70 Constitutional Law in the Scandinavian Countries, May 2024

A tribute to the Instrument of Government 1974-2024 (May 2024)

When the Swedish Instrument of Government was adopted in 1974, popular sovereignty and a strong Parliament (Riksdag) prevailed. The courts played a subordinate role, individual rights were less prominent, and constitutional cases were rarely adjudicated. Fifty years later, Sweden has moved from a separation of functions to a de facto separation of powers. Popular sovereignty remains firmly entrenched, but it has taken on a different meaning as a result of Sweden’s membership in the European Union (EU). In 2010, therefore, the Instrument of Government was reformed which strengthened the position of the Swedish courts. The significance of individual rights has also increased as a result of Sweden’s membership in the EU, the incorporation of the European Convention of Human Rights into Swedish law, and the expansion of Chapter 2 on Fundamental Rights and Freedoms in the Instrument of Government.


This volume is a collaboration between Swedish and other Nordic researchers to celebrate the anniversary of the Swedish Instrument of Government. The events of our recent past, characterised by pandemics, terrorist threats and repressive legislation to deal with serious crime, demonstrate that Constitutional issues are even more relevant today than ever.

The Volume editor for this volume is Professor Karin Åhman. See here for the foreword, table of contents and list of contributors.