The Last Geneva Observer Briefing

Today was our last Geneva Observer Briefing. Four and a half years since we published our first piece and ten months after our move to a reader-funded model, our diminished financial resources have unfortunately made it impossible for us to continue bringing you our exclusive stories and analysis. 

Last year’s transition from a free model to a subscriber-based one, after losing funding from two foundations, proved challenging. We embraced the risks wholeheartedly, as readers’ subscriptions are the best guarantee of complete editorial independence. To our paying subscribers and those who have generously donated to The G|O, we extend our deepest thanks. Your trust and support have been inspiring. Like us, you believe holding international organizations and other global actors to account while also recognizing their achievements, and shedding light on how the multilateral system endures under unprecedented stress was a worthwhile and necessary journalistic effort. But in the end, unfortunately, the financial math just didn’t add up.

Launching The Geneva Observer, publishing over 180 weekly Briefings and 800 stories with a limited budget, has been an exciting journalistic adventure for me and our small team: From the onset, Brazilian journalist and senior writer Jamil Chade brought an important Global South perspective to our work. Regular contributor Stephanie Nebehay’s unmatched knowledge of International Geneva informed her rigorous reporting focusing on human rights. Daniel Warner, our in-house op-ed contributor, kept challenging us with his stimulating essays. Dan Wheeler, our faithful editor, became a master at spotting the odd formulations of our non-English mother tongues and helped to make our often-complex stories compelling. Our researcher David Jenny was a magician at finding phone numbers, email addresses and documents at warp speed. To all of them, my enduring thanks and recognition. I am extremely proud of our team’s achievements over the past four years. Thank you, our readers, for having been part of our community.

So, it’s time to move on. New projects are calling. For me, a much-delayed book is in the writing. In the next few weeks, I will also start publishing a newsletter on the US presidential elections for our French-speaking readers with Le Temps’ Stéphane Bussard. It will be a serialized sequel to our 2016 book #Trump: De la démagogie en Amérique. Stay tuned.

Wishing you all the best,


Philippe Mottaz