No model in Practice:A 'Nordic model' to respond to prostitution

Kingston, Sarah Elizabeth and Thomas, Terry (2019) No model in Practice:A 'Nordic model' to respond to prostitution. Crime, Law and Social Change, 71 (4). 423–439.

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The so-called Nordic model to respond to prostitution has been considered in legislative debates across Europe and internationally, and hailed by some as best practice to tackle sex trafficking and is believed to support gender equality. Yet, when we interrogate the utilisation of the Nordic countries laws by law enforcers, it is not being implemented as per the law. We argue that ‘all that is occurring is the transfer of rhetoric and ideology’ in these countries ((Stone Politics, 19 (1): 51–59, 1999) at 56). In this article, we expose the cracks in the so-called Nordic model, thereby discrediting the ‘persuasive’ nature of a unified Nordic approach to prostitution. We draw on policy transfer and comparative law literature to illuminate the problems and challenges of naïve adoption of this so-called model, arguing that this can lead to uninformed, inappropriate and incomplete transfer of the Nordic model, which then becomes a policy irritant, further exacerbating the very problems it seeks to address.

Item Type:
Journal Article
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Crime, Law and Social Change
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01 Oct 2018 12:16
Last Modified:
11 Oct 2023 00:10