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Informationsteknik och avvägningar mellan individens frihet och statsmakt: - En analys av svenska riksdagsdebatter
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Political Science.
2017 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The main question in this thesis is what kind of considerations political parties in the Swedish parliament have made between individual freedoms and state power in matters concerning information technology. Hence, it relates to a central and never ending debate about the proper relationship between the individual rights of citizens and protection of their personal integrity vis-à-vis state power and the interest of society in general, and in particular how this is affected by the rapid development of information technology.

Four cases of legislative processes about information technology are analyzed. These cases concern parliamentary debates regarding the secrecy act (sekretesslagen) in 1980 (first debate), three debates concerning the personal data act (personuppgiftslagen) in 1998-99, three debates concerning the surveillance and crime prevention act (lag om hemlig rumsavlyssning & åtgärder för att förhindra vissa särskilt allvarliga brott med mera) in 2006-07 and three debates concerning the national defence radio establishment act (FRA & lag om signalspaning) in 2007-09.

An analytical model is developed that includes two ideal types, individual freedom and state power, for the study and categorization of the parties and their positions in each debate. Thus, parties are categorized according to their proximity to the ideal types. The study illustrates that the majority of parties have a tendency to compromise between values constituting the two ideal types; they choose a so called hybrid position in between individual freedom and state power. The exception to this pattern is the Green Party and the Left Party that tend to choose a position close to individual freedom.

Three hypotheses are tested. The first implies that parties tend to position themselves in-between the ideal type positions of individual freedom and state power (hybrid positions). This hypothesis gets strong support as hybrid positions are the most common outcome. The second hypothesis infers that a party has a tendency to support state power when in government, but individual freedom when in opposition. This hypothesis also gets empirical support, as parties, when in government, tend increasingly to support values related to state power, but support is somewhat weaker than for the first hypothesis. Finally, the third hypothesis implies that September 11 2001 was a critical moment in relation to how parties deal with values related to individual freedom and state power, i.e. parties were expected generally to be more disposed to support state power after than before September 11. This gets some support as most parties show this tendency. In parliamentary debates after September 11 the Social Democrats, the Moderate Party and the Liberal Party have been more disposed to position themselves close to the value of state power. On the other hand, the Green Party and the Left Party have not changed their positons. One reason could be that neither of these two parties were in government during the studied years

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Växjö: Linnaeus University Press, 2017. , 275 p.
Series
Linnaeus University Dissertations, 286/2017
Keyword [en]
control, supervision, privacy, individual freedom, power of the state, rule of law, political parties, the Swedish parliament, legislation debates and decisions
National Category
Political Science
Research subject
Social Sciences, Political Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-64539ISBN: 978-91-88357-73-1 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-64539DiVA: diva2:1103993
Public defence
2017-06-01, Weber, Hus K, Växjö, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-05-31 Created: 2017-05-31 Last updated: 2017-06-12Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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Output format
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