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Autonomy or integration: Historical analysis of the debate on the purpose of Icelandic local self-government

Autonomy or integration: Historical analysis of the debate on the purpose of Icelandic local self-government


Title: Autonomy or integration: Historical analysis of the debate on the purpose of Icelandic local self-government
Author: Hlynsdóttir, Eva Marín   orcid.org/0000-0002-4196-2316
Date: 2018-05-30
Language: English
Scope: 81-100
University/Institute: Háskóli Íslands
University of Iceland
School: Félagsvísindasvið (HÍ)
School of Social Sciences (UI)
Department: Stjórnmálafræðideild (HÍ)
Faculty of Political Science (UI)
Series: Stjórnmál og stjórnsýsla;14(1)
ISSN: 1670-6803
1670-679X (eISSN)
DOI: 10.13177/irpa.a.2018.14.1.4
Subject: Amalgamation; Integration; Autonomy; Path dependency; Local self-government; Sveitarstjórnir; Sameining sveitarfélaga; Sjálfstjórn (stjórnmál)
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11815/780

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Abstract:

An ongoing debate on the purpose of local self-government in Iceland has been simmering mainly between those who believe that local authorities should amalgamate in order to assume more responsibilities and those who believe that local autonomy, understood as the right of citizens to govern their own jurisdictions, should not be weakened. The purpose of this study is to discuss the role of local self-government in Iceland from these two very different perspectives by situating it within the context of the Nordic model of local self-government. This study’s findings reveal that the Icelandic central government has successfully introduced functional reforms at the local level over the past 25 years, but it has not been as successful in initiating territorial reforms. The findings also show that conflict between the ideologies of the traditional autonom

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