Partly in response to these issues, the first level of living survey was conducted in Sweden in 1968. It had as its aim the provision of a comprehensive picture of the welfare and living conditions of the Swedish population, in a way that would also address non-economic indicators. In the 1970s, similar studies were conducted in the other Nordic countries. Despite this common origin and the many similarities shared by the Nordic studies on the level of living, and despite the international reputation of ‘Scandinavian welfare

research’, the various Nordic surveys have prompted surprisingly few comparative ventures, covering a broad spectrum of living conditions (see, however, Allardt 1975; Vogel 1990).2