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



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.