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Swedish and British public opinion of the armed forces after a decade of war

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Joakim Berndtsson, Christopher Dandeker, Karl Ydén

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)307-328
Number of pages22
JournalArmed Forces and Society
Issue number2
Early online date6 Feb 2014
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2015

King's Authors


This article analyzes public opinion of the armed forces, focusing on Sweden and the United Kingdom. The cases offer interesting similarities, such as their institutions of parliamentary monarchies and, most recently, their reliance on all-volunteer force, as well as differences especially with regard to their experience of international defence missions. The discussion considers the extent to which the public has been supportive of recent missions conducted by Swedish and UK armed forces, and whether such support is also accompanied by support for the armed forces as an institution. Levels of opinion and trust in the military are quite different in both cases, and public opinion of international missions reflects the contrasting historical engagements of both states. In both cases, we also find a divergence between what publics are willing to support and what national governments wish to pursue as missions for their armed forces.

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