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Religion and culture in Europe: law, policies and realities

Abstract

Is religion simply a part of culture? Can religious diversity be managed as a subset of intercultural diversity? This article explores intercultural dialogue and its relationship to “religion’ in the policies, documents and debates of the European Community. The argument is advanced that religious realities and concerns are misconstrued when religion is subsumed into culture. Religion needs to be historically and conceptually rethought and that for cultural and religious diversities to be skillfully managed in the interests of social solidarity and positive intercommunal relations both need to be addressed discretely and in tandem.

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Civil Society and Democratic Socialization in Burundi. Return to an Ambiguous Complicity

Abstract

Without questioning the binomial Civil Society-Democracy, this study shows that with regard to the disturbed past of Burundi, the Civil Society cannot be the place to learn about values of democracy. The reflection highlights an institution whose agents, under the socio-financial and politico-ideological pressure, are not beyond the realm in which political power and other socioeconomic bonuses are gained.

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Editorial
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The Feeling of Insecurity Among the Elderly: Between Environmental Changes and Individual Fragility

Abstract

The literature frequently argues that the feeling of insecurity might be greater among the elderly than in other population groups. Based on results of a qualitative study which consisted of 51 interviews with people aged between 70 and 92 years old, this paper proposes to approach the feeling of insecurity from the actors’ perspective. This allows us to take into account the perception of the elderly in order to dispose of the age-related vision that tends to erase the effects of fragility due to aging.

Open access
A New Typology to Describe the Regional Differences in Swiss Labor Markets

Abstract

The analysis of the Swiss labor market poses a methodological challenge. On the one hand, Switzerland is too diversified to be analyzed as a single socio-economic space. On the other hand, a high level of territorial fragmentation makes the use of administrative divisions methodologically weak. In this paper, we classify Swiss cantons into three types of labor markets: attractive, multicenter, and marginal. Our typology is based on a wide range of economic and labor market parameters, and can be a ready-to-use tool for further researches.

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On the Construction of 24 Hours Care for the Elderly in the Swiss Media

Abstract

This article analyses Swiss media coverage of 24 hours care between 2003 and 2013. Based on a discourse analysis we observe that the dominant media discourse speaks of a booming market that criticises agencies, victimises carers and idealises home care. In our discussion we analyse these results with a focus on the so-called blind spots of this media discourse. In particular, we challenge the claim of a boom in 24h care, shed light on the negative aspects of home care, and address the ignored responsibility of the family as employer.

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Slowed Down Economisation: The Persistence of Alternative Trade Organisations

Abstract

Have Swiss Alternative Trade Organizations (ATOs) valorized economic aspects at the expense of their social mission for the longer term? From a historical perspective (1974–2013), this article shows how these social enterprises have maintained their social purpose and inhibited the course of organizational economization. We identify three deceleration strategies: involving volunteers, direct trading partnerships with producers, focusing on the sales niche. The article shows how and why economization processes are malleable and not inevitable.

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Vocational Education and Training, Vocational Baccalaureate or Academic High School? An Empirical Analysis of Social Selective Transitions to Upper Secondary Education in the German-Speaking Part of Switzerland

Abstract

We analyze the educational decision at the end of compulsory schooling in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. In order to reveal the social selectivity of this decision we adapted the theory of subjectively expected utility to the Swiss context. We apply and test an innovative model with panel data. The variation of achievement and educational decision across social classes largely explains the selectivity of this transition.

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Who Is Afraid of Skilled Migrants From Europe? Exploring Support for Immigration Control in Switzerland

Abstract

The paper analyses the role of economic and cultural threat in exploring support for immigration control in Switzerland. A factorial survey experiment enables us to look into different migrant characteristics. Results show more support for immigration control for Eastern Europeans and low-skilled migrants. However, German migrants do not gain acceptance due to being highly skilled, and their willingness to adapt culturally is crucial for native Swiss with a high level of national pride.

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Do Opposites Attract? Educational Assortative Mating and Dynamics of Wage Homogamy in Switzerland, 1992–2014

Abstract

This paper addresses homogamy and assortative mating in Switzerland. The empirical analysis monitors trends for education and hourly wages using the Swiss Labour Force Survey and the Swiss Household Panel. The analysis disentangles the effects of educational expansion from mating patterns and incorporates not only couples, but also singles. Results show an increasing level of assortative mating both for education and for wages. For wage homogamy, selection is more important than adaptation.

Open access