An important goal of the Alliance Against Racial Profiling is to research and document the racial profiling and other forms of structural racism in Switzerland, in order to make them easier to understand.

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From 2016 to 2019, we worked with a research team of nine academics and activists on a study of racial profiling In Switzerland. The group included BIPoC who have been victims of discriminatory police stops and white people with and without migration history. With this study, we documented peoples’ experiences with and the effects of racial profiling, as well as how to deal with it. The goal was to make the effects of these discriminatory police stops visible to the public. The evaluation of our research was published in 2019. It also resulted in various publications on "Racial Profiling und Raumpraktiken" (racial profiling and spatial practices), on the "Intersektionalität rassistischer Polizeipraktiken" (intersectionality of racist police practices), and -- in English -- on the "Effects of Racial Profiling" and the “Infastructure of Solidarity”.

The background of the study was the realization that, although there are individual reports on discriminatory controls in the media and from counseling centers and community organizations, comprehensive documentation of experiences with racial profiling has been lacking. This gap became particularly clear in the context of the criminal proceedings against Mohamed Wa Baile, because the police and some politicians made statements asserting that racial profiling is insignificant or even non-existent. Therefore, we saw the need for a compilation of data and analysis that makes clear the dimension, effects and problems of racial profiling in Switzerland.

So far, this goal has been pursued on two levels:

  • First, a collaborative research group conducted a broad-based interview study with individuals affected by racial profiling;
  • Second, the trial-monitoring group documented court hearings attended by the Alliance and examined them for structural racism.

Effects of racial profiling


This paper addresses the effects and consequences of police checks in Swiss cities. In our participatory and collaborative research, we focus on the perspectives of those for whom racial profiling is part of everyday life. Using a theoretical perspective of subjectivation, we draw on thirty qualitative interviews with members of racialized minorities.


Study on Racial Profiling


Racial profiling is a discriminatory and unlawful police practice that receives little public attention. The study of the Collaborative Research Group Racial Profiling focuses on people in Switzerland for whom racist police checks are part of everyday life. They are all affected by similar forms of criminalization, but are also subject to specific police practices - depending on gender, residence status, nationality and socio-economic status. In addition to the concrete experiences, the consequences and effects of the controls for those controlled, the affected communities and society are also discussed. The report also discusses various tactics for dealing with the constant danger of being targeted by the police, as well as strategies for defending oneself individually and collectively against this racist practice. 

Evaluation Report (PDF)

"I am lucky to be alive"


"I am lucky to be alive".
International Racial Profiling in Switzerland - Wilson A. wants to hold racist officials accountable