Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version

Sweden

Is the Future of Foreign Policy Feminist?

Citation:

Thompson, Lyric, and Rachel Clement. 2019. “Is the Future of Foreign Policy Feminist?” Seton Hall Journal of Diplomacy and International Relations 20 (2): 76–94.

Authors: Lyric Thompson, Rachel Clement

Annotation:

Summary:
“In 2014, Sweden's Foreign Minister Margot Wallström took the world by storm when she launched the world's first explicitly feminist foreign policy. The new policy would be a way of doing things differently in Sweden's international affairs, organizing its approach to diplomacy, development, and defense under a 3 Rs framework of women's rights, resources, and representation, the latter of which this journal issue seeks to explore.

“How did this come to be? For Sweden, it was not just the future of diplomacy that was female; it was the past and present as well. Sweden's parliamentary representation has hovered near parity for some time. It has also boasted a long line of female foreign ministers dating back to the 1970s. Thus, there was a strong historical precedent of women's leadership that had normalized female power in such a way as to enable the country to offer something unique to the world: a feminist foreign policy” (Thompson and Clement 2019, 76).

Topics: Development, Feminist Foreign Policy, Governance, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2019

Praise or Critique? Sweden’s Feminist Foreign Policy in the Eyes of its Fellow EU Members

Citation:

Rosén Sundström, Malena, and Ole Elgström. 2019. “Praise or Critique? Sweden’s Feminist Foreign Policy in the Eyes of its Fellow EU Members.” European Politics and Society, September 11. https://doi.org/10.1080/23745118.2019.1661940.

Authors: Malena Rosén Sundström, Ole Elgström

Abstract:

In 2014, the Swedish Government proclaimed that it would pursue a Feminist Foreign Policy (FFP). This initiative illustrates Sweden’s role as a norm entrepreneur, challenging predominant normative frames by enhancing existing gender equality norms. Our article is a first attempt to investigate how other state actors perceive the legitimacy, coherence and effectiveness of this policy innovation. The focus is on the perceptions of diplomatic representatives from other European Union member states. The article is based on a survey and in-depth interviews with officials at member state permanent representations. Our findings demonstrate that it is well-known that Sweden pursues a feminist foreign policy, though knowledge is often superficial. Overall, the FFP is positively perceived. Sweden is generally regarded as a leader in the promotion of gender norms. There are, however, also critical voices. In some countries, the word ‘feminist’ evokes negative reactions. While most respondents think the FFP has had a positive effect on Sweden’s international image, less are convinced that other states will follow suit. The current context, with nationalism and populism on the rise, is not seen as appropriate for pursuing a FFP. Sweden’s success as a norm entrepreneur in this field is thus questioned.

Keywords: feminist foreign policy, sweden, European Union, perceptions, norms

Topics: Feminisms, Feminist Foreign Policy, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Nationalism Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2019

Women and Nuclear Energy: Examining the Gender Divide in Opposition to Nuclear Power Among Swedish Citizens and Politicians

Citation:

Sundström, Aksel, and Aaron M. McCright. 2016. “Women and Nuclear Energy: Examining the Gender Divide in Opposition to Nuclear Power Among Swedish Citizens and Politicians.” Energy Research & Social Science 11 (January): 29–39.

Authors: Aksel Sundström, Aaron M. McCright

Abstract:

Whether or not there will be a ‘renaissance’ of nuclear power in the near future may depend upon the nature of support for this energy source among citizens and elected officials. Continued examination of the predictors of opposition to nuclear power therefore remains quite policy relevant. While the existing literature finds modest but consistent gender differences in attitudes towards nuclear power in the general publics of several Western countries, the robustness of this relationship has seldom been investigated across time or among elected officials. This paper addresses both of these gaps. First, analyzing nationally representative data from the Swedish general public between 1986 and 2011, we confirm that the theoretically expected gender divide in opposition to nuclear power-whereby women report greater opposition than do men-is indeed robust over time. Second, examining data from three recent surveys of elected officials at the local, regional, and national levels in Sweden, we find that female elected officials at each polity level report greater opposition to nuclear power than their male counterparts. Our results are consistent with the health and safety concerns argument, whereby women are less supportive than are men of technologies with considerable perceived health and safety risks.

Keywords: nuclear power, gender, public opinion, politicians

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender Analysis, Health, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2016

Feminist Foreign Policy 3.0: Advancing Ethics and Gender Equality in Global Politics

Citation:

Aggestam, Karin, and Annika Bergman Rosamond. 2019. “Feminist Foreign Policy 3.0: Advancing Ethics and Gender Equality in Global Politics.” SAIS Review of International Affairs 39 (1): 37–48.

