Governing People's Homes: Organizing Housing Associatively in Scandinavia

Anker Brink Lund, Søren Christensen

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportBidrag til bog/antologiForskningpeer review


The chapter discusses how housing has become politically positioned as a pillar under Nordic welfare states. Based on a critical reading of official policy documents and empirical research in the field, it is argued that voluntary and incorporated associations play formative, but underrated and underexplored, roles in processes of associative governance. Illustrated by examples from Denmark, Sweden, and (to a lesser extent) Norway, it is demonstrated how self-organized housing associations, in alliances and conflicts with other interest groups, compete for government recognition and political legitimacy circa 1850–1945. In so doing, associative governance filled gaps left open by the demolition of traditional rural corporatism. After 1945, representative peak organizations were incorporated by governments, mediating a neo-corporatist order of integrative community planning. From the mid-1980s onward, deregulation left more room for market-driven forces, which resulted in dissociated enclaves situated within less integrated communities. This development has challenged the idealistic premises of Folkhemmet, a political metaphor of society understood as a home for all kinds of people. Accordingly, the unitary housing pillar under the Nordic welfare model has become markedly wobbly, resulting in social exclusion, self-segmentation and speculative financialization behavior, and markedly less associative governance of the representative and incorporated kind.
TitelAssociative Governance in Scandinavia : Organizing Societies by “Combining Together”
RedaktørerAnker Brink Lund, Haldor Byrkjeflot, Søren Christensen
Antal sider37
ISBN (Trykt)9781032466743, 9781032466767
ISBN (Elektronisk)9781003382775
StatusUdgivet - 2024
NavnNordic Studies in a Global Context