Landlord and Entrepreneur: The Shifting Roles of the State in Norwegian Oil and Gas Policy

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Abstract

This article discusses the shifting roles of the Norwegian state as landlord and entrepreneur in developing and maintaining its national oil and gas industry. Drawing from endogenous-growth and small-state theories, the article discusses the roles of the Norwegian state as infant industry developer, mature industry controller, and national company owner. The Norwegian petroleum experience shows how a nation-state expressed clear visions and goals for an industrial sector, and took the role as leader of industrial and economic developments itself. The case argues that for a strategic national industry to be competitively developed and retained and social goals reached, a strong, comprehensive, and dynamic interaction between the state and industry, led by the state, may be necessary.

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