Muslims and the Swedish Model

A longitudinal study of state - Muslim civil society relations


Swedish Research Council

Project type



In Sweden relations between the state and Muslim organizations are currently subject to a confidence crisis, as the organizations are accused of not living up to basic democratic values. How did Sweden reach the current situation in state–Muslim relations? And why now and not earlier as did other European countries?

The objective of this project is to contribute with historical perspectives, and to analyze to what extent the current crisis could be a result of the Swedish neo-corporative model itself. The project will be guided by the following questions:

  • How have Muslim organizations been incorporated into Swedish models of policy-making processes?
  • Which organizations have been represented, and why?
  • What demands have these organizations been pursuing, and what impact have they had on policy-outputs?
  • What impact has the Swedish model had on the development on the Muslim organizations and the current crisis?

Analyzing archive materials, we will use an analytical model where processes of the relevant political actors and institutions are systematically investigated to identify critical junctures and trace when and how they are reinforced, or when changes occur.

The interdisciplinary approach of the project, combining competences in religious studies and political science, is innovative and incumbent to produce substantial knowledge regarding a scientifically pertinent and under-researched issue which is also one of the most debated political topics of our time.

Research area / geographic area

Historical and Contemporary Studies Social Sciences Study of Religions Political Science Centre for the Study of Political Organization Politics, Economy and the Organisation of Society Social sciences Sweden

Contract ID


Project time

2021 — 2023


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