Public Organization Review

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 525–544 | Cite as

The Role of Organizational Identities for Policy Integration Processes – Managing Sustainable Transport Development

  • Linnea Eriksson


Sustainable transport development is a complex, but necessary issue to manage if the use of fossil energy will decrease and transportation become more energy-efficient and environmental friendly. The contemporary public organization is organized into policy sectors and tiers of government, but the issue of sustainability is not confined to one single sector or level, it transcends all these traditional boundaries. To address this complexity policy integration has been suggested as a way for public organizations to open up the sectoral and vertical boundaries in policymaking. This paper discusses a case study of a political committee on the regional level in Sweden, which has been formed for integrated policymaking between sectors and local and regional authorities to manage sustainable transport development. The analysis of the case shows that vertical and sectoral integration are dependent processes and that the relation between different organizational identities either strengthens or undermine them. Vertical integration is not resulting in sectoral integration, rather it works prohibiting against sectoral integration.


Organizational identity Policy integration Sustainable transport policy Regional governance Sweden 



The work which this article is based on was funded by the Swedish Energy Agency. An earlier draft of the article was presented at the Study Group on Governance of Public Sector Organizations at the EGPA Conference in Toulouse 26-28 August 2015 and the author wish to thank all participants for their comments. The author also would like to thank Lisa Hansson, Jenny Palm and Dick Magnusson for their careful reading of the text.

Compliance with Ethical Standards


This study was funded by the Swedish Energy Agency

Conflict of Interests

The author declares that I have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Thematic Studies - Technology and Social ChangeLinköping UniversityLinköpingSweden

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