Democracy index of Switzerland. A proof that the country is a "full democracy"

Academic Paper, 2016
12 Pages, Grade: 5.50


Table of Contents




General characteristics of Switzerland

Basic information

Economy of Switzerland

A methodology of the research


Summary and conclusions



The present research examines the question of the democracy index of Switzerland. Moreover, its investigation is obligatory as recent literature on the subject connects the level of democracy of a particular country to its level of development and innovation. However, the latter is a concept usually ignored in the establishment of relevant policies and action strategies. Thus, the present paper debates the question that the democracy index of a country such as Switzerland places it among the countries having the highest level of “full democracy.


Recent literature on the subject connects the level of democracy of a particular country to its level of development and innovation. As stated by Coppedge (2005) the enormous potential of one country in innovation and development might lead to an excessive reduction in poverty in case the country is considered to be democratic. However, the most important fact deserving to be mentioned here is that the democracy index is different in any country and that is the reason why it deserves attention (Fukuyama, 2011). Additionally, before determining the real extent of research we need to explain what a research is. As shown by Hoey (2011) any type of scientific study from its creative conception to the mere completion of the scientific work is made strictly individually. Notwithstanding that fact there exist shared methodological approaches.

For example, everything in one scientific research is significant and important and every new scientific fact must be obtained from an explanation in the modern science (Fukuyama, 2004). Instead of that, most of the ideas are created in practice and at their core lies the real facts and events. What is more, the development of ideas is often interconnected with problems occurring during the research process (Coppedge, 2005).

In the scientific research planned in the present essay the index of democracy of Switzerland for 2015 is aimed to be investigated; namely, four categories of democracy are being differentiated: full democracy, flawed democracy, hybrid regimes and authoritarian regimes.

According to Diamond (2011), the number of countries exhibiting full democracy is relatively low – only 20 percent of the countries on a global scale are considered to have an index of full democracy. On the contrary, flawed democracies are situated mostly in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Asia and their number equals 59 countries. Similar is the number of the authoritarian regimes, while hybrid regimes are only 37 states (Diamond, 2011).


The hypothesis, an intrinsic part of my research, lies in the fact that I will try to achieve the same result as in the EU Index of 2015 and will conform to the opinion that Switzerland is a full economy country (Diamond, 2011).

However, in contrast with the abovementioned empirical studies focusing on the impact of democracy index on the regional and total households inequalities, the present paper attempts to provide empirical data on the index of democracy of Switzerland. It is organized in the following manner; section I is the introductory part, section II accentuates on the research question and shows the general characteristics of the country. In Section III the method of study is described, while Section IV discusses the findings. In the concluding Section V are presented the conclusion and relevant recommendations.

General characteristics of Switzerland

Basic information

The country Switzerland is an inland confederation, situated in the central part of Europe. Its neighboring countries are Germany to the north, France to the west, Italy to the south, Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. The capital of the country is Stockholm (, 2018).

The country is famous for the tendency to keep its neutrality; determinative for its index of democracy is the fact that a majority of international organizations are located in the country. Its population is around 7.459 million people (2015), and its average density - about 181 g. / km2 (MySwitzerland, 2018). Additionally, the country represents a federation of almost autonomous cantons, having a history of more than 700 years (, 2018).

Several major European cultures have influenced the language and culture of the country; in its territory four official languages are presented - German (64%) in the northern and central parts, French (19%) to the west, Italian (8%) and Romanish in the south. The most widespread religion is Roman Catholicism with followers of 43% of the population, 35% Protestants. Also, the immigrant Muslims are around 4%, Orthodox 2%. The other part of the population has a belonging to a minority religious groups, or has no belonging at all (, 2018).

Talking about democracy and democracy index the fact that Switzerland is a federal parliamentary republic, with each canton having its own government must be noted. What is more, the legislative power of the country consists of Federal Assembly with two equal in power branches – National Council of 200 deputies, elected every four years and the Board of Cantons. The country consists of 26 cantons, 20 of which are “full cantons” and 6 “semi-cantons”. Among the cantons ‘powers are the education and justice sector (, 2018).

Economy of Switzerland

The economy of the country is hugely developed, making it one of the richest countries in the world. Several sectors are at its peak such as banks, chocolate, dairy products such as cheese and watches of exceptional quality. Tourism is also flourishing in the country (, 2018).

However, the country is not an EU member, keeping a policy of neutrality and at the same time of stable trade connections with Europe.

A methodology of the research

The data for our research was extracted from questionnaires. As stated at the beginning of the present research a study was carried out in 2015. The present survey will be a combination of a dichotomous and a three-point scoring system of 60 indicators.

Categorization of democracy-related questions

The present paper examines the question of the democracy index of Switzerland. However, the process of investigating it requires identification of the type of political activities, carried out in the country. In regard to areas such as political participation, political culture, and civil liberties, the figures are 7.78, 9.38 and 9.41, respectively (EIU, 2015). Thus, according to it the overall score of Switzerland is 9.09, placing it at a sixth place among the world’s full democracies.

For the first group of questions, regarding the electoral process and pluralism, based on our knowledge we have the following:

1. How are the national legislature and head of government elections conducted?

1: Essentially unrestricted conditions for the presentation of candidates (for example, no bans on major parties).

2. Are they fairly conducted?

1: No huge discrepancies in the voting process.


Excerpt out of 12 pages


Democracy index of Switzerland. A proof that the country is a "full democracy"
Anglia Ruskin University
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
democracy, index, Switzerland, EUI, full democracy, level, 2015, 2016
Quote paper
Silviya Stamenova (Author), 2016, Democracy index of Switzerland. A proof that the country is a "full democracy", Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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