The nomination process has been called “the secret garden of politics” - and for good reasons. The process by which candidates for election are being screened and selected is among the least understood and researched political phenomena, even though this process is so closely linked to the power structure within political parties. Nominations are mechanisms for selecting candidates, but also for holding the incumbent delegates responsible.
In this book, nomination processes in four Nordic countries - Denmark, Finland, Iceland, and Norway - are analyzed and evaluated as instruments of democracy. The authors compare institutions, procedures and unwritten norms. The book in particular addresses questions about the citizens’ ability to influence the nomination processes. The process is not only modelled in traditional terms of representation, but also as a principal-agent relationship.
Despite great institutional similarities, the nomination processes and their outcomes vary considerably across the four countries. In particular, significant differences are found with regard to the extent of citizen control. The book provides a first mapping of this central feature of Nordic politics and thus also serves the comparative purpose of differentiating between otherwise similar political systems.