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Blue- vs. White-Collar Families: Influence on Public Policy in Sweden
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

One person - one vote; on Election Day in a representative democracy, everyone with the right to vote is equal. However, this occurs in Sweden once every four years. Between those occasions, we cannot be certain that political influence is equal until this has been tested. In this thesis, I will investigate whether Swedish democracy is responding to blue- and white-collar families equally. Do they have equal influence over public policy? And what consequences do the result have for some theories of democracy? With quantitative research, by replicating large parts of the research done by Martin Gilens and his research team, this thesis will be able to test if political influence is equal between these two groups. This allows us to test some of the theories and earlier research conclusions of Swedish democracy. No one, that I am aware of, has published something regarding this type of research in Sweden before.

Gilens & Page’s (2014) research found that in the United States, economic elites and interest groups had substantial influence on public policy whereas average citizens had little or none - confirming economic elite domination and biased pluralism theories. By analysing 182 policy proposals, I find no clear proof, but strong indications that white- collar families have more influence on policy-making than blue-collar families. Future research would most likely be able to draw more confident conclusions if there was a greater data sample. If these indications are correct, then this has implications for some theories of American and Swedish democracy. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 60 p.
Keyword [en]
Blue-collar, white-collar, democracy, influence
National Category
Political Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-287488OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-287488DiVA: diva2:922846
Subject / course
Political Science
Educational program
Bachelor Programme in Political Science
2015-06-04, Schefferusrummet, Statsvetenskapliga Institutionen, Gamla torget 6, Uppsala, 11:04 (Swedish)
Available from: 2016-05-19 Created: 2016-04-25 Last updated: 2016-05-19Bibliographically approved

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