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Cooperative Society Zeit-Fragen

Dear Readers

The newspaper Zeit-Fragen (and its English and French editions) is an ideologically, politically and financially independent biweekly publication. We expound backgrounds and contexts that we consider important, in order to contribute to a better understanding of current events in politics, economy, society and culture. We represent values that serve the welfare of the individual and the peaceful coexistence between all people and we are opposed to manipulation and propaganda of any kind.

This publication sees itself not as a competitor to other newspapers and magazines but as a supplement. We offer a platform to pick up on current events, but also on longer-term developments, and to introduce ethical aspects and stimulate their discussion. We are particularly committed to the policy of peace, to peace education as well as education in general, to the promotion and development of direct democracy and a federal approach. We take pleasure in supporting all pertinent, constructive proposals for solutions. We are also very involved with humane and social economic systems as an alternative to neoliberal globalization.

The newspaper Zeit-Fragen has been published since 1993. Initially coming out on a monthly basis, it changed in 2000 to a weekly and since 2014 to a biweekly paper. Because of our judicious and circumspect development work, we were able to establish ourselves in a difficult environment for independent newspapers. Upon the request of English- and French-speaking authors and readers, a French edition and an English one have been published for several years now. An Italian edition comes out four times a year with regard to the Italian-speaking population of Switzerland.

The «Cooperative Society Zeit-Fragen» is the editor of our newspapers. The Publishing House Zeit-Fragen is also part of the cooperative society. This legal form was chosen deliberately: The cooperative principles of self-determination, self-government and personal responsibility allow a like for like cooperation between all participants. The fact that Zeit-Fragen has been issued regularly for over 25 years and is financially self-supporting shows that it is still possible to publish a high-quality newspaper on current affairs on a voluntary basis. In order to remain independent, we deliberately refrain from placing product promotion or other commercial advertisements, nor have we any backing by sponsors. We finance our activities through subscriptions and potential private donations.

Jean-Paul Vuilleumier, President of the «Cooperative Society Zeit-Fragen»

Editorial team of Zeit-Fragen

We have used our newspaper to give ourselves the opportunity and the freedom to take up and discuss all those aspects that are important to us, regardless of financial or party political considerations. The welfare of the individual and the common good always serve as our point of reference.

We consider basic values such as human dignity, human rights and everything mankind has achieved up to now in the form of international law and humanitarian rules, the rule of law and democratic forms of the body politic, prerequisite for living together in freedom and dignity. In corroboration of a comprehensive peace policy, we want to keep bringing all these values back to mind and we stand up for their endorsement and compliance.

We deem direct democracy a positive expression of a civil society in which the individual carries responsibility, participates directly, as an informed and responsible person, in the constructive arrangement of living together and contributes to the common good. Democracy and, more so, direct democracy offers the individual as well as the community excellent opportunities for humane civil solutions to conflicts which impede their leading to violent forms of confrontation.

We address tendencies that threaten to question, to endanger or even to ruin these basic values in a correspondingly critical way. These tendencies include economic developments, which undermine the prospect of economic development and decent living conditions for many countries in the name of profit maximization and can be summed up by the phrases “globalization” or “neoliberal market economy”. All too often such tendencies also include massive attacks on democracy and state sovereignty and thus on self-determination. This includes war, preparations for war and war propaganda, which are always accompanied by the restriction of civil liberties.

We also take great pleasure in publishing informative and positive contributions, for instance in the fields of economy, culture, pedagogy and education.

Erika Vögeli, editor in chief

Editorial team of Horizons et débats

Horizons et débats – the French edition of Zeit-Fragen – has been published from April 2000 to end of 2006 with six issues a year. Between January 2007 and end of 2013 it has come out weekly and since 2014 biweekly.

This publication is mainly addressed to French-speaking readers in Switzerland and in France but also in numerous other countries. In terms of content it corresponds to the German an English editions.

Jean-Paul Vuilleumier, editor in chief

Editorial team of Current Concerns

Current Concerns, the English edition of Zeit-Fragen, has been appearing with an initial six issues per year since 1998, monthly since 2007, and biweekly in electronic form since 2011.

The reactions we get from our readers from all over the world show their appreciation of our independent information and thorough background analysis as well as for the contributions of authors from foreign countries and regions.

Current Concerns is also actively read at international organizations and institutions such as the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. Despite great historical, cultural and social differences, people all over the world face problems and issues showing clear parallels and deriving from common backgrounds. Our newspapers want to build bridges from person to person and from continent to continent.

Erika Vögeli, editor in chief

The editorial team of Discorso libero

Discorso libero is primarily intended for the Italian-speaking part of our country as well as for Italian readers. It appears at least four times a year. Our cooperative society wants to contribute to the promotion of solidarity between the various linguistic and cultural regions of Switzerland.

Rico Calcagnini, editor in chief