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Keywords:

  • voluntary associations;
  • Sweden;
  • survey;
  • citizen participation;
  • democratic values

Abstract

In this study I investigate whether and to what extent local voluntary associations in Sweden maintain values of democratic governance. The study is based upon a survey of about 400 local voluntary associations within four local communities. The results show that a vast majority of these associations are supportive of member influence and governance through internal democracy. These values can also explain civic engagement of these local voluntary associations. The results indicate that if these values would change radically it would probably have an impact on civic engagement of these organizations, but at present the support remains solid.