The Swiss-based New7Wonders Foundation was established in 2001 by the Swiss-born Canadian filmmaker, author and adventurer Bernard Weber to contribute to the protection of the world‚s human-built and natural heritage and to foster respect for our planet’s diversity.
New7Wonders is funded entirely by licensing and commercial partnerships with companies, TV rightsholders, event organizers, and through interactive revenue shares. New7Wonders does not draw any funds from public, government or taxpayer subsidies. In fact, the reverse is the case: through its positive global platform, New7Wonders has so far generated more than US$5 billion worth of economic, tourism and national promotional value for locations participating in its campaigns. New7Wonders is a major, global-scale proof of a business concept based on mass virtual online dynamics creating concrete economic positive outcomes in the real world.
New7Wonders has pledged to dedicate 50% of its surplus net revenues to the main New7Wonders Foundation cause: the promotion of Global Memory, specifically the documentation and 3D virtual recording of all New7Wonders. Out of its own funds, the New7Wonders Foundation already financed the 3D virtual model of the giant Bamiyan Buddhas in Afghanistan, as an example of the type of project it plans to support. This New7Wonders Foundation project was featured in the Swiss Pavilion at the 2005 World Fair in Aichi, Japan, along with New7Wonders ballot boxes. Amongst all other global media and voting- driven initiatives (e.g. TV formats and singing contests), New7Wonders is unique in its pledge to dedicate a significant portion of its net revenues to Foundation causes.
The funds that New7Wonders receives through its licensing and commercial partnerships are used as follows:
- To set up and run the global New7Wonders voting platform
- To run the first campaign to elect the Official New7Wonders of the World
- To run the second campaign to elect the Official New7Wonders of Nature
- To run the current campaign to elect the Official New7Wonders Cities
- To run the New7Wonders organization
- To create a surplus for distribution as described above.
Until now, all monies received by New7Wonders have been (entirely) used to fund the running and campaign costs. The mission is thus to if possible create a surplus during the current New7Wonders of Cities campaign.
The Foundation is based at the Heidi-Weber-Museum in Zurich, Switzerland, an architectural landmark in itself – the last building designed by Le Corbusier, one of the most renowned artists and architects of the past century.
The first chapter of New7Wonders drew to a successful close when the results of the world’s first-ever global election were announced in Lisbon on 07.07.07. More than 100 million votes had been cast by citizens worldwide using modern communications technology in this unprecedented global dialogue and with this also “Global Memory” was created for the first time in history. The ceremony ended with the exciting launch of the current campaign: The New7Wonders Cities!