Andreas Østhagen, May 27, 2015
For a decade, journalists and scholars have been engaged in debates on the potential for conflict over Arctic resources and territory. After more sober discussions prevailed the past few years, alarmist headlines have returned due to Russia’s expansionist behavior 2000 south in Ukraine. Outright conflict over the Arctic, however, seems unlikely. At worst, claims over the North Pole’s seabed will lead to a diplomatic struggle. The potential for conflict over offshore resources is also vastly exaggerated. Yet, to contend, like some have, that the Arctic is ‘completely uninteresting geopolitically’, neglects the role that the region plays in the security considerations of some Arctic states, Russia in particular.
Victoria Herrmann, April 25, 2015
In 1958, the U.S. Army released an educational film on the Distant Early Warning System. The system, known as the DEW line, was built as a series of radar sites along the North American Arctic to alert Washington of an impending Soviet attack. In its opening lines, the documentary describes the North as “desolate, savage, remote. A wilderness of unending barren distance … Not too bad for caribou, but no place for human beings.” Fifty-seven years later, America’s perception of the Arctic hasn’t changed much. Through maps of melting ice and stranded polar bears, we have sustained a narrative that paints the circumpolar region as a pristine and unpopulated tundra. Instead of using military outposts to detect incoming nuclear missiles, America today has retooled its northern communities to function as a distant early warning system for climate change.

By Doris Friedrich, Mike McCormack, Seth Myers and Ryan Uljua May 6, 2015
World Policy Blog examines the challenges to cooperation in the Arctic. The author argues that “the future of the region largely depends on what issues the Arctic states…will emphasize…
Flickr/Mads Phil
By Victoria Herrmann April 16, 2015
Globalization, urbanization, and demographic shifts present Arctic policy makers and residents with the opportunity to reinvent circumpolar development for the 21st Century. Download Full Report
Screen Shot 2015-04-24 at 3.21.36 PM.png
Illustration: Juan M. Sarabia
Andreas Østhagen & Andreas Raspotnik, April 22, 2015
The city of Bodø, North Norway’s second largest community, recently saw a number of relatively unfamiliar visitors: Members of the European Parliament (MEP).
photo: Ville Miettine
Jonas Kassow, March 17, 2015
Economic sanctions imposed by the US, EU, and others on Russia will boost the already visible energy diversification into Asian markets as well as business cooperation between Russian and Chinese companies.   
Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 5.23.55 PM.png
Arctic Council
Sebastian Knecht, April 14, 2015
When government representatives will gather for the 9th Ministerial Meeting of the Arctic Council in Iqaluit they will again have to decide on a number of applications by non-Arctic states.
Screen Shot 2015-04-02 at 9.00.22 AM.png

In an abundance of Arctic conferences, it takes something special to stand out. The High North Dialogue conference in Bodø undoubtedly adds new substance to the Arctic conference table.
Screen Shot 2015-02-03 at 12.29.58 PM.jpg
Graphic: Kathrin Keil
By Kathrin Keil, February 2, 2015
Next to all Arctic researchers these days are confronted with the notion that multi-, inter- and transdisciplinary research approaches are inevitable for the future progress of Arctic research.
photo: TAI
Duncan Depledge, March 9, 2015
Last week, the House of Lords published it's first-ever report on the Arctic recommending that the UK appoint an Arctic Ambassador.
Photo: US Navy/Kevin Elliott
Opinion - Arctic Security
By Victoria Herrmann, January 23, 2015
On Tuesday night President Obama took the Senate floor with almost half of the country approving of his economic actions – the most since his hope-filled early months in office. And for good reason. Unemployment has fallen to its lowest levels since 2008.
arctic map risk.jpg
Photo: The Arctic Institute
Opinion - Arctic Security
Mikkel Runge Olesen and Jon Rahbek-Clemmensen, December 8, 2014
Despite periodic warnings about the coming of a new Cold War in the Arctic, the regional dynamics in the High North are not a ticking bomb under broader international security. It is a remarkably peaceful region.
Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 5.02.44 PM.jpg
Photo: Deutsch Roemer
By Marc Jacobsen and Andreas Raspotnik
Photo: USCG/DoD
Opinion - United States
Victoria Herrmann, December 15, 2014
A lot has changed since the United States has last held the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 1998. What was once seen as a closed theater of the Cold War has been transformed into a global hot spot for scientific research.
Map: The Arctic Institute
Defense and Security
By Andreas Østhagen, April 30, 2014
Canada’s recent decision to boycott an Arctic Council task force meeting held in Moscow is a direct example of how the Ukraine conflict is starting to impact Arctic cooperation. Given its prominent position in the Arctic, however, Russia is integral to most schemes for the region’s future development.
EU Parliament.jpg
Photo: EU Parliament
European Union
By Andreas Raspotnik and Andreas Østhagen, March 17, 2014
Three years after the European Parliament’s (EP) last resolution on Arctic issues[1], the European Union’s (EU) parliamentary institution has adopted yet another non-binding resolution dealing with the EU’s northern neighbourhood in its plenary session on Wednesday, March 12th.
Screen Shot 2014-10-21 at 10.07.51 PM.png
Photo: The Arctic Institute
Coast Guard
Andreas Østhagen, October 9, 2014
Coast guards are the maritime workhorses of coastal states, intent on protecting their sovereign rights to fisheries and petroleum resources, while also safeguarding lives and the environment.  In an Arctic Klondike, this institution does the heavy lifting.
Photo: Timo Palo
Arctic Council
By Matthew Willis and Duncan Depledge, September 22, 2014
Global coverage of Arctic geopolitics since 2007 has fed simplistic narratives about the potential for conflict in the region in ways that the eight Arctic states have struggled to counter.
NSR Map All Commodities-01.jpg

Arctic Shipping
Malte Humpert, October 31, 2014
Expectations are high that Arctic shipping routes, particularly the Northern Sea Route (NSR), will rival traditional shipping routes
Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 5.13.36 PM.jpg
Map: The Arctic Institute
Arctic Shipping
Kathrin Keil and Andreas Raspotnik, October 22, 2014
The Russian and Norwegian Arctic are gaining notoriety as an alternative maritime route connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and as sources of natural resources.
4371016084_e44a2eba2c_o copy.jpg
Map: Patrick Kelley
Arctic Shipping
By Malte Humpert, November 23, 2013
Every time Arctic sea ice extent reaches a new record low a host of new reports and studies predict a rapid increase in shipping activities in the Arctic. Expectations are high that Arctic shipping routes, particularly the Northern Sea Route, will rival traditional shipping routes.
EU Ashton-003.jpg
Photo: MFA Norway
European Union
By Andreas Raspotnