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SWEDEN
Society

Cities in SWEDEN

Stockholm

State structure

Parliametnsbuilding SwedenPhoto:Trolvag Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported no changes made

Sweden is a constitutional monarchy. The 1809 constitution, last amended in 1975, stipulates that the cabinet and parliament (Riksdagen) are responsible for the country's administration. The prime minister is appointed by parliament. The king has no political authority and has a symbolic, representative function. Legislative power rests with the Diet.

The ministries are generally small and consist of no more than 100 people. They are only concerned with drawing up general policies. The actual executive and management work is carried out by the administrative bodies (ämbetsverk), headed by a director-general for six years, assisted by a board of directors comprising representatives of various social groups. These bodies occupy an independent position vis-à-vis the ministries and the members of the cabinet and can also submit (legislative) proposals to the cabinet themselves. The Reichstag consists of one chamber with 349 members, who are elected every four years. There is universal suffrage for Swedish citizens aged 18 and over. There is a 4% electoral threshold for the parties taking part in the elections. Since 1976, immigrants have had the right to vote in municipal and provincial councils if they have been registered in the population register for three years.

Since 1922, Sweden has had the consultative referendum on important general topics. The country is divided into 21 districts (län), headed by a governor (landshövding), who is appointed by the Cabinet and who is chairman of the district administration. The country is divided into 286 municipalities. The city council is elected for three years. Mayors are unknown in Sweden. Instead, a chairman is elected for the one-year term. For the current political situation see chapter history.

Education

University of Gothenburg in SwedenPhoto:Medullaoblongata Projekt Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International no changes made

Sweden has had compulsory education since 1842. Primary education now takes nine years, from about 7 to 16 years. In 1962 the nine-year primary school was finally introduced. Almost all schools are run by the local government, although there are also private schools. It is remarkable that students only receive grades from group eight. In addition, the teaching of English as a foreign language starts in the third or fourth year. After primary education, almost all Swedes attend some form of secondary education. Some then prepare for university studies, others combine theory and practice to learn a profession. The learning pathways at university and college take approximately four years.

All forms of public education, including higher education, are free of charge. Sweden has six universities; in addition three with limited training opportunities. The oldest university is that of Uppsala (1477).

Sweden has many forms of adult education that have a long tradition in Sweden. The oldest is the folk high school (since 1865). There are also voluntary evening and day courses, retraining and further training courses for the unemployed, written education and, as far as universities are concerned, distance learning in the sparsely populated areas.

Nobel Prize

Nobel prize medalPhoto:Erik Lindberg Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 no changes made

Swedish science institutes have been awarding Nobel Prizes to scientists around the world since 1901. The awards are named after the Swede Alfred Nobel, who at the end of the nineteenth century built up enormous capital with the manufacture of explosive substances. In 1867 Nobel invented dynamite. Prices are paid from the interest on this capital.

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Sources

Best, J. / Zweden
Gottmer

Carlsson, B. / Zweden
Corona

Danse, W. / Zweden
ANWB

Europese Unie
Europees Platform voor het Nederlandse Onderwijs

Meesters, G. / Zweden
ANWB

CIA - World Factbook

BBC - Country Profiles

Last updated April 2021
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