Quick facts

MAPS icon for country

Country: Norway

Year of assessment: 2017 and 2020
Procurement value: Approx. € (2019)

Principal organisation:

  • The Norwegian Agency for Public and Financial Management (DFØ)– formerly Agency for Public Management and eGovernment, Difi)

Main partners:

  • Core Methodology : OECD and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit
  • Sustainable Public Procurement: OECD and United Nation Environment


  • The Norwegian Government has developed a coherent sustainability policy.
  • Enhancing the role of government as a driving force for greener development is a key tenant of this policy. Green public procurement is seen as a central policy tool in terms of meeting environmental and climate goals.
  • Building on a core MAPS assessment conducted in 2017, the deployment of the MAPS Supplementary Module on Sustainable Public Procurement (SPP) in 2019 aimed at identifying where the Norwegian public procurement system could concretely be improved to better support the government’s sustainability policy.
  • Public purchases of goods services and works in Norway amounted to approximately EUR 52.5 billion in 2016. Compared to 2015, this represents an increase of about 4.8 per cent. Public procurement constitutes approximately 16 % of GDP in Norway, which can be compared with the OECD average of 12% of GDP. The central government, excluding defence, accounted for approximately EUR 22 billion; local government accounted for approximately EUR 20.2 billion.
  • As a party to the European Economic Area (EEA), Norway implemented the 2014 EU directives on public procurement in 2016 / 2017.


  • full core MAPS assessment was carried out in 2017. This coincided with the implementation of the 2014 EU directives on public procurement into Norwegian law in 2016/2017. His primary objective was to deliver input to a government whitepaper on public procurement, which was in development at the time.
  • The MAPS Sustainable Public Procurement assessment started in March 2019 with the final report delivered in March 2020. The main objective was to conduct a thorough, external assessment of the way sustainability features in the Norwegian public procurement system.
  • The findings of the assessment feed into Norway’s action plan to increase the share of green and innovative public procurement.
  • The assessment was conducted by a team coordinated by the OECD with members from DFØ/Difi and United Nations Environment. In addition to them, various members of the Norwegian administration, civil society, media and academic institutions were open and frank interview partners in this assessment.

Key results and impacts

The core MAPS resulted in a range of recommendations that informed the government whitepaper on public procurement:

  • Develop interoperable electronic procurement systems for the entire procurement cycle.
  • More data gathering and performance monitoring.
  • Address societal challenges and ensure that the fullest potential of strategic procurement is achieved.
  • Monitor the implications of the recent public procurement legal reform.
  • Monitor the performance of the central purchasing body (Statens innkjøpssenter).
  • Increase the offer of professionalization activities by Difi (DFØ) for use by contracting authorities.
  • Fine-tune the appeals and audit framework.

The MAPS Sustainable Public Procurement module identified several barriers and key recommendations such as

  • Strengthen the sustainability dimension in training and capacity
  • Lack of implementation and compliance with the legislation
  • Establish a performance management framework that allows for data-driven / evidence-based monitoring of SPP
  • Ensure that SMEs can participate in contracts with a sustainability dimension.

The main measures in the upcoming action plan address the main barriers and key recommendations identified in the MAPS Sustainable Public Procurement module. DFØ has already started to reorganize its work and has begun carrying out some of the reform activities in parallel. They have strengthened their capacity on monitoring green and innovative public procurement, and they have launched a program to increase competencies. With this program they have already:

  • Published beginners’ guidance, e-learning, and webinars on how to “get started with green public procurement”.
  • This is also connected to a certification scheme on Sustainable Public Procurement that they are currently developing. 
  • In February 2021 they opened an SPP helpdesk that answers questions by telephone and email 5 days a week.

“The results of both MAPS assessments gave us important insight into the procurement system, and the report anchored the gaps and goals so that they can be communicated and handled in a good way.”

Dag Strømsnes. Chief of Procurement

Norwegian Agency for Public and Financial Management

Logo od DFO, Norway


Lessons learned

Both the MAPS Sustainable Public Procurement and core MAPS assessments have previously been conducted and connected to relevant national processes. The core MAPS gave input to a whitepaper on public procurement and the MAPS SPP to an action plan on green and innovative public procurement. This has been essential to transforming the results into procurement reforms.

The process itself gave the local teams a lot of professional exchange and learning along the way.

They recommend spending time on pre-mission preparations to achieve a more thorough analysis of the system and identify more areas for improvement.

A broad engagement of stakeholders completes the analysis and facilitates future involvement and follow-up on the recommendations.