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The politics of electricity deregulation in Sweden: the art of acting on multiple arenas


  • Högselius, Per
  • Kaijser, Arne


This article investigates the deregulation of the Swedish electricity industry as a political process. Discussions about deregulation started in the late 1980s. A first step in the process was the corporatization of the Swedish state-owned utility Vattenfall in 1992. The deregulatory process culminated with the new Electricity Law, which entered into force in 1996. We investigate in historical depth how a diverse range of actors contributed to shaping both the new institutional environment and the political discourse. The article scrutinizes not only the formal political decision-making process and the activities of a variety of ministries, boards and agencies, but also the processes by which energy companies and other relevant industrial actors influenced the outcome of the regulatory reforms. We explicitly focus on activities taking place on both political and business arenas, showing that major stakeholders acted on several arenas simultaneously to influence the deregulatory process and that the large power companies were most skilful in doing so. We also show that activities on the political and business arenas mutually reinforced each other in shaping the new regulatory framework.

Suggested Citation

  • Högselius, Per & Kaijser, Arne, 2010. "The politics of electricity deregulation in Sweden: the art of acting on multiple arenas," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 2245-2254, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:38:y:2010:i:5:p:2245-2254

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Al-Sunaidy, A. & Green, R., 2006. "Electricity deregulation in OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 769-787.
    2. Steven N. Isser, 2003. "Electricity Deregulation: Kilowatts for Nothing and Your BTUs for Free," Review of Policy Research, Policy Studies Organization, vol. 20(2), pages 219-238, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Darmani, Anna & Rickne, Annika & Hidalgo, Antonio & Arvidsson, Niklas, 2016. "When outcomes are the reflection of the analysis criteria: A review of the tradable green certificate assessments," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 372-381.
    2. Shivaie, Mojtaba & Ameli, Mohammad T., 2015. "An environmental/techno-economic approach for bidding strategy in security-constrained electricity markets by a bi-level harmony search algorithm," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 881-896.
    3. Darmani, Anna, 2015. "Renewable energy investors in Sweden: A cross-subsector analysis of dynamic capabilities," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 46-57.
    4. Uba, Katrin, 2010. "Who formulates renewable-energy policy? A Swedish example," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(11), pages 6674-6683, November.
    5. Streimikiene, Dalia & Siksnelyte, Indre, 2016. "Sustainability assessment of electricity market models in selected developed world countries," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 72-82.
    6. Agrell, Per J. & Brea-Solís, Humberto, 2017. "Capturing heterogeneity in electricity distribution operations: A critical review of latent class modelling," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 361-372.
    7. He, Yongxiu & Xu, Yang & Pang, Yuexia & Tian, Huiying & Wu, Rui, 2016. "A regulatory policy to promote renewable energy consumption in China: Review and future evolutionary path," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 695-705.
    8. repec:eee:enepol:v:113:y:2018:i:c:p:688-700 is not listed on IDEAS


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