Parliaments, Citizens and Democracy in Scandinavia
A Comparative Audit
Routledge – 2014 – 208 pages
Series: Library of Legislative Studies
This book seeks to provide a systematic and systematically comparative evaluation of the links between parliaments, parliamentarians and citizens in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland. It provides critical insights not only into the dynamics of representative democracy but also into the reputation of the Scandinavian states for transparent decision-making.
Based on the premise that good democratic practice involves a parliament that is open and responsive to the citizenry, the primary aim of the book is to examine the extent to which parliamentary practice in Scandinavia is democratic. A rudimentary legislative audit is conducted in which the relationship between parliament and citizens is assessed with respect to three core values – visibility, accessibility and permeability. The approach is comparative throughout and based on a wide range of documentary, statistical and interview material.
This book will be of interest to students and scholars of Nordic politics, legislative studies and comparative politics.
1. Introduction 2. The Analytical Framework 3. The Nordic Parliaments in Comparative Perspective 4. Parliamentarians as Trustees and Trust in Parliament 5. The visibility of the parliaments to the people 6. Accessing Parliament 7. Policy Power to the People? 8. The Changing Nature of Representation? 9. Conclusions
David Arter and Tapio Raunio are Professors of Politics in the School of Management at the University of Tampere, Finland.