The ‘Idea of Career’ and ‘A Welfare State of Mind’

On the Nordic Model for Welfare and Career

In: Career and Career Guidance in the Nordic Countries


While they are independent states, the Nordic countries have common features. As well as democracy and a mixed economy, a key feature is their social democratic welfare states, often referred to as the ‘Nordic model’ where equality and universalism have guided policymaking. The model and Nordic culture are closely connected. In this chapter, I argue that work, and therefore career, are central concerns in the Nordic model and Nordic culture, and that welfare is organised to ensure maximum participation in work and equal access to employment. I then explore how the centrality of work frames the concept of ‘career’.