OECD Territorial Reviews: Sweden 2010

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This review of regional policy in Sweden finds that Sweden has recently renewed focus on promoting development opportunities in all regions and has introduced a gradual regionalisation process with a strong bottom-up approach. Yet challenges remain, particularly concerning knowledge diffusion and urban-rural linkages. Further efforts to achieve critical mass and improve co‑ordination can help better address local needs. This Review explores the potential for enhanced innovation and entrepreneurship in both urban and rural areas and provides recommendations to strengthen Sweden’s regional development strategies through improved governance mechanisms, both regionally and across levels of government.



Assessment and recommendations

The combination of growth and equity objectives in Sweden has always had a strong territorial dimension. Based on an export-oriented, R&D-intensive industrial policy, Sweden has achieved one of the highest levels of GDP per capita and the strongest GDP growth rates over the past decade in the OECD area with a striking level of spatial concentration (51% of the national population and 57% of the national output are in the three regions of Stockholm, Västra Götaland, and Skåne in 2005).


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