Social Democratic Asylum Policy: The Biopolitics of Asylum Policy and the Loss of Social Democratic Identity

Sune Maribo Bjerregaard

Student thesis: Master thesis


This thesis is a discourse analysis which utilizes biopolitics and Complex Responsive Process theory, to identify favorable organizational outcome, as tightening’s to asylum policy are made. Specifically it analyzes the discourses of significant actors and the outcome of the following vote for Legislation L87. L87 is a set of laws which was voted for by the Social Democrats and put into place for the purpose of limiting the inflow of asylum seekers, by limiting their rights. This legislation was considered by many voters as well as members of the Social Democrats, to be incompatible with the traditional social democratic values. However the party leadership decided to vote for the legislation, despite strong resistance towards it. Social Democrats; Mette Frederiksen (party leader) and Henrik Sass Larsen (Leader of the social democratic group) explained the sense making behind their support for L87, in the two interviews which is used as data in the thesis. Meanwhile, former Social Democrat Pernille Schnoor explains her sense making for leaving the Social Democratic party, as a consequence of an excluding strategy of the leadership, of those who disagree with their policies, as well as their decision to vote for L87. A biopolitical analysis of the reasoning behind L87 has been conducted and shows the strengths of L87 and its capabilities as a tool of control, when attempting to affect the flow of immigration. Furthermore the organizational impact of L87 and the Social Democrats communication strategy has been critically analyzed through the optics of Pernille Schnoor using Complex Responsive Process Theory.

EducationsMSc in Strategy, Organization and Leadership, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2016
Number of pages85
SupervisorsOle Thyssen