Skip to main content


EACEA National Policies Platform


1. Youth Policy Governance

Last update: 20 November 2020


Norway has a predominantly centralized political/administrative system of governance, which means that most, if not all, overarching political strategies are made at state level, and then implemented top-down.

The two lower levels of government, counties and municipalities, are the main implementers of general state policy. This is true to the implementation of youth policy as well. The exception is where the central government has its own implementing bodies at regional level for core services and institutions (e.g. hospitals, universities, police, prisons, and courts).

Both counties and municipalities have increased their autonomy towards the way government funding is being used to obtained the desired means and goals, by utilizing so-called free funding [‘frie midler’] – sometimes called non-earmarked funding.

Lastly, Norway does not have a youth law, and by that, no judicial definition of youth. This means that particular legislation to young people is mostly found in laws countering the needs of the child (under the age of majority).

Still, Norway has a comprehensive and encompassing youth policy – see segment 1.3 National youth strategy.