Joseph Deiss

Joseph Deiss

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Joseph Deiss is an economist, Swiss
Switzerland
Switzerland name of one of the Swiss cantons. ; ; ; or ), in its full name the Swiss Confederation , is a federal republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities. The country is situated in Western Europe,Or Central Europe depending on the definition....

 politician and a member of the Christian Democratic People's Party (CVP/PDC)
Christian Democratic People's Party of Switzerland
The Christian Democratic People's Party of Switzerland is a Christian democratic political party in Switzerland. It is the fourth-largest party in the National Council, with 31 seats, and the largest in the Council of States, with 15 seats. It has one seat, that of Doris Leuthard, on the Swiss...

. From 1999 to 2006, he was a member of the Swiss Federal Council
Swiss Federal Council
The Federal Council is the seven-member executive council which constitutes the federal government of Switzerland and serves as the Swiss collective head of state....

, heading first the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs
Federal Department of Foreign Affairs
The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs is a department of the federal administration of Switzerland. It is charged with maintaining the foreign relations of Switzerland and serves as Switzerland's ministry of foreign affairs...

 (1999–2002) and then the Federal Department of Economic Affairs
Federal Department of Economic Affairs
The Federal Department of Economic Affairs is one of the seven departments of the federal government of Switzerland, headed by a member of the Swiss Federal Council.-Organisation:The Department is composed of the following offices:...

 (2003–2006). He was elected President of the United Nations General Assembly
President of the United Nations General Assembly
The President of the United Nations General Assembly is a position voted for by representatives in the United Nations General Assembly on a yearly basis.- Election :...

 for its 65th session in 2010.

Legislative and local experience


Joseph Deiss started his political career in 1981 as a representative of his party in the cantonal parliament of Fribourg
Canton of Fribourg
The Canton of Fribourg is a canton of Switzerland. It is located in the west of the country. The capital of the canton is Fribourg. The name Fribourg is French, whereas is the German name for both the canton and the town.-History:...

. In 1991 he became the president of the cantonal parliament for one year. Between 1982 and 1996 Deiss was the mayor of his home village Barberêche
Barberêche
Barberêche is a municipality in the district of Lac in the Swiss canton of Fribourg. It lies on the "language boundary" between the French- and German-speaking parts of Switzerland, and so also bears a German name: Bärfischen. In 2003 its population was 574.-Geography:Barberêche lies 569 m above...

 (FR).

In 1991 he was elected to the National Council
National Council of Switzerland
The National Council of Switzerland is the lower house of the Federal Assembly of Switzerland. With 200 seats, it is the larger of the two houses....

. From 1995 to 1996 Deiss was vice president of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council. In 1996 he was made president of the committee in charge of the total revision of the Swiss Constitution.

In the Federal Council


Deiss was elected to the Swiss Federal Council
Swiss Federal Council
The Federal Council is the seven-member executive council which constitutes the federal government of Switzerland and serves as the Swiss collective head of state....

 on March 11, 1999, along with his erstwhile colleague Ruth Metzler-Arnold. Together with Adalbert Durrer and Remigio Ratti, he was one of three official candidates proposed by the CVP for the seat of retiring Councillor Flavio Cotti
Flavio Cotti
Flavio Cotti born in Prato-Sornico on 18 October 1939) is a Swiss politician.He was elected to the Federal Council of Switzerland on 10 December 1986 and handed over office on 30 April 1999...

. However, the election became a narrow contest between Deiss and Peter Hess, who was favoured by many conservative representatives. Deiss eventually won after the sixth ballot, by 120 to 119 votes.

In office, he has headed the following departments:
  • Federal Department of Foreign Affairs
    Federal Department of Foreign Affairs
    The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs is a department of the federal administration of Switzerland. It is charged with maintaining the foreign relations of Switzerland and serves as Switzerland's ministry of foreign affairs...

     (1999–2002)
  • Federal Department of Economic Affairs
    Federal Department of Economic Affairs
    The Federal Department of Economic Affairs is one of the seven departments of the federal government of Switzerland, headed by a member of the Swiss Federal Council.-Organisation:The Department is composed of the following offices:...

