Jamil Khan and Bengt Johansson, together with Roger Hildingsson (Political Science, LU) have just published a new article in Environmental Policy and Governance, titled 'Strategies for greening the economy in three Nordic countries'.
Green economy is a concept frequently used by governments and international institutions to promote sustainable transformations of the economy. In this study, we explore how the transition towards a green economy is being conceptualised in policy terms in the three Nordic countries Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. Comparing these cases, we analyse strategic policy documents on green growth, circular economy, bioeconomy, low-carbon transitions, and sustainable development. While comprehensive national policy strategies on the green economy are lacking, the studied documents display policy approaches that reflect different aspects of a green economic transformations, such as low-carbon developments, promotion of environmental technology sectors, and enhanced circularity. Our findings indicate the presence of a transformative Nordic model for greening the economy, in which the state plays an active role in supporting innovation and technology development, facilitating cooperation among societal actors, and securing social welfare and human wellbeing. It is underpinned by optimism about the opportunity to reconcile economic growth with sustainable development, while more radical beyond growth approaches are strikingly absent, reflecting their marginal roles in the established policy discourse of these countries. Rather, concepts such as circular economy, sharing economy, and sustainable production and consumption are highlighted as central for greening the economy.