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Liberalization without Retrenchment

PublikationArtikel (med peer review)
Andreas Bergh, Ekonomisk frihet, Företagandets villkor, Gissur Ó. Erlingsson, Liberalisering, Monopol, Pragmatism, Välfärd

Sammanfattning

In 1980, Sweden was a highly regulated economy with several state monopolies and low levels of economic freedom. Less than twenty years later, liberal reforms turned Sweden into one of the world’s most open economies with a remarkable increase in economic freedom. While there is resilience when it comes to high levels of taxes and expenditure shares of GDP, there has been a profound restructuring of Sweden’s economy in the 1980s and 1990s that previous studies have under-estimated. Furthermore, the degree of political consensus is striking, both regarding the welfare state expansions that characterized Sweden up to 1980, as well as the subsequent liberalizations. Since established theories have difficulties explaining institutional change, this article seeks to understand how the Swedish style of policy making produced this surprising political consensus on liberal reforms. It highlights the importance of three complementary factors: policy making in Sweden has always been influenced by, and intimately connected to, social science; government commissions have functioned as ‘early warning systems’, pointing out future challenges and creating a common way to perceive problems; and, as a consequence, political consensus has evolved as a feature of Swedish style of policy making. The approach to policy making has been rationalistic, technocratic and pragmatic. The article concludes that the Swedish style of policy making not only explains the period of welfare state expansion – it is also applicable to the intense reform period of the 1980s and 1990s.

Related content: Working Paper No. 110

Bergh, A. & Erlingsson, G.Ó. (2009). ”Liberalization without Retrenchment: Understanding the Consensus on Swedish Welfare State Reforms.”Scandinavian Political Studies, 32(1): 71-93.


Liknande innehåll

Municipally Owned Enterprises as Danger Zones for Corruption? How Politicians Having Feet in Two Camps May Undermine Conditions for Accountability
Artikel (med peer review)Publikation
Bergh, A., Erlingsson, G., Gustafsson, A. & Wittberg, E.
Publiceringsår

2019

Publicerat i
Sammanfattning

The market-inspired reforms of New Public Management have been particularly pronounced in Swedish local government. Notably, municipally owned enterprises (MOEs) have rapidly grown in numbers. Principal-agent theory gives rise to the hypothesis that the massive introduction of MOEs has impacted negatively on the conditions for accountability in Swedish local government. To study this, social network analysis was employed in mapping networks for 223 MOEs in 11 strategically chosen municipalities, covering a total of 732 politicians. The analysis reveals substantial overlaps between principals (representatives of the ultimate stakeholders, citizens) and agents (the boards of the MOEs). Hence, corporatization of public services seems to imply worrisome entanglements between the politicians who are set to steer, govern, and oversee MOEs on the one hand, and the board members of MOEs on the other. The increasing numbers of MOEs may therefore have adverse effects on accountability in important and growing parts of Swedish local government.

Assessing the interplay between crowdfunding and sustainability in social media
Artikel (med peer review)Publikation
Laurell, C., Sandström, C. & Suseno, Y.
Publiceringsår

2019

Sammanfattning

This paper aims to assess the degree to which sustainability-oriented dimensions are integrated within the public discourse on crowdfunding in social media. Utilizing Social Media Analytics (SMA), we track discussions on crowdfunding in user-generated content published in social media. Based on an empirical material of 141,754 user-generated content, we identify 308 entries (0.21 percent) explicitly or implicitly relating to sustainability and 80 percent of these 308 entries came from professional actors. In this material, 37 sustainability-oriented campaigns are identified and 26 of them (70 percent) received one entry. Taken together, this paper adds to previous literature by assessing and describing the seemingly minor role played by social media with regards to the interplay between crowdfunding and sustainability.

Migration and Occupational Careers: The Static and Dynamic Urban Wage Premium by Education and City Size
Artikel (med peer review)Publikation
Korpi, M. & Clark, W.A.V.
Publiceringsår

2019

Sammanfattning

Using matched employer-employee full population data on regional migrants in Sweden, this paper addresses the question whether the urban wage premium, and ‘thick’ labour market matching effects, are to be found across all educational groups, and whether the population threshold for these types of effects varies by educational category. Estimating initial wages, average wage level and wage growth 2001-2009, we find similar wage premiums for all workers in the three largest metropolitan areas, but that there are distinct population thresholds for these type of effects, regardless of educational background. However, job search behaviour as explaining dynamic effects over time seems to pertain mostly to those with higher education.
Related content: Working Paper No. 256

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