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Louise Skoog

Assistant Professor in Political Science. Interested in multi-level governance, placement of public services, political conflicts, and the center-periphery divide.



Works at

Associate professor at Department of Political Science
Samhällsvetarhuset, plan 5, Umeå universitet Umeå universitet, 901 87 Umeå

I have a PhD in Public Administration, University of Gothenburg 2019. From 2019 to 2022, I worked as a researcher in Public Administration at the University of Gothenburg, within the VR-funded project "Competitive democracy in Swedish local government." Between 2022-2023, I was a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Political Science. And since 2023 I am an assistant professor in political science.


Research Interests

My research interests include multi-level governance, placement of public services, political conflicts, the relationship between urban and rural areas, sustainable rural development, and public meals.


Current Research

Currently, I am working on the research project "The challenge of localizing public services – equal access to public services and democratic governance in the whole of Sweden" (funded by Formas, approximately 7 million SEK) as the principal investigator. In this project, we examine how priorities and decision-making regarding the localization of public services in Swedish municipalities and regions can be conducted in a legitimate manner. Project leader: Louise Skoog, participating researchers: Jenny de Fine Licht and David Karlsson.


During 2023, a survey towards members of local councils in Europe is conducted and Sweden is one of the 26 countries included. For each participating country, a national research group is involved and together with colleagues in political science at Umeå University, I am participating in this project during 2023-2024. The aim of the survey is to increase our understanding of which attitudes, conditions and challenges of local council members that are similar and which varies across European countries. The survey includes questions on working conditions, experiences of threats and hostility, as well as council members' perceptions of power and influence in local politics.


Teaching experience

  • Research Methodology
  • Democratic Theory and Welfare Models
  • Local Politics and Administration
  • Sweden's Political System
  • New Public Management and Public Auditing
  • Politics and Administration in Multi-level Systems
  • Public Leadership
  • Supervision at all levels


Research Networks

I am part of the externally funded research networks:

  • Team Nordic Shrinkage, which was initiated through funding from a government's initiative on promoting research on rural areas (Uppdrag Landsbygd). The network is interdisciplinary and brings together researchers who share an interest in shrinking areas in northern Europe.
  • Local Food - for a Better Climate, which gathers researchers interested in how power dynamics around food can contribute to a more sustainable and climate-adapted local development in rural areas.


Previous Research Projects

"Competitive democracy in Swedish local government - how parliamentary settings and marketization form local political conflicts" (funded by the Swedish Research Council, approximately 2.8 million SEK) as a co-applicant and participating researcher. In this project, we study how local politicians and parties navigate the conflicting demands they face from parliamentary settings and political competition on one hand, and marketization and competitive administration on the other. Project leader: David Karlsson, participating researchers: Louise Skoog, Oskar Svärd, and Pierre Donatella.

"Political conflicts - dissent and antagonism among political parties in local government" (dissertation project). In my dissertation, I examined political conflicts at the local level. Political conflicts arise from, or at least are fueled by, divisions and tensions in society regarding how resources should be distributed among citizens and social groups. These conflicts manifest on the parliamentary stage through political parties representing their constituents' interests. Understanding how political conflicts are expressed and managed is thus crucial for understanding the political system. In my dissertation, titled "Political conflicts - dissent and antagonism among political parties in local government," I explored the nature, causes, and effects of political conflicts at the local level.

Ovisshetens tid: SOM-undersökningen 2022, Göteborgs universitet 2023 : 329-342
de Fine Licht, Jenny; Karlsson, David; Skoog, Louise
Kommunal Ekonomi, Föreningen Sveriges kommunalekonomer 2023, (2) : 39-40
de Fine Licht, Jenny; Karlsson, David; Skoog, Louise
School of Public Administration Working Paper Series, 2023:36
Karlsson, David; Skoog, Louise
Acta Politica, Palgrave Macmillan 2023, Vol. 58, (4) : 819-836
Skoog, Louise; Svensson, Petra
Nordisk Administrativt Tidsskrift, Det Nordiske Administrative Forbund (NAF) 2023, Vol. 100, (1)
Skoog, Louise; Svärd, Oskar
Political Research Exchange, Routledge 2022, Vol. 4, (1)
Skoog, Louise; Karlsson, David
Politics and Policy, Wiley-Blackwell 2021, Vol. 49, (2) : 390-413
Skoog, Louise
Andra hjälpen: allt du behöver veta för att skriva en uppsats, Lund: Studentlitteratur AB 2020 : 181-193
Skoog, Louise
Göteborg: University of Gothenburg 2019
Skoog, Louise
Politics, Sage Publications 2017, Vol. 38, (2) : 182-196
Skoog, Louise; Karlsson, David
Lokalpolitisk lederskap i Norden, Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk 2015 : 112-147
Skoog, Louise
Svenska politiker: om de folkvalda i riksdag, landsting och kommun, Stockholm: Santérus Förlag 2014 : 191-215
Karlsson, David; Skoog, Louise
Förvaltningshögskolans rapporter, 120
Skoog, Louise