Political distortions of market competition and electoral competition in Sweden: An integrated analysis using micro-data on local politicians, firms, and procurement

More knowledge is needed about whether and how personal relationships between firms and politicians in Sweden can lead to distorted competition. In this project, we acknowledge that any exchanges of services between politicians and firms could potentially affect both economic competition and political competition in parallel.

We therefore plan to investigate both whether personal relationships between a firm and local politicians make the firm perform better economically, and whether firms with ties to local politicians are more inclined to make decisions that can benefit these politicians before an even election.

To investigate these issues, we plan to analyze register data on local politicians, their family relationships and corporate affiliations, companies' finances, and procurements. Combining micro-level data in all these different areas has not been done before.

- Sweden is often seen as one of the least corrupt countries in the world, but public procurement is increasingly being identified as a particular risk area even here. We hope that our studies can provide new policy-relevant insights into how the interaction between corporate leaders, politicians and their families manifests itself in the country, says principal investigator Axel Cronert.


Principal Investigator: Axel Cronert

Period: 2024-2027

Funding: SEK 4 731 000 from the Swedish Research Council

Research Team

Axel Cronert, Department of Government, Uppsala University

Pär Nyman, Department of Political Science, Stockholm University

Last modified: 2024-02-05