This paper examines the ability of Sweden, Finland and Denmark to influence decision-making in European Union (EU). This is a case study and the research will analyze whether particular objective features are better suitable, than subjective features, to study the ability of the EU Nordic states to have a say within the EU environmental policy. The Nordic states will be placed within a conceptual framework intended to explain states’ ability to exercise influence internationally. The paper will argue that traditional quantitative measures normally defining size of states, such as number of inhabitants, territorial size, size of GDP and military strength, do not give a clear picture of their influence within the EU. The paper argues that objective features which are concerned with how various domestic and external actors regard the Nordic states in environmental matters have enabled them to punch above their weight in EU policy-making. Also, it argues that features such as ambitions and prioritization of the Nordic politicians and their ideas about EU decision-making processes may indicate the states’ ability to influence within the Union. Furthermore, states’ administrative competence and the degree of domestic cohesion combined with the degree to which the state maintains an external united front are important indicators of their successes in the EU.
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