Nordic Societal Security : Convergence and Divergence book cover
1st Edition

Nordic Societal Security
Convergence and Divergence

ISBN 9780367492922
Published June 25, 2020 by Routledge
268 Pages

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Book Description

This book compares and contrasts publicly espoused security concepts in the Nordic region, and explores the notion of societal security.

Outside observers often assume that Nordic countries take similar approaches to the security and safety of their citizens. This book challenges that assumption and traces the evolution of ‘societal security’, and its broadly equivalent concepts, in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland. The notion of societal security is deconstructed and analysed in terms of its different meanings and implications for each country, through both country- and issue-focused studies. Each chapter traces the evolution of key security concepts and related practices, allowing for a comparison of similarities and differences between these four countries. Using discourses and practices as evidence, this is the first book to explore how different Nordic nations have conceptualised domestic security over time. The findings will be valuable to scholars from across the geographical and theoretical spectrum, while highlighting how Nordic security discourses and practices may deviate from traditional assumptions about Nordic values.

This book will be of much interest to students of security studies, Nordic politics and International Relations.

The Open Access version of this book, available at, has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.

Table of Contents

PART I: Introduction

1. Introduction: Comparing and Conceptualising Nordic Societal Security

Sebastian Larsson and Mark Rhinard

2. Societal Security in Theory and Practice

Mark Rhinard

PART II: Nordic Cases

3. Swedish Total Defence and the Emergence of Societal Security

Sebastian Larsson

4. The Emergence and Development of Sammfunnssikkerhet in Norway

Claudia Morsut

5. Tracing the Finnish Comprehensive Security Model

Vesa Valtonen and Minna Branders

6. Conceptual and Practical Changes to Security in Denmark: Expect the Unexpected, Decide the Undecidable

Tobias Liebetrau

PART III: Issues and Processes

7. Designing Resilience for Security in the Nordic Region: Implications for Strategy

Trine Villumsen Berling and Karen Lund Petersen

8. From ‘Spiritual Defence’ to Robust Resilience in the Finnish Comprehensive Security Model

Ari-Elmeri Hyvönen and Tapio Juntunen

9. Countering Radicalisation in Norwegian Terrorism Policy: A Welfare State Approach to Societal Security

Sissel Haugdal Jore

10. Threats, Risks, and the (Re)turn to Territorial Security Policies in Sweden

Jonatan Stiglund

PART IV: Conclusions

11. Conclusion: Convergence and Divergence in Nordic Societal Securities

Sebastian Larsson and Mark Rhinard

12. Epilogue: Security Without Society?

J. Peter Burgess

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Sebastian Larsson is a Researcher and Teaching Fellow in International Relations at Stockholm University, Sweden.

Mark Rhinard is Professor of International Relations at Stockholm University and Senior Research Fellow at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs.