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Sara Brogaard

Sara Brogaard


Sara Brogaard

Struggling for an ideal dialogue. An analysis of the regional dialogue processes within Sweden's first National Forest Program


  • Iris Maria Hertog
  • Sara Brogaard

Summary, in English

In 2018, a strategy for Sweden's first National Forest Program was launched. As part of its implementation, County Administrative Boards have initiated dialogue processes for drafting regional forest strategies. Stakeholder deliberation is ascribed the potential to promote trust and mutual understanding, lead to more robust decisions and smoother implementation. We examine the dialogue processes, focusing on the two regions of Västra Götaland and Gävleborg, by posing three questions: 1) How are the current regional dialogue processes within the National Forest Program designed, and why in this way? 2) To what extent do the dialogues hitherto live up to key conditions needed to reach communicative action as articulated by Habermas and best practices as identified in the academic literature on stakeholder participation in natural resource management and policy? 3) What implications could these findings have for the potential of the dialogue processes to contribute to reconciling the overriding goal conflicts as they play out in Swedish forestry? For the inquiry, we used semi-structured interviews, document analysis and a survey. The study concludes that a clear effort is made to include a variety of actors in the process. However, for successful dialogues important preconditions need to be addressed; long-term funding for the dialogues needs to be secured, and the overall role of the NFP and of the regional dialogue processes should be clarified. The analysis also shows that fundamental goal conflicts in the Swedish forestry sector, primarily between timber production and conservation goals, should be handled more explicitly at the national level.


  • LUCSUS (Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies)

Publishing year





Forest Policy and Economics



Document type

Journal article




  • Forest Science


  • Communicative action
  • Forestry
  • Habermas
  • National Forest Program
  • Participation
  • Sweden




  • ISSN: 1389-9341