Research Report

SNS Research Brief 59. The Swedish Commissions of Inquiry 1990‒2016

Before a major legislative initiative is debated in parliament, a considerable amount of work occurs in formulating policy proposals. In Sweden, the government typically appoints an independent commission, known as a commission of inquiry, with members coming from the government, opposition parties, academia, interest groups, and the private sector.

The broad commission membership has often succeeded in negotiating compromises and incorporating different perspectives on the implications of different proposals. Recently, however, both scholars and policymakers have expressed concerns that commissions of inquiry may have changed in ways that make it harder for them to fulfill their roles.

This report describes the development of Swedish commissions of inquiry in the 27-year period from 1990 to 2016.