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The Swedish model and the European integration

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IEP Lille

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  1. Introduction
  2. The consequences of Sweden's entrance in the European Union
  3. Basic tenants of the swedish model
    1. Swedish national identity and welfare state
    2. Characteristics of the Swedish model
    3. Complexity of the Swedish model
  4. The swedish debate over the european question
    1. The main political forces of Sweden
    2. The most important economic actors on the question of European Union membership
    3. The Swedish conceptions of Europe
  5. The consequences of european union membership on swedish welfare state and economy
  6. Conclusion
  7. Bibliography

Sweden officially joined the European Union on January 1st, 1995. Since that time Sweden is part of the European Union, but it is said to be one of the most Euro-sceptical members of the Union. What are the causes for this strong Swedish Euro-scepticism? It is linked to the special social structure of Sweden, characterized by the well-known universal welfare state, and the Social-Democrat dominated state, linked to the importance of the trade unions in Sweden, as Sweden has approximately 80 percent of Unions' members.
So we can wonder what the consequences of Sweden's entrance in the European Union on the Swedish model were, and focus mainly on its economic aftermath. To what extent can the roots of the Swedish Euro-scepticism be found in the Swedish model? What were the different points of view over the European question in Sweden? Are the doubts over Europe linked to the economic and social results of the European Union membership?

[...] In order to conclude this essay we have seen that the consequences of European Union membership were limited on the Swedish model and especially on the Swedish extensive welfare state system. However the Swedish welfare state had some indirect consequences on the way the Swedish membership of European Union is perceived by the Swedes. There is a strong fear in Sweden that the European Union would force Sweden to diminish it expenses for the welfare state and finally forces Sweden to abandon it. [...]

[...] This was one of the reasons why Sweden decided to join the European Union, because it was believed that the Swedish economy would be more protected and would easily find commercial partners if it was member of an important free trade organization such as the European Union. In 2005 the GDP of Sweden was approximately 348.1 billion dollars, which means around dollars GDP per capita. The growth rate of Sweden in 2005 was 2.7 percent, which was quite good compared to the rest of Europe. [...]

[...] and Waever, O European Integration and National Identity. London, Routledge. -Kautto, Mikko and Kvist, John. February 2002. Distinct or Extinct? Nordic Welfare States in the European Context. -Petersson, Olof. December 2000. Le débat suédois sur l'Europe. Etudes et recherches n 12. -Gidehag, Robert, Öhman, Henrick, Larsson, Svante What has the EU done for us? Analysis of the economic consequences of Sweden's EU membership. Confederation of Swedish enterprises. -Le modèle scandinave à l'épreuve des urnes. Le Monde Dossiers et Document 356. September 2006. [...]

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