     (since 2003)


After the failure of Ruth Metzler
Ruth Metzler
Ruth Metzler-Arnold is a Swiss politician and former member of the Swiss Federal Council .She was elected to the Swiss Federal Council on 11 March 1999, as a member of the Christian Democratic People's Party from the Canton of Appenzell Innerrhoden. During her time in office she has headed the...

 to be re-elected in 2003
Swiss Federal Council election, 2003
Elections to the Swiss Federal Council were held on 10 December 2003 to elect all seven of Switzerland's Federal Council. The 246 members of the United Federal Assembly elect the seven members individually by an absolute majority of votes, with the members serving for four years, beginning on 1...

, Metzler challenged him for his seat, but lost by 138 votes to 96. He was subsequently elected President of the Confederation for 2004, one year earlier than would have been regular. He became the only remaining representative of the CVP in the Council.

On April 27, 2006, Deiss rather unexpectedly resigned as Federal Councillor. The CVP's seat not being contested by the other parties, he was succeeded by the president of the CVP, Doris Leuthard
Doris Leuthard
Doris Leuthard is a Swiss politician and lawyer. Since 1 August 2006, she has been a member of the Swiss Federal Council. From 1 August 2006 till 31 October 2010 she was head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs...

, who took over from Deiss on August 1, 2006.

Professional career


Joseph Deiss studied economics and social sciences for his first degree at the University of Fribourg
University of Fribourg
The University of Fribourg is a university in the city of Fribourg, Switzerland.The roots of the University can be traced back to 1582, when the notable Jesuit Peter Canisius founded the Collège Saint-Michel in the City of Fribourg. In 1763, an Academy of law was founded by the state of Frobourg...

. He continued to complete a doctorate at the same university after which he spent some time doing research at King's College
King's College, Cambridge
King's College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge, England. The college's full name is "The King's College of our Lady and Saint Nicholas in Cambridge", but it is usually referred to simply as "King's" within the University....

 at the University of Cambridge
University of Cambridge
The University of Cambridge is a public research university located in Cambridge, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest university in both the United Kingdom and the English-speaking world , and the seventh-oldest globally...

.

After this period of research Joseph Deiss took on the post of lecturing Economics at the University of Fribourg. In 1983 he was made visiting professor at a number of Swiss universities: ETH Zurich
ETH Zurich
The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich or ETH Zürich is an engineering, science, technology, mathematics and management university in the City of Zurich, Switzerland....

, University of Lausanne
University of Lausanne
The University of Lausanne in Lausanne, Switzerland was founded in 1537 as a school of theology, before being made a university in 1890. Today about 12,000 students and 2200 researchers study and work at the university...

 and University of Geneva
University of Geneva
The University of Geneva is a public research university located in Geneva, Switzerland.It was founded in 1559 by John Calvin, as a theological seminary and law school. It remained focused on theology until the 17th century, when it became a center for Enlightenment scholarship. In 1873, it...

.

From 1993 to 1996 Joseph Deiss acted as National Price Supervisor. He then returned to the University of Fribourg to become the Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences. At this time at university, Joseph Deiss was also the chairman of the Board of Directors at Schumacher AG in Schmitten
Schmitten, Fribourg
Schmitten is a municipality in the district of Sense in the canton of Fribourg in Switzerland.-Geography:Schmitten is located at an elevation of 647 m above sea level. The aerial distance to the canton's capital Fribourg is 9 km. The town stands on a plateau east of the Dälihubel which is...

 (FR) and chairman of the Raiffeisenbank in Haut-Lac, Courtepin
Courtepin
Courtepin is a municipality in the district of See in the canton of Fribourg in Switzerland.It was first recorded in 1259 as Courtipin. The German name Curtepy is depecrated....

 (FR).

In 2009 he received the title of Doctor Honoris Causa from BSL, Business School Lausanne
BSL, Business School Lausanne
BSL was founded in 1987 by John Hobbs, a university professor who felt business education was missing valuable practical learning. He built BSL as a small international business school in Lausanne, Switzerland certified by the ACBSP in 1996 and in 1997 it was integrated into the Group of Private...

.

Personal life


Deiss is married and has three sons.

Joseph Deiss is an Honorary Member of The International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation

Works

  • Manuel d'économie politique, with Danielle Meuwly, 1st edition 1994, reedited.
  • Initiation à l'économie politique : analyse économique de la Suisse, 1st edition 1982, reedited.
  • Economie politique et politique économique de la Suisse, 1st edition 1979, reedited.
  • The regional adjustment process and regional monetary policy, 1978.
  • La théorie pure des termes de l'échange international, doctorate thesis, 1971.

External links