Public affairs

Political parties, associations, opinion leaders and the people's opinion

your situation

Political decisions are becoming increasingly complex and, hence, increasingly challenging to convey to the electorate. Managing stakeholders, population groups affected by the referendum, political parties and associations requires foresighted planning as well asflawless implementation.

Referendum campaigns may take a surprising turn of events. Those who misjudge the prevailing mood of the people, or don't have a feel for it, will find it difficult to be taken seriously by the electorate. Successful campaigns stay flexible while remaining true to their essence; a constantly evolving environment requires swift but carefully considered action.

Get across complex referendum issues and proposed legislations

our offer

Our extensive network among politicians, associations, businesses and the community enables us to identify early on what each stakeholder group perceives to be the consequences of the referendum and thus make out possible stumbling blocks ahead of time. We understand the decision-shaping and decision-making processes, establish links with relevant stakeholder groups, we have the know-how and master the tools of the trade to design and implement your campaign.

Together, we will identify your core messages; we will break down the complexity of the issue up for vote and make it understood, we will develop convincing arguments and form alliances. We will prepare you for interviews, discussions and debates, we will handle your media activities, and we will monitor the sentiments in social media. 

With joint efforts, we will succeed in bringing your cause to fruition: from the first idea through to a positive political outcome.


Head Word: Public Affairs

A company's activities to build and nurture relationships and goodwill with politicians, governments, associations and other opinion makers are termed public affairs (PA). It is often considered to be a branch of public relations (PR)

While lobbying – the act of providing pertinent information to office holders and regulators with the aim to influence legislators –  is a prominent aspect of public affairs, strategy planning, research on issues, topics and networks, as well as acting as a political advisor are the primary roles of a public affairs practitioner.

Companies, investors, associations, charities, and stakeholder groups with a particular interest in regulation and legislation are among the top users of public affairs services.


Mandates in public affairs and campaigns

Make the message clear – make yourself understood

Campaigns in the political world

Klinik Gut Group

since 2013 runs public affairs for the privately owned clinic conglomerate (two clinics and five orthopaedic practices) with a special focus on the political processes associated with building projects.

For the new «Klinik Gut» orthopaedic Clinic in the town of Fläsch, developed the communications strategy and led the implementation. Numerous information events and municipal assemblies started the campaign, followed by extensive media work which culminated in the inaugural press conference and a series of events gathering a total of more than 3.000 visitors – from potential patients to the canton’s minister of health and a member of Liechtenstein’s royal family.

A new orthopaedic clinic combined with a health hotel is planned in St. Moritz.

The project requires a modification of the town's land use and urban planning. Following a planning phase that spread over many years, in fall of 2015, the draft law was presented to the city's legislative body, which in turn paved the way for the mandatory public referendum. Following highly intensive campaigning, the public vote came out clearly in favour of the proposed legislation. 

Christian Gartmann developed and implemented the entire referendum campaign for the group and the investor ITW. A comprehensive stakeholder relations campaign was set up to that effect, which was perfectly tailored to the group and the requirements of the region and involved political parties, associations and regional opinion leaders. After a clear YES from the people, the project is now being contended on legal grounds. 

> Klinik Gut AG, St. Moritz
> ITW Gruppe, Balzers

Graubünden 2022: candidacy for the Olympic Games


The Canton of Grisons (Graubünden) was meant to host the 2022 Olympic Winter Games. Conceived as a roadshow for dialogue, the campaign ahead of the referendum became the largest campaign a cantonal referendum in Switzerland had ever seen.

Christian Gartmann was commissioned to run the association's communications & marketing operations and acted as its spokesperson. More than 200 information events and some two dozen cantonal and national media conferences were held during the referendum campaign. An end was put to the project in March 2013 by the electorate vote in a referendum not to pursue the candidacy.

Association Graubünden 2022 (remaining Facebook page - in German)

Grace Hotels Group

since 2014

The St. Moritz Hotel La Margna is undergoing extensive renovations and extensions and is due to re-open as the boutique hotel 'Grace St. Moritz' in 2019. As Swiss spokesperson of the project, Christian Gartmann runs public affairs and communications on behalf of the Grace Hotels Group.

Communication to stakeholders took centre stage ahead of the decisions on the change of the land use plan by the city's parliament and voters – helping to clinch a unanimous vote of the members of parliament and a yes-vote of 89% by the people of St. Moritz in the referendum.

> Grace Hotels Group
> Press release after the public referendum 

Engadin St. Moritz Mountains

since 2015

Consistently focussing on promising business, Engadin St. Moritz Mountains secures its earning power and the preservation of its extensive assets in mountain cableways and associated infrastructure. The mountain cableway operator is morphing into a leading provider of mountain adventures. In the process of its strategic reorientation, the company sold off two of its mountain cableways and acquired a new cableway in exchange. advises the board of directors and the management board in communications and public affairs on the implementation of the new corporate strategy.


> Engadin St. Moritz Mountains Ltd

Olympic ski jumping hill St. Moritz


The 'Association Olympic ski jump' commissioned Christian Gartmann to run an information and referendum campaign to rally support for a rezoning and credit needed to build new ski jumping facilities. The promoters wanted for St. Moritz to, once again, become an international training and competition centre for ski jumping. The intention was to replace the old Olympic ski jumping hill with a modern K107 ski jump that would regularly host World Cup competitions. 

Following an intensive and emotional campaign, the draft law was adopted by the people with a clear majority. A looming cost overrun later caused the project to fail, and the ski jump was not built.

> Alpina Ski Club St. Moritz

District "Upper Engadin"


Consulting, outlining, planning and leading information and discussion events in the Upper Engadin on proposed legislation for a new nursing home on behalf of the District Upper Engadin.

> Upper Engadin District (Website in German only)

Municipal election campaign


Advising three liberal candidates at elections into the town parliament–one standing for re-election, two standing for the first time. Establishing decisive advantages and candidate profiles, formulating messages, media work, letters to the editor.

All three candidates were elected to the municipal legislative body.


Municipal Communication


Christian Gartmann advised a municipality on information of the public about a significant long-term building project with import beyond the region. Following a stakeholder analysis, a concept was devolped and preparation works of implementation were initiated.

The construction project has been delayed due to economic reasons. The start of the building work will not take place in the foreseeable future. 

Municipality, Graubünden/Grisons, Switzerland


Cantonal election campaign


Advising a liberal candidate on his first candidacy at cantonal level. Hand in hand with the candidate, Christian Gartmann singled out differentiating traits and established a candidate profile, formulated the messages, undertook media work and prepared letters to the editor.

The candidate was elected into the cantonal parliament with a very good result.

In the fall of 2016, six political parties in the Upper Engadin initiated a series of information and discussion events on political issues that are relevant to the entire region. Christian Gartmann developed the format of the talks, launched and promoted the talk series in regional media, and hosted the first event in the series.

Political parties in the Upper Engadin: BDP, CVP, FDP, Glista Libra, SP, SVP

Political parties of the 'Maloja Region'