Joseph Deiss

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Joseph Deiss at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos 2004

Joseph Deiss (born January 18, 1946 in Freiburg ; legal resident in Barberêche ( Bärfischen ) and Zeihen ) is a Swiss politician ( CVP ).

Job and family

After attending school in Freiburg, Joseph Deiss studied economics and social sciences and received his doctorate in 1973 . From 1973 he lectured economics at the University of Freiburg . He spent some time with research at King's College of Cambridge University .

1983 Deiss was an associate professor, in 1984 he received a reputation as an Associate Professor of Economics and Economic Policy at the University of Freiburg. From 1996 to 1998 he was Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences there. During his time at the university, he was also Chairman of the Board of Directors of Schumacher AG in Schmitten and Chairman of the Raiffeisenbank in Courtepin .

Joseph Deiss is married and has three children. He lived in Barberêche in the canton of Friborg until May 2011 , and since then in Friborg. He has been an honorary citizen of Zeihen since 2007 .


Joseph Deiss began his political career in 1981 as a member of the Grand Council of the Canton of Friborg , which he presided over in 1991. From 1982 to 1996 he was also mayor of Barberêche.

In 1991 Deiss was elected to the National Council. From 1995 to 1996 he was Vice President of the Foreign Affairs Commission. From 1993 to 1996, Joseph Deiss also served as price supervisor in Switzerland. He was then President of the Commission for the Total Revision of the Federal Constitution until 1998 .

In the replacement elections on March 11, 1999 , Deiss was elected to the Federal Council as the successor to Flavio Cotti . He was one of the three official candidates for the CVP, alongside Adalbert Durrer and Remigio Ratti . In the sixth ballot, he prevailed against the unofficial candidate Peter Hess . From 1999 to 2002 he was head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs . In 2003 he moved to the Department of Economics . After his party colleague Ruth Metzler-Arnold was not re-elected in the Federal Council elections in 2003 , Deiss was elected in her place as Federal President for 2004 - a year earlier than planned. On April 27, 2006, Joseph Deiss announced his resignation on July 31, 2006. In the replacement election on June 14, 2006 , the Federal Assembly elected Doris Leuthard to succeed Federal Councilor Joseph Deiss. Deiss was considered a competent and compensatory Federal Councilor. His greatest success as foreign minister was Switzerland's accession to the UN . Most recently, he campaigned for a free trade agreement with the USA and the adoption of the Cassis-de-Dijon principle by the EU .

On June 11, 2010, Joseph Deiss was elected President of the UN General Assembly. He took office at the beginning of the 65th session on September 14, 2010 for a period of one year. On September 12, 2011, he handed over the office to his successor, Nassir Abdulaziz al-Nasser from Qatar .


Joseph Deiss appeared in the American animated series South Park . In the episode “Canada on Strike” (4th episode, 12th season) he leads negotiations with the Canadians. It can be seen for the first time at around 3 minutes and 19 seconds. He is the first Swiss to make it into the series.

Scientific work

  • Manuel d'économie politique , with Danielle Meuwly, 1994
  • Initiation à l'économie politique: analyze économique de la Suisse , 1982
  • Economie politique et politique économique de la Suisse , 1979
  • The regional adjustment process and regional monetary policy , 1978
  • La théorie pure des termes de l'échange international , 1971 (doctoral thesis)


Web links

Commons : Joseph Deiss  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Die Südostschweiz Online: Deiss is leaving Bärfischen and moving to the city on May 1st, 2011. Accessed on January 28th, 2013.
  2. Zeihen's honorary citizen Joseph Deiss is President of the UN General Assembly. In:, June 12, 2010.
  3. NZZ Online : Elected to the highest UN office by acclamation on June 12, 2010. Accessed on September 13, 2011.
  4. NZZ Online : Deiss presides over the 65th UN General Assembly on September 15, 2010. Retrieved on July 3, 2011.
  5. Ban Ki Moon: “Deiss did a great job” , in: Schweizer Fernsehen from September 12, 2011
  6. ^ President of the UN General Assembly: Joseph Deiss takes stock , in: Schweizer Fernsehen from September 8, 2011
predecessor Office Successor
Flavio Cotti Member of the Swiss Federal Council
Doris Leuthard