Sweden in Transition


Sweden in Transition #27 - Three Swedish Dads

Season 2, Ep. 27

Today it is a new format: I will leave the floor to three dads so they can share their own experience on paternity leave. Emotion guaranteed!   

Parental leave is 480 days in Sweden, which are more and more shared equally between both parents. It is well paid and during this first year there is no real childcare. On the opposite, afterwards the costs of pre-school is very limited. Also, the tax system in Sweden is individual (not based on the household revenue) encouraging the parent with low income to remain active. All those measures are good incentives for both mums & dads to take the parental leave but  to go back to work afterwards as well.  You will also learn that there are domestic classes in high school, where all boys and girls learn how to cook, bake, clean, iron, sewe and make errands.    

Most of you, listening mums & dads probably did not get the chance of having such a long and equally shared leave. My husband & I certainly did not, but we still feel we fully enjoyed our babies and still spend a lot of quality time with them.

However, the parental leave set up in Sweden feels right, much more natural, fair for both parents and more profitable for kids and society as a whole.   

Please, share your thoughts and comments, I am so interested to hear what you think!  

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Sweden in Transition #25 - Sanna Ghotbi

Season 3, Ep. 25
Very happy to welcome Sanna Ghotbi to talk about Participatory Democracy !After working in politics for four years, Sanna is now working with municipalities and public institutions to design participatory democracy processes. Together we discussed the need to reinvent democracy. We reviewed inspiring examples in various countries: in Spain following 15-M movement in 2011 (Indignados), in France with the tops & flops of the Citizen Convention for Climate, in Ireland on very controversial topics and even in Rojava (Syrian Kurdistan).  We then made a focus on Sweden, known as a Democracy landmark. Partly a myth according to Sanna, who hightlighted opportunities, challenges and specific initiatives going on at the moment.  At the end of the interview, Sanna shared her dream for Participatory Democracy in the future. She would want it to be built on 3 pillars: 1/ Better Representation: Allowing more people from different backgrounds to enter into politics, inspired by the movement "Brand New Congress" in the US, led by AOC (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez), 2/ Better everyday participation: thanks to permanent structures, such as for example rotational Citizen Assemblies,  3/ Better Organising on a grassroots level: through Community Organising  within Civil Society,  "and for that for people in Sweden to wake up ! We are not in this perfect equal country, we need to get organised ! to demand things, to cross pollinate between different movements (equal health care, less discrimination on the job market, better pensions, less segregation and dismanteled public services in disadvantaged areas)".Hope you you will like this conversation as much as I did !