Ledelse og koordination i danske regeringer fra 1848 til i dag
Leadership and Coordination in Danish Cabinets from 1848 to the present
How does a Danish Cabinet coordinate its political agenda? Most historical studies of Danish Cabinets have focused on persons and policies, while the development of political institutions has been neglected to some extent. Cabinets function according to three competing principles, namely departmental autonomy of the individual ministers, collegiality in Cabinet as a whole and the central authority of the Prime Minister. This article examines how the strengthening of the Danish Prime Minister’s Office has diminished the strength of the other two principles. Today smaller Cabinet Committees comprised of a few top ministers play a crucial role in coordinating a Cabinet’s policy agenda, whereas full Cabinet meetings used to have a more central role and before that even the Council of State. This analysis is carried out by going through a massive number of memoirs, diaries, archives and other sources from former ministers and top bureaucrats in order to gain insight into the inner workings of Danish Cabinets and the shifts they underwent over time.