Journal Article

Do Advocacy Coalitions Matter? Crisis and Change in Swedish Nuclear Energy Policy

Daniel Nohrstedt

in Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory

Published on behalf of Public Management Research Association

Volume 20, issue 2, pages 309-333
Published in print April 2010 | ISSN: 1053-1858
Published online February 2009 | e-ISSN: 1477-9803 | DOI:
Do Advocacy Coalitions Matter? Crisis and Change in Swedish Nuclear Energy Policy

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This study applies the Advocacy Coalition Framework (ACF) to developments in Swedish nuclear energy policy in the 1970s and 80s. In an effort to contribute to the refinement and debate regarding the generalizability of ACF theory, the objective is to assess the utility of ACF assumptions when applied in this case. The study explores hypotheses about advocacy coalition stability and examines the motivations explaining policy change in the wake of the 1979 Three Mile Island accident and the 1986 Chernobyl disaster. Utilizing different sources of data, the study confirms patterns of coalition stability and shows that interests and political learning were important in explaining policy change in this case. Theoretical implications derived from this study call for further specification of basic ACF concepts (external perturbations, dominant coalitions, and skillful exploitation) and posit the intensity and breadth of political conflict and strategic action as critical factors contributing to the explanation of policy change in contested policy areas.

Journal Article.  11475 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Administration

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