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Study: Swiss want to have cake and eat it too

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Study: Swiss want to have cake and eat it too
File photo: Credit Suisse
11:49 CEST+02:00
While nearly all Swiss (96 percent) would not tolerate their partner having an affair, nearly a quarter (24 percent) have had an affair themselves.

And though 59 percent of Swiss nationals say the environment is important to them, they don’t live an eco-friendly lifestyle themselves.

Those are just some of the findings in a new study by research institute Sotomo, released on Monday, which shows the Swiss not only want to have their cake but eat it too.

The study, commissioned by health insurer KTP, questioned 16,600 readers of daily papers Le Matin and Blick on various facets of life to examine the difference between desire and reality.

Respondents were asked about the importance of family versus career, their preference for living in the countryside or city, environmental awareness and relationship expectations.

And the results revealed the Swiss to be a contradictory – and sometimes hypocritical – bunch.

“A majority of respondents (59 percent) estimated environmental awareness as important or very important, but do not want to renounce pleasure and consumption,” said Sotomo in a statement.

Resource-intensive behaviour such as commuting or flying frequently was just as widespread among the environmentally conscious, it said.

The finding backs up recent comments by a WWF spokeswoman who said the Swiss fly far more than their European neighbours.

Sotomo's survey also found that while two-thirds of respondents said living in a “rural idyll” was important to them, most also wanted to be close to their workplace.

“The desire for both... cannot always be realized in everyday life,” said the report.

“What’s more, in the long term one thing comes at the expense of the other,” it added, blaming the desire for rural-but-connected living for contributing to urban sprawl that impinges on the countryside.

In terms of relationships, 67 percent expected “absolute loyalty” from their partner while only 47 percent would hold themselves to the same standard.

“The evaluation shows that Swiss people often want both,” said the report.

“They love freedom, but also security. They consider environmental sustainability as important but they do not want to do without enjoyment.”

“Fathers want to spend more time with their families... at the same time they increase their workload and invest in their career,” it added.

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