Switzerland is a small-sized country in Europe. In fact, it is situated north of Germany and west of France and neighbors Italy to the south and borders Austria to the east. The country measures about forty one thousand two hundred and ninety square kilometers. Switzerland is best known for its outstanding tranquil fields of blossoms and its vast pine forests that decorate its landscape. In addition, its landscape comprises of a magnificent natural beauty with ice glaciers, rolling hills, valleys and lakes that are exceptionally enticing (Hockfield 99).
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Switzerland’s population was estimated at seven million and eight hundred thousand in the year 2010. Switzerland’s population is made up of Alemannic German speakers as well as a Latin minority speakers who make up approximately twenty percent of the entire population. Switzerland has a consistent trend in life quality ranks in terms of per capita income, insurance coverage for its citizens, health care ranks and the use of computers and the internet per capita (Larson 44)
Thus, it is a key business hub for introducing new products into the European market. Switzerland is known to be a neutral country, especially with matters that pertian economic, political or military action. This has been its tradition since the sixteenth century. It has upheld its policy of neutrality so far which is traced back to an international recognition at the congress of Vienna in the year 1815. This has ensured it stability and only became a member of the United Nations lately in the twenty first century in the year 2002. The country has diplomatic affiliation with most states and plays the role of an intermediary between states since ancient times in history. Various international institutions are based in Switzerland due to its policy of neutrality. In fact, most international institution have headquarters in Switzerland and a handful of them such as the Red Cross, the Geneva conventions as well as the Red Cresent were founded there. The most notable international institution is the League of Nations which Switzerland was a founding partner , which is also based in Geneva (Larson 47)
The 1848 constitution of Switzerland that fostered republican tradition formed a foundation which the current system of governance is based apart from a few adjustments. In fact, this constitution was fully revised on 1999, but did not alter the political structure. Thus the initial constitution still contributed many features of the current system in Switzerland system of administration (Zschokke 204).
The 1848 and the 1999 constitution are arguably the two most significant documents that influence modern system of governance in Switzerland. The jurisdictions stipulated in these two documents are evident in the system of administration since ever Switzerland acquired a formal mode of governance.
The Swiss people are governed through direct democracy which is structured into three main jurisdictions. These jurisdictions are the canton, commune and federal levels. Switzerland’s 1848 federal constitution stipulates a system that upholds direct democracy that is, representative democracy. The tools of direct democracy in switzerland at the federal level are refereed to as civic rights. These rights mandate the citizens the right to submit a constitutional proposal and a referendum . However, the country adapted a new constitution in the year 1999, but the federal structure remained intact. In the constitution, the power is divided between the Confederation and the cantons. In additional, federal jurisdiction and authority is stipulated ( Zschokke 288).
The federal level constitutes of a federal council and a federal court as well as the national parliament which has two houses of representatives that is, the council of states and the national council. In some instance, these two houses work as a combined house and are collectively called federal assembly .
Switzerland has multi-party democracy and gives power to top four parties according to the outcome of elections. Christian Democratic People’s Party is the fourth largest in Switzerland in the National Council, but the largest in the Council of states. The Swiss People’s Party is a conservative party and it is the largest in the country’s federal assembly it was founded in the 1910s by a group of farmers. The Conservative Democratic Party of Switzerland was founded as a splinter party from the Swiss People’s Party. The Social democratic Party of Switzerland is the subsequent largest party and is believed to have been founded on October 21, 1888. It ranks second in the Swiss parliament (Zschokke 314).