Norbert Götz

Norbert Götz, PhD, is Professor at the School for Historical and Contemporary Studies at the University of Södertörn, Sweden. He has a wide range of interests including political culture, international relations, democracy, welfare state, nationalism, peace and conceptual history, and you can read more about him here. He is also Södertörn University's representative on the board of Reimagining Norden in an Evolving World (ReNEW): An Excellence Hub in Research, Education and Public Outreach funded by Nordforsk of which nordics.info is a part.


Contributions to nordics.info

The Himlastegen - or Heaven Steps - in Katrineholm, Sweden which allowed people to safely cross the railway tracks. Photo: Taken in 1950. From a leaflet in Swedish on folkhem by www.sormlandsmuseum.se.

2019.02.25 | The Quick Read, Norbert Götz, Democracy, Governance, Nation building

Folkhem

Folkhem, literally meaning ‘people’s home’, is a Swedish term for what is otherwise designated as the Swedish welfare state or the Swedish model. It is even used and discussed in the context of the Nordic welfare state or the Nordic political model, and related ideas are prominent throughout the region (e.g. folkelighed, i.e. popular culture, in…

Dag Hammarskjöld, the second Secretary General of the United Nations in front of its headquarters.

2019.02.22 | The Quick Read, Norbert Götz, Globalisation

United Nations and the Nordic countries

The principles and aims of the United Nations resonate in the Nordic countries, which are small welfare states with an appreciation of international law, solidarity and multilateral problem-solving. From the time of the League of Nations (the precursor to the United Nations) to the 1990s, the Nordic region developed and operated a caucusing and…

The premises of the independent social research foundation FAFO, Borggata 2b, Oslo, Norway. FAFO helped to secretly organise the talks preceding the Oslo Accords. Photo: FAFO

2019.02.22 | The Quick Read, Norbert Götz, Globalisation

Internationalism and the Nordic countries

The internationalism of the Nordic countries is characterised by a general commitment to international institutions and law, agenda-setting and bridge-building between North and South, East and West alike. The Nordic countries traditionally provide high levels of development aid. These and other characteristics have elicited diverse responses,…

The Løgting or Faroese parliament is considered the oldest parliment in the world. It is mentioned in the saga ‘Færeyingasaga’ written in Iceland in around the year 1200, but historians estimate that the origin of the Faroese Løgting can be traced as far back as shortly after the first Norse settlement (landnam) of the Faroes in the year 800. The building is from 1856.

2019.02.21 | The Quick Read, Norbert Götz, Governance, Nation building, Democracy

Parliamentary culture in the Nordic countries

The Nordic countries have a particular parliamentary culture characterised by consensus and working across party lines. Their parliaments remain influential institutions considering the general trend towards greater executive power. The principles of parliamentary government and universal suffrage were introduced comparatively early in Norden. The…

It is often argued that a smothering state or the market forces of neoliberalism stifle civil society. Residents of Nordic countries remain active, however, although civil society organisations have changed considerably since the hey-day of 'movements' in the nineteenth century. Photo: clothes collection for refugees, Copenhagen Central Station in September, 2015.

2019.02.21 | Article, Norbert Götz, Culture, Democracy

Civil society in the Nordics

The Nordic experience is characterised by an upward spiral of development resulting from a close interconnection between a strong civil society and a strong state. The term ‘civil society’ was initially used in the Nordic countries as an alien concept to denote antagonism to the dominance of the welfare state. From the late 1990s, civil society…

Input from labour market organisations and other interest groups can be fed into decision making from the local to the national level. Photo: Benjamin Child, Unsplash.

2019.02.21 | Article, Norbert Götz, Governance, Public policy, Democracy

Corporatism and the Nordic countries

Corporatism is about the influence of organisations and interest groups on policy making. The Nordic countries are societies with strong interest groups, acknowledged and privileged by the state, that wield considerable influence on policy making and implementation. Corporatism, or neo-corporatism, is found within industrial relations, but is also…

A Danish steamer is painted with the mark of neutrality during the First World War. Photo: The Danish Royal Library.

2019.02.06 | The Quick Read, Norbert Götz, Reputation, Globalisation

Neutrality and the Nordic countries

A tendency towards neutrality during conflicts exists in all the Nordic countries, although Sweden was the only Nordic country that remained (more or less) neutral during the Second World War and the Cold War. Finland has also strived for a policy of neutrality during and after the Cold War. Denmark and Norway have not permitted NATO bases and…