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The Swedish Discourse on Sustainable Regional Development: Consolidating the post-political condition
Institutionen Stad och land, SLU.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Urban Planning and Environment, Urban and Regional Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9284-5710
2011 (English)In: International Planning Studies, ISSN 1356-3475, E-ISSN 1469-9265, Vol. 16, no 2, 169-187 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper presents the results of an investigation into how sustainable development was introduced as a new objective for regional development policy in Sweden. Specific attention is given to the basic assumptions underlying the shaping of sustainable regional development (SRD) as a new policy goal in the Swedish regional development policy arena, which is a main arena for regional planning in Sweden. The overall aim is to chart and critically assess official Swedish SRD policy discourse using an analytical approach inspired by Foucauldian discourse analysis; that is, targeting both text and practice through examination of policy documents and institutional settings. Of key interest are the norms and power relations produced and reproduced through the discourse. In the study, holism, equilibrium and consensus are identified as key storylines of the Swedish SRD discourse. In essence, our findings indicate a further (re)production and consolidation of a post-political approach that provides no input to developing any alternative trajectory for society. The concluding discussion concerns the need to challenge the post-political condition and reassert the political and ideological content of the aims and visions for SRD, as well as for development in general.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Routledge, 2011. Vol. 16, no 2, 169-187 p.
Keyword [en]
sustainable development, regional development, discourse, post-politics
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-79858DOI: 10.1080/13563475.2011.561062ScopusID: 2-s2.0-79957632578OAI: diva2:496129
QC 20120214Available from: 2012-02-09 Created: 2012-02-09 Last updated: 2012-02-14Bibliographically approved

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