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Dr. Johan Nordensvärd is Senior Lecturer at the Department of Political Science, Stockholm University and a Researcher at the University of Southampton. He holds a PhD in Political Science (University of Oldenburg) and a Master degree in Political Science (Lund University).

Before joining Stockholm University he worked as Lecturer in Social Policy at the University of Brighton, LSE Fellow in Social Policy and Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science and as Lecturer in Social Policy at the University of Southampton.  He was Visiting Researcher at the Australian National University, the University of New South Wales, the University of Auckland and Aalborg University. He was co-chair and a theme leader of the interdisciplinary Clean Carbon Group at the University of Southampton. 

Johan’s research focuses on the intersection of environmental politics, international development and social policy, especially with regards to low carbon development, innovation policy and energy policy.   He is particularly interested in developing a broader understanding of environmental justice, identity and ecological citizenship in relation to renewable energy technologies. He has contributed to two large research projects: 1. ‘China Goes Global: A comparative study of Chinese hydropower dams in Africa and Asia’ which was funded by the UK Economics and Social Research Council ESRC and addressed the social and environmental implications of Chinese-built and Chinese-funded hydropower dams in Cambodia, Malaysia, Ghana and Nigeria. 2. ‘Technological Trajectories for Climate Change Mitigation in China, India and the EU’ funded by the Svenska Riksbanken Jubileumsfond, the Volkswagen Foundation and the Compagnia di San Paolo, which studied how emerging low carbon technological trajectories in Europe, China and India differ and what the implications for strategies of international competition and cooperation are at the enterprise and government level.

He has published the first textbook on Low Carbon Development, the first reader in Low Carbon Development and a monograph on the social implications of Low Carbon Development (with Routledge). He has also published in peer-reviewed international journals such as Energy Policy, Energy for Sustainable Development, Asia and Pacific Policy Studies, Sustainable Development, International Journal of Water Resource Development and Energies.  He has also a research interest in the rise of new right-wing parties and their impact on both social policy and environmental policy. He is PhD supervisor for students in the field of Environmental Social Science.


Books and edited volumes

Nordensvärd, J, 2016. The Social Challenges of Low Carbon Development, Earthscan, Routledge, Oxford. Monograph.











Urban, F and Nordensvärd, J, 2016. Low Carbon Development: Key Texts Vol 1 – 4 Routledge Major Works Collection, Earthscan, Routledge, Oxford











Urban, F. and Nordensvärd, J., 2013. Low Carbon Development: Key Issues. Earthscan, Routledge, Oxford. Textbook.













Selected Peer-reviewed articles

Nordensvard, J and Ketola, M (2018)  Rethinking the Consumer Metaphor versus the Citizen Metaphor: Frame Merging and Higher Education Reform in Sweden Social Policy & Society, 1: doi:10.1017/S1474746418000465

Ketola, M. and Nordensvard, J. (2018) Reviewing the relationship between social policy and the contemporary populist radical right: welfare chauvinism, welfare nation state and social citizenship, Journal of International and Comparative Social Policy, 34 (3)

Nordensvärd, J., Yuan, Z. and Xiao, Z., 2018. Innovation core, innovation semi-periphery and technology transfer: the case of wind energy patents, Energy Policy, Volume 120, September 2018, Pages 213-227

Urban, F and Nordensvärd, J., (2018) Low Carbon Energy Transitions in the Nordic Countries: Evidence from the Environmental Kuznets Curve, Energies, 11(9), 2209

Majid Cooke, F, Nordensvärd, J., Bin Saat, G, Siciliano, G and Urban, F., 2017. The Limits of Social Protection: The Case of Hydropower Dams and Indigenous Peoples' Land, Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, Volume 4, Issue 3, September 2017, Pages 437-450

Urban, F, Siciliano, G and Nordensvärd, J2017. China’s Dam Builders: their role in transboundary river management, International Journal of Water Resources Development, Vol. 34, NO. 5, 747 – 770

Nordensvärd, J and Urban, F, 2015. The stuttering energy transition in Germany: Wind energy policy and feed-in tariff lock-in, Energy Policy, Vol. 82: 156-165

Urban, F., Zhou, Y., Nordensvärd, J., and Narain, A., 2015. Firm-level technology transfer and technology cooperation for wind energy between Europe, China and India: From North–South to South–North cooperation? Energy for Sustainable Development, Volume 28(10):29-40

Nordensvärd, J., Urban, F. and Mang,G. 2015. Social innovation and Chinese overseas hydropower dams: The nexus of national social policy and Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainable Development,  23, 245–256

Urban, F., Nordensvärd, J., Siciliano, G and Li, B., 2015. Chinese overseas hydropower dams and social sustainability: The Bui dam in Ghana and the Kamchay dam in Cambodia, Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, Vol. 2, Nr. 3, 573-589

Nordensvard, J and Ketola, M., 2014. Scandinavian populist parties and the welfare nation state: the national, ethnic and cultural reframing of the welfare state. Journal of Social Policy and Administration,  May 2015, Pages 356-375

Nordensvard, J., 2014. Gender and education policy in Ghana: The impact of informal citizenship and labour market on formal education for girls, Women Studies International Forum, Volume 47, Part B, November–December 2014, Pages 278-286

Nordensvärd, J., 2014. Dystopia and Disutopia: Hope and Hopelessness in German youth’s future narratives. Journal of Educational Change, November 2014, Volume 15, Issue 4,  pp 443–465

Nordensvärd, J., 2013. The weak human and the saving grace of the welfare state: German pupils’ perception of future social change and drivers of change, Futures, Volume 49, May 2013, Pages 22-34

Nordensvärd, J., 2013. Using political metaphors to understand education policy in developing countries: the case of Ghana and informal communities. Policy Futures in Education, Vol. 11, Nr. 1

Urban, F., Nordensvärd, J., Wang, Y., Khatri, D., 2012. An analysis of China’s investments in the hydropower sector in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region. Environment, Development and Sustainability, Vol.15(2):301-324.

Urban, F., Nordensvärd, J. and Zhou, Y., 2012. Key actors and their motives for wind energy innovation in China. Innovation and Development, Vol. 2, Nr.1, PP. 111–130.

Selected Chapters in edited volumes

Poelina, A and Nordensvärd, J., 2018. Sustainable Luxury Tourism, Indigenous communities and governance in M.A. Gardetti and S.S. Muthu (editors) Handbook on Sustainable Luxury, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation, Springer, Singapore, PP. 147 - 166

Ketola, M. and Nordensvärd, J., 2018 Social policy and populism: welfare nationalism as the new narrative of social citizenship, Social policy review 30: Analysis and debate in social policy, 161

Nordensvärd, J., 2010. The Consumer Metaphor versus the Citizen Metaphor in Education Policy. In M. Molesworth, E. Nixon and R. Scullions (Eds.). The Marketisation of Higher Education: The Student as Consumer, Routledge.

Teaching @ SU

Internationel Politik/International Politics

Global Environmental Politics

EU som politiskt system (Magister)