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Democracy Lab How to serve up an initiative that is hard to digest

Some Swiss votes can be extremely technical and the need for independent viewpoints is vital. But experts’ clarifications can sometimes be incomprehensible and not necessarily neutral. Fabio Canetg thinks he has the answer. 

Grasping a full understanding of cantonal tax models, national fiscal equalisation and monetary policy – such as the current ‘sovereign money’ initiative – can be tough-going for Swiss voters. 

Such initiatives are complex, and the public and media rely heavily on specialists for explanation. But care is needed, as they are not always neutral or crystal clear. 

Fabio Canetg, an economics PhD assistant at Bern University, thinks he has the solution. He claims to be a strictly neutral economics specialist with a deep understanding of the sovereign money initiative, on which Switzerland will vote on June 10. 

He spends part of his time travelling across Switzerland giving 45-minute presentations on the issue to interested citizens to help them form their own opinions before voting.

Translated from German by Simon Bradley

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