Civil Society Governance: Church of Sweden & Welfare

Project: ResearchNational collaboration

Research areas and keywords

UKÄ subject classification

  • Social Work
  • Political Science
  • Business Administration


In the last two decades, the Swedish welfare system has been opened up for private providers, among them civil society organizations (CSOs). However, we know surprisingly little about how the production of welfare is governed and controlled within CSOs, and about the nature of the governance chain in these organizations in general.

This project contributes to filling this gap by investigating the processes of formation and transmission of operations-­related ownership intentions (“huvudmannaintentioner”) in CSOs, and the nature of the steering and control mechanisms through which these intentions are translated into actual operations, in this case welfare services provision.

Theoretically, we draw on corporate governance scholarship and on new institutional organization theory. Our empirical focus is the organizational complex of the Church of Sweden, one of the most important private welfare providers in Sweden. The study is qualitative, and the very substantial empirical materials consist of internal documents and interviews collected at three different governance levels in this large organization.

The study aims to make an original and significant contribution to theory development regarding CSO governance, and thus to research concerned with organizational governance in general; and with civil society and social enterprising in particular.

Funded by: Riksbankens jubileumsfond
Effective start/end date2018/07/012019/06/30

Collaborative partners


Related research output

Stig Linde, Filip Wijkström, Marta Reuter, Ebba Henrekson & Erik Sjöstrand, 2020 Jun 25, Sweden Through the Crisis. Carlsson-Wall, M. & Lindqvist, G. (eds.). Stockholm: SIR, Stockholm School of Economics Institute for Research., p. 1-18 18 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapter

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