Bister, Switzerland


Coat of arms
Coordinates: 46°22′N 8°4′E / 46.367°N 8.067°E / 46.367; 8.067Coordinates: 46°22′N 8°4′E / 46.367°N 8.067°E / 46.367; 8.067
Country Switzerland
Canton Valais
District Raron
  Total 5.84 km2 (2.25 sq mi)
Elevation 1,054 m (3,458 ft)
Population (Dec 2015[2])
  Total 31
  Density 5.3/km2 (14/sq mi)
Postal code 3983
SFOS number 6172
Surrounded by Filet, Grengiols, Termen
Website website missing
SFSO statistics

Bister is a municipality in the district of Raron in the canton of Valais in Switzerland.


Bister is first mentioned in 1374 as Bystur. In 1480 it was mentioned as Bistar.[3]


Bister has an area, as of 2011, of 5.8 square kilometers (2.2 sq mi). Of this area, 18.4% is used for agricultural purposes, while 40.0% is forested. Of the rest of the land, 0.3% is settled (buildings or roads) and 41.3% is unproductive land.[4]

The municipality is located in the Östlich-Raron district. It consists of houses scattered across the valley slopes.

Coat of arms

The blazon of the municipal coat of arms is Per bend Azure and Sable, in base issuant from Water wavy Argent Coupeaux Vert and a wheat ear Or.[5]


Bister has a population (as of December 2015) of 31.[2] As of 2008, 3.7% of the population are resident foreign nationals.[6] Over the last 10 years (2000–2010 ) the population has changed at a rate of 3.8%. It has changed at a rate of 7.7% due to migration and at a rate of -15.4% due to births and deaths.[4]

All of the population (as of 2000) speaks German as their first language.[7]

As of 2008, the population was made up of 26 Swiss citizens and 1 non-citizen residents (3.70% of the population).[6] Of the population in the municipality, 15 or about 45.5% were born in Bister and lived there in 2000. There were 12 or 36.4% who were born in the same canton, while 4 or 12.1% were born somewhere else in Switzerland, and 1 or 3.0% were born outside of Switzerland.[7]

As of 2000, children and teenagers (0–19 years old) make up 9.1% of the population, while adults (20–64 years old) make up 57.6% and seniors (over 64 years old) make up 33.3%.[4]

As of 2000, there were 15 people who were single and never married in the municipality. There were 17 married individuals, 1 widows or widowers and 0 individuals who were divorced.[7]

As of 2000, there were 14 private households in the municipality, and an average of 2.1 persons per household.[4] There were 7 households that consist of only one person and 1 households with five or more people. In 2000, a total of 14 apartments (31.8% of the total) were permanently occupied, while 25 apartments (56.8%) were seasonally occupied and 5 apartments (11.4%) were empty.[8]

The historical population is given in the following chart:[3][9]


In the 2007 federal election the most popular party was the CVP which received 47.62% of the vote. The next three most popular parties were the SP (28.57%), the SVP (17.46%) and the FDP (6.35%). In the federal election, a total of 18 votes were cast, and the voter turnout was 69.2%.[10]

In the 2009 Conseil d'Etat/Staatsrat election a total of 17 votes were cast, of which 1 or about 5.9% were invalid. The voter participation was 65.4%, which is much more than the cantonal average of 54.67%.[11] In the 2007 Swiss Council of States election a total of 18 votes were cast. The voter participation was 69.2%, which is much more than the cantonal average of 59.88%.[12]


As of 2010, Bister had an unemployment rate of 0%. As of 2008, there were 8 people employed in the primary economic sector and about 3 businesses involved in this sector. No one was employed in the secondary sector or the tertiary sector.[4] There were 16 residents of the municipality who were employed in some capacity, of which females made up 56.3% of the workforce.

In 2008 the total number of full-time equivalent jobs was 4, all of which were in agriculture.[13]

In 2000, there were 9 workers who commuted away from the municipality.[14] Of the working population, 12.5% used public transportation to get to work, and 50% used a private car.[4]


From the 2000 census, 28 or 84.8% were Roman Catholic, while 3 or 9.1% belonged to the Swiss Reformed Church. Of the rest of the population, there was 1 individual who belongs to another Christian church. 1 (or about 3.03% of the population) belonged to no church, are agnostic or atheist.[7]


In Bister about 11 or (33.3%) of the population have completed non-mandatory upper secondary education, and 3 or (9.1%) have completed additional higher education (either university or a Fachhochschule). Of the 3 who completed tertiary schooling, 2 were Swiss men, 1 was a Swiss women.[7]

As of 2000, there were 2 students from Bister who attended schools outside the municipality.[14]


  1. Arealstatistik Standard - Gemeindedaten nach 4 Hauptbereichen
  2. 1 2 Swiss Federal Statistical Office - STAT-TAB, online database – Ständige und nichtständige Wohnbevölkerung nach institutionellen Gliederungen, Geburtsort und Staatsangehörigkeit (German) accessed 30 August 2016
  3. 1 2 Bister in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Swiss Federal Statistical Office Archived 5 January 2016 at the Wayback Machine. accessed 4 October 2011
  5. Flags of the accessed 4 October 2011
  6. 1 2 Swiss Federal Statistical Office - Superweb database - Gemeinde Statistics 1981-2008 Archived 28 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine. (German) accessed 19 June 2010
  7. 1 2 3 4 5 STAT-TAB Datenwürfel für Thema 40.3 - 2000 Archived 9 August 2013 at the Wayback Machine. (German) accessed 2 February 2011
  8. Swiss Federal Statistical Office STAT-TAB - Datenwürfel für Thema 09.2 - Gebäude und Wohnungen Archived 7 September 2014 at the Wayback Machine. (German) accessed 28 January 2011
  9. Swiss Federal Statistical Office STAT-TAB Bevölkerungsentwicklung nach Region, 1850-2000 Archived 30 September 2014 at the Wayback Machine. (German) accessed 29 January 2011
  10. Swiss Federal Statistical Office, Nationalratswahlen 2007: Stärke der Parteien und Wahlbeteiligung, nach Gemeinden/Bezirk/Canton Archived 14 May 2015 at the Wayback Machine. (German) accessed 28 May 2010
  11. Staatsratswahlen vom 1. März 2009 (German) accessed 24 August 2011
  12. Ständeratswahl 2007 (German) accessed 24 August 2011
  13. Swiss Federal Statistical Office STAT-TAB Betriebszählung: Arbeitsstätten nach Gemeinde und NOGA 2008 (Abschnitte), Sektoren 1-3 Archived 25 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine. (German) accessed 28 January 2011
  14. 1 2 Swiss Federal Statistical Office - Statweb (German) accessed 24 June 2010

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