Authors: Karin Aggestam, Annika Bergman Rosamond

Abstract:

A growing number of states, including Canada, Norway, Sweden, Australia, and the United Kingdom, have adopted gender- and feminist-informed approaches to their foreign and security policies. Sweden’s feminist foreign policy was launched in 2014 and rests on the idea that gender equality is central to security and foreign policy. This article conducts an analysis of the incremental development of Sweden’s feminist foreign policy. It underlines three pillars that have informed Swedish foreign policy: rights, representation, and resources. The article assesses how these three pillars have been transformed into distinct policy and practice. It makes the following three conclusions. First, Sweden’s feminist foreign policy is distinguished by its working method pertaining to norm change whereby gendered practices and structures in global politics are challenged. Second, from the outset Sweden’s feminist foreign policy has pursued a head-wind agenda, which reflects a readiness to confront contestation in global politics. Third, as a way of tackling resistance and promoting pro-norm equality diffusion a fourth “R” has been advanced, which stands for reality checks and research.

Topics: Feminisms, Feminist Foreign Policy, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Rights, Security Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2019

Flight

"Two young sisters who arrive in Sweden having fled the war in Syria are becoming teenagers in a new world. They try to hold on to the memories of their once beautiful home while struggling to deal with the repercussions of growing up surrounded by war."

Source: https://laurawadha.com/2017/09/30/flight/

Gender and Struggles for Equality in Mining Resistance Movements: Performing Critique against Neoliberal Capitalism in Sweden and Greece

Citation:

Sjöstedt Landén, Angelika, and Marianna Fotaki. 2018. "Gender and Struggles for Equality in Mining Resistance Movements: Performing Critique against Neoliberal Capitalism in Sweden and Greece." Social Inclusion 6 (4): 25-35.

Authors: Angelika Sjöstedt Landén, Marianna Fotaki

Abstract:

This article explores the intersections of gender and centre–periphery relations and calls for theoretical and political involvement in gendered struggles against colonial and capitalist forces across different national contexts. The article raises questions about the possibility of resisting inequality and exploitation arising from capitalist expansion and extraction of natural resources in Sweden and Greece, outside of urban contexts. It does so by highlighting women’s role in protest movements in peripheral places and questioning power relations between centre and periphery. The article also argues that making visible women’s struggles and contributions to protest movements brings about vital knowledge for realizing democratic worlds that do not thrive on the destruction of natural resources and the institutionalization of inequalities.

Keywords: activism, capitalism, extractivism, gender, Greece, mining, neoliberalism, protest, women, sweden

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Intersectionality Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Greece, Sweden

Year: 2018

Re-Politicising the Gender-Security Nexus: Sweden’s Feminist Foreign Policy

Citation:

Aggestam, Karin, and Annika Bergman Rosamond. 2018. "Re-Politicising the Gender-Security Nexus: Sweden's Feminist Foreign Policy." European Review of International Studies 5 (3/2018): 30-48.

Authors: Karin Aggestam, Annika Bergman Rosamond

Abstract:

Sweden’s feminist foreign policy is founded on the broad idea that gender equality is central to security. This article focuses on how the politicisation of this gender-security nexus is discursively articulated and practiced in the case of feminist foreign policy. The problematic is unpacked by analysing the politicisation of the women, peace and security agenda and global gender mainstreaming. To empirically illustrate the gender-security nexus more specifically, we analyse how these politicisation processes are reflected in Sweden’s support for global peace diplomacy and gender protection. The article concludes by offering three final remarks. First, Sweden’s feminist foreign policy is an expression of several, at times competing, forms of political rationality. Second, while the fluctuation between de-politicisation and re-politicisation of security may seem productive in terms of policy outcome it can also create contradictions and ambiguities in regards to feminist foreign policy practice. One such outcome is the tendency to conflate gender and women across a number of de-politicised policy initiatives launched by the Swedish government. Third, the re-politicisation and contestation of the gender-security nexus is likely to increase in the coming decades because of shifting global power configurations in the global world order.

Keywords: feminist foreign policy, re-politicisation, de-politicisation, WPS agenda, gender mainstreaming, peace diplomacy, protection, UNSCR 1325, sweden

Topics: Feminisms, Feminist Foreign Policy, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325 Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2018

A Green Fatwā? Climate Change as a Threat to the Masculinity of Industrial Modernity

Citation:

Anshelm, Jonas, and Martin Hultman. 2014. “A Green Fatwā? Climate Change as a Threat to the Masculinity of Industrial Modernity.” NORMA: International Journal for Masculinity Studies 9 (2): 84–96.

Authors: Jonas Anshelm, Martin Hultman

Abstract:

From the autumn of 2006 and until 2009, climate change was described in Sweden as having apocalyptic dimensions. There was a parliamentary and public consensus that anthropogenic climate change was real and that society needed to take responsibility for lowering greenhouse gas emissions, though a small group of climate sceptics did not agree with the majority of the scientists or the need for drastic changes in the organization of Western societies. This small group, with only one exception, consisted of elderly men with influential positions in academia or large private companies. In this article we discuss how they described themselves as marginalised, banned and oppressed dissidents, forced to speak against a faith-based belief in climate science. They characterised themselves as having strong beliefs in a market society, great mistrust of government regulation and a sturdy belief in engineering and natural science rationality. We contend that climate sceptics in Sweden can be understood as being intertwined with a masculinity of industrial modernity that is on decline. These climate sceptics tried to save an industrial society of which they were a part by defending its values against ecomodern hegemony. This gender analysis of climate scepticism moves beyond the previous research of understanding this discourse as solely an ideologically-based outcry against science and politics, and highlights the recognition of identities, historical structures and emotions.

Keywords: climate change, masculinity studies, climate sceptics, industrial modern masculinity, ecomodern masculinity, discourse analysis

Topics: Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gender Analysis Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2014

Gender Mainstreaming in Transportation: Impact of Management Control

Citation:

Wittbom, Eva. 2011. “Gender Mainstreaming in Transportation: Impact of Management Control.” In Women’s Issues in Transportation: Summary of the 4th International Conference, Vol. 2: Technical Papers, 264-75. Washington, DC: Transportation Research Board of the National Academies.

Author: Eva Wittbom

Abstract:

In international surveys, Sweden is considered to be the locus classicus for gender mainstreaming. At a macro level, the picture is clear, as government directives include specific goals for gender equality and the expectation that public agencies will mainstream gender into their core business. At a micro level, the situation is more complex. Formal governance meets with gendered norms and cultures that are equally strong, but informal, driving forces among civil servants. The question raised here is how the management control system functions under the pressure of mainstreaming gender. With an interpretive approach, research has been conducted to disclose constructions that tend to enable or to hamper gender equality in the practice of management control at a micro level. The evidence stems from a case study of the Swedish Road Administration and the Swedish National Rail Administration. Interviews, observations of meetings, and close reading of documents furnish this paper with data covering the years 2002–2007 with regard to a policy goal of a gender-equal transport system. Applying a gender perspective together with a sociological institutional perspective makes gendered rules, norms, and culture visible. The results show how management control is involved in integration of gender by assimilation and by decoupling, obstructing transformative gender mainstreaming. The administration is busy keeping up the appearance of fulfilling the goal, legitimizing its activities by reporting relative fulfillment in accordance with the rules of the control system, regardless of the relevance connected to the norms of gender equality. The management control system perpetuates a culture in which reliability lies in measurability; therefore, the goal of gender equality results in a quantitative perspective on women and men instead of a qualitative gender perspective on the transport system.

Topics: Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Infrastructure, Transportation Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Sweden

Year: 2011

Integrating Gender Into Transport Planning: From One to Many Tracks

Citation:

Scholten, Christina Lindkvist and Tanja Joelsson, eds. 2019. Integrating Gender Into Transport Planning: From One to Many Tracks. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan.

Authors: Christina Lindkvist Scholten, Tanja Joelsson

Annotation:

Summary:
This edited collection brings together feminist research on transport and planning from different epistemologies, with the intention to contribute to a more holistic transport planning practice. With a feminist perspective on transport policy and planning, the volume insists on the political character of transport planning and policy, and challenges gender-blindness in a policy area that impacts the everyday lives of women, men, girls, and boys. The chapters discuss everyday mobility as an embodied and situated activity in both conceptual and theoretical ways and suggest practical tools for change. The contributions of this collection are threefold: integrating gender research and transport planning, combining quantitative and qualitative gender research perspectives and methods, and highlighting the need to acknowledge the politicization of transport planning and transport practice. (Summary from Palgrave Macmillan)
 
Table of Contents:
1. The Political in Transport and Mobility: Towards a Feminist Analysis of Everyday Mobility and Transport Planning
Tanja Joelsson and Christina Lindkvist Scholten
 
2. Are We Still Not There Yet? Moving Further Along the Gender Highway
Clara Greed
 
3. Travel Choice Reframed: “Deep Distribution” and Gender in Urban Transport
Caren Levy
 
4. Gendered Perspectives on Swedish Transport Policy-Making: An Issue for Gendered Sustainability Too
Lena Smidfelt Rosqvist
 
5. How to Apply Gender Equality Goals in Transport and Infrastructure Planning
Lena Levin and Charlotta Faith-Ell
 
6. Til Work Do Us Part: The Social Fallacy of Long-Distance Commuting
Erika Sandow
 
7. Measuring Mobilities of Care, a Challenge for Transport Agendas
Inés Sánchez Madariaga and Elena Zucchini
 
8. The ‘I’ in Sustainable Planning: Constructions of Users Within Municipal Planning for Sustainable Mobility
Malin Henriksson
 
9. Towards an Intersectional Approach to Men, Masculinities and (Un)sustainable Mobility: The Case of Cycling and Modal Conflicts
Dag Balkmar
 
10. Hypermobile, Sustainable or Safe? Imagined Childhoods in the Neo-liberal Transport System
Tanja Joelsson
 
11. Gendering Mobilities and (In)equalities in Post-socialist China
Hilda Rømer Christensen
 
12. Towards a Feminist Transport and Mobility Future: From One to Many Tracks
Tanja Joelsson and Christina Lindkvist Scholten

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Infrastructure, Transportation Countries: China, Sweden

Year: 2019

Pages

© 2019 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.

Subscribe to RSS - Sweden