The guiding rule in Finland is that each ministry is, within its mandate, responsible for the preparation of issues that fall within the scope of government and also for the proper functioning of administration. Given this framework, rather than line ministries involving the government office in policy preparation, the expectation is that the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) involves line ministries in its own policy preparation. In practice, of course, the patterns of interaction are transverse. For one thing, policy programs and other inter-sectoral subject matters in the cabinet program are a concern for the PMO as well as the line ministries, and efforts must be coordinated. Also, as decision-making is collective and consensual in nature, attempts from the part of line ministries to place items on the cabinet agenda without involving at least to some extent the PMO in preparations are foredoomed to failure. This is partly for political reasons, as the broad-based coalition governments in Finland amalgamate and encapsulate ideological antagonism and thereby prevent a fragmentation along ministerial and sectoral lines.
Jaakko Nousiainen, Politiikan huipulla. Ministerit ja ministeriöt Suomen parlamentaarisessa järjestelmässä. Porvoo: Werner Söderström Osakeyhtiö, 1992, p. 163.