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How Should Local Government Be Organized?: Reflections from a Swedish Perspective
Centrum för kommunstrategiska studier, Linköpings universitet.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
2013 (English)In: Local Government Studies, ISSN 0300-3930, Vol. 39, no 1, 22-46 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Two main arguments are presented in this article. First, when alternatives for the future design of local government are debated, a government needs to address two basic issues simultaneously: (a) ’how big (and hence how many) municipalities ought the political system have?’, and (b) ’how strong and well secured ought the principle of local self-government be in the constitution?’ Second, by using these two questions as guides for our analysis, we argue that there are instrumental as well as substantial reasons to guarantee a strong local self-government in the constitution. However, such a reform needs to be complemented by a politically neutral body of regulations that, under given conditions, secures geographically concentrated minorities a right to secede. Although we use the Swedish case as the empirical base for the discussion, our analysis has bearing on recent developments in e.g. the other Nordic countries and England, where amalgamations at the local level have been on the agenda throughout the past decade. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Abingdon: Routledge, 2013. Vol. 39, no 1, 22-46 p.
Keyword [en]
local government, local democracy, local autonomy, municipality structure, vertical diffusion of power
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
Research subject
Political Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-191002DOI: 10.1080/03003930.2012.744967ISI: 000315582200002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-191002DiVA: diva2:584658
Available from: 2013-01-09 Created: 2013-01-09 Last updated: 2013-04-09Bibliographically approved

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Publisher's full texthttp://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03003930.2012.744967

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Ödalen, Jörgen
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