The Same Policy, But Different Ideas: The Ideational Underpinnings of the Norwegian and Swedish Bans on the Purchase of Sexual Services

38 Pages Posted: 12 Jun 2013 Last revised: 23 Apr 2014

See all articles by Gregg Bucken-Knapp

Gregg Bucken-Knapp

University of Stirling

Johan Karlsson Schaffer

University of Gothenburg - School of Global Studies; University of Oslo - Faculty of Law

Date Written: April 23, 2014

Abstract

Drawing upon the broad ideational approach, this article examines why Sweden and Norway prohibited the purchase of sexual services. Despite similar policies, pro-ban actors in these neighboring countries opted for different ideas when mobilizing support. Swedish policy entrepreneurs successfully grafted the proposed ban onto salient gender equality ideas, and concerns over the abusive pasts suffered by prostitutes. By contrast, Norwegian pro-ban actors achieved political support by stressing the ability of the ban to combat trafficking, a claim made following the arrival of Nigerian street prostitutes on Norwegian city streets. Actors may desire similar prostitution policies cross-nationally, but stress ideas salient in their specific domestic setting when pursuing reform.

Keywords: prostitution policy, ideas, grafting, Norway, Sweden, trafficking

Suggested Citation

Bucken-Knapp, Gregg and Karlsson Schaffer, Johan, The Same Policy, But Different Ideas: The Ideational Underpinnings of the Norwegian and Swedish Bans on the Purchase of Sexual Services (April 23, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2277493 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2277493

Gregg Bucken-Knapp

University of Stirling ( email )

School of History & Politics
University of Stirling
Stirling FK9 4LA, Scotland FK9 4LA
United Kingdom

Johan Karlsson Schaffer (Contact Author)

University of Gothenburg - School of Global Studies ( email )

POB 700
Gothenburg, SE 40530
Sweden

University of Oslo - Faculty of Law ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavsplass
Oslo, 0130
Norway

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