Governing and Experiencing Citizenship in Multicultural Scandinavia (GOVCIT) (completed)

What are the relationships between policies and laws on citizenship and experiences of belonging, recognition and sense of community?

Visit the project's homepage.

Dictionary entry for citizen


About the project

The Governing and Experiencing Citizenship in Multicultural Scandinavia (GOVCIT) project will shed new light on relationships between citizenship and integration.

The study will include studying top-down policies and bottom-up lived experiences. The Scandinavian countries have undergone major cultural and social changes due to migration. Considering the homogeneity of the region, the discrepancy in current citizenship regulation is remarkable.

Requirements for citizenship acquisition differ: Norway is positioned in between liberal Sweden and restrictive Denmark. But both Sweden and Denmark permit dual citizenship, while Norway does not. Citizenship in Scandinavia has become eroded, as most substantial rights are attached to permanent residency, not to citizenship. Social cohesion at community level is an explicit aim for citizenship policy.

These macro-level paradoxes inform the study. We will learn more about these through document analysis and interviews with civil servants. At the individual level we recognize that identity cannot be legislated.

Lived experiences are affected not by the letter of the law, but by practices, interpretations and negotiations. The study will gather information about the experiences of immigrants and descendants, as citizens or prospective citizens, through a Scandinavian survey

In Norway, ethnographic methods are used to capture lived experiences of people living in a diverse society. The study is interested in the lived experiences of people both with and without an immigrant background, living in urban areas with diverse populations, and in scarcely populated areas far away from Oslo. Belonging, community and integration are key to ongoing public debates, to which the GOVCIT project will contribute through a focus on the interface of governing and experiencing citizenship.

See GOVCITs homepage at PRIO for recent Activity.


Funding scheme

Project period

2015 - 2019

Published Oct. 19, 2016 3:58 PM - Last modified Jan. 21, 2022 3:01 PM