Productivity growth has decreased in many countries in recent decades, including Sweden. This trend is concerning as productivity growth is fundamental for long-term prosperity. What factors are important for companies to invest? How may government support and industrial policy impact productivity, competition, and trade? And, importantly, how can we best ensure the development of tomorrow’s competencies?

In the new SNS research project “Productivity, Competitiveness, and Sustainable Growth”, we aim to broaden our perspective, delving into the long-term conditions for higher productivity, enhanced competitiveness, and sustainable economic growth. The project begins in January 2024 and will span three years.


Charlotte Paulie, research director, 073-987 19 11

Simon Torell Witt, project manager, 076-697 69 88

Louise Lorentzon, research director (on leave), 070-791 21 72

Reference Group

The following organizations are represented in the reference group: AstraZeneca, Ericsson, the Ministry of Finance, Google Sweden, Innovation and Chemical Industries in Sweden (IKEM), the National Board of Trade, the Swedish Competition Authority, Luleå Kommunföretag, Mellby Gård, Nasdaq, NCC, Nordic Capital, the Swedish Intellectual Property Office (PRV), Engineers of Sweden, the Association of Swedish Engineering Industries, the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth, Uniper, the Swedish Agency for Innovation Systems (Vinnova) and The Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket).

Upcoming Seminars

The Productivity Commissions’ reform suggestions for Swedish Economy (Swedish) 2024.05.07

ongoing studies

Investments, Productivity, and Competitiveness

This report investigates how corporate investments affect productivity and competitiveness in Sweden, especially considering technological advancements such as AI. It analyzes incentives for investments and their contribution to the productivity and competitiveness of companies. The project aims to identify the driving forces behind investments and productivity improvements, along with their impact on the aggregate economy. The results are expected to provide insights into the factors that create barriers to productivity enhancements and offer suggestions for how policymakers can encourage companies to invest in new technologies and improve productivity for the benefit of businesses, consumers, and society as a whole.

Authors: Florin Maican, associate professor of Economics at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg and Matilda Orth, Ph.D. in Economics at the Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN).

Launch: spring 2025.

Risk and Risk Distribution in the Green Transition

The report examines risks arising from large investments within the context of the green transition in Northern Sweden. While investments, for instance in electrification and industries such as green steel manufacturing and battery production, have the potential to create new jobs and contribute to climate goals, they also bring societal challenges and financial risks. The report highlights these challenges from a socio-economic perspective and analyzes, among other things, how risks are distributed between the state, municipalities, and private actors.

Author: Sofia Lundberg, professor of economics at the Umeå School of Business, Economics, and Statistics.

Launch: fall 2025.

Productivity Growth and Misallocation in Sweden

Despite the introduction of groundbreaking technologies such as broadband internet, mobile telephony, and artificial intelligence, a decelerating pace of productivity growth has been observed over the past decades. This report addresses the question of why productivity growth has declined and explores whether inefficient allocation of resources among firms could be an explanation. Using the latest research methodology and detailed Swedish firm data, the report intends to analyze the market power of firms and its impact on aggregate productivity. The results are expected to contribute to the discussion on economic policy and regulation in Sweden, specifically regarding the need to adjust these to stimulate productivity.

Authors: Horng Chern Wong, assistant professor of economics at Stockholm University and Anders Åkerman, professor of economics at the University of Stavanger.

Launch: spring 2026.