A world-leading periphery: exploring representations of Northern Sweden in view of its green transition



In pursuit of the EU’s goal to become the world’s first climate neutral region, Northern Sweden is positioned as a centrepiece to the green transition development. Its innovative industries are hailed as crucial, not only for Sweden but for the sustainable future of Europe. Yet, previous research depicts the cultural region of Norrland as an inner periphery of Sweden, subjected to colonization and marginalization. This article delves into this paradox by examining discursive representations of Norrland in light of the current green transition narratives. Utilizing a qualitative research approach, this study employs critical discourse analysis to systematically examine representations from news media, political opinion, and government institutions, uncovering tensions and contradictions within the discourse. The analysis suggests the prevalence of two main themes, construing Norrland simultaneously as the future and as a struggle. By contextualizing these discourses within the concept of peripheralization, this research suggests that the future-oriented representations dominate the current understanding of Norrland, potentially perpetuating patterns of spatial disparities within the region. Thus, this research contributes with an updated understanding of processes of peripheralization under the guise of a green discourse, suggesting that the development in Norrland seems part of a broader narrative aiming to frame Sweden as the world leader within green transition initiatives.

Research Papers



How to Cite

Persson, H., & Dymitrow, M. (2024). A world-leading periphery: exploring representations of Northern Sweden in view of its green transition. Fennia - International Journal of Geography.