate balancing act:

  • Focusing on what is really relevant
  • Meeting users’ needs and making everything easy to use (accessibility)
  • Weighing up what is ideal and what is feasible

This all fits in with our motto: start small – grow later!

How far have we got?

Try it for yourself and find out what your Switzerland looks like: www.nexplorer.ch

We are excited to see how this project evolves and look forward to continuing on this joint voyage of discovery when NEXPLORER is able to be developed further. Plus we can't wait for when you can get involved in shaping this survey too!


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