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The Origins and Myths of the Swedish Model of Workplace Democracy

Hedin, Astrid LU (2015) In Contemporary European History 24(1).
Abstract
In 1976 Sweden adopted a law on workplace democracy, presented by the Social Democratic government as the ‘reform of the century’. What can the reform tell us about the history of the Swedish Model and how it was revised during the early 1970s under the prime minister, Olof Palme? This article compares four grand narratives of the development of welfare states, viewing dominant narratives of the Swedish Model as influential myths in their own right. The article argues that despite its global reputation as a hallmark of ‘democratic socialism’, the Swedish workplace democracy reform was a broad cross-class compromise, in the wake of a pan-European wave of similarly labelled reforms. Furthermore, the reform served to protect workplaces... (More)
In 1976 Sweden adopted a law on workplace democracy, presented by the Social Democratic government as the ‘reform of the century’. What can the reform tell us about the history of the Swedish Model and how it was revised during the early 1970s under the prime minister, Olof Palme? This article compares four grand narratives of the development of welfare states, viewing dominant narratives of the Swedish Model as influential myths in their own right. The article argues that despite its global reputation as a hallmark of ‘democratic socialism’, the Swedish workplace democracy reform was a broad cross-class compromise, in the wake of a pan-European wave of similarly labelled reforms. Furthermore, the reform served to protect workplaces against Communist activism. The argument builds on the internal meeting protocols of the board and executive committee of the Swedish Social Democratic Party. (Less)
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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Contemporary European History
volume
24
issue
1
publisher
Cambridge University Press
external identifiers
  • scopus:84921418772
ISSN
0960-7773
DOI
10.1017/S0960777314000423
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
0c4e207d-b5e9-49fc-ac65-39084255d9ce
date added to LUP
2016-11-28 11:56:46
date last changed
2017-01-01 08:40:59
@article{0c4e207d-b5e9-49fc-ac65-39084255d9ce,
  abstract     = {In 1976 Sweden adopted a law on workplace democracy, presented by the Social Democratic government as the ‘reform of the century’. What can the reform tell us about the history of the Swedish Model and how it was revised during the early 1970s under the prime minister, Olof Palme? This article compares four grand narratives of the development of welfare states, viewing dominant narratives of the Swedish Model as influential myths in their own right. The article argues that despite its global reputation as a hallmark of ‘democratic socialism’, the Swedish workplace democracy reform was a broad cross-class compromise, in the wake of a pan-European wave of similarly labelled reforms. Furthermore, the reform served to protect workplaces against Communist activism. The argument builds on the internal meeting protocols of the board and executive committee of the Swedish Social Democratic Party.},
  author       = {Hedin, Astrid},
  issn         = {0960-7773},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {01},
  number       = {1},
  publisher    = {Cambridge University Press},
  series       = {Contemporary European History},
  title        = {The Origins and Myths of the Swedish Model of Workplace Democracy},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0960777314000423},
  volume       = {24},
  year         = {2015},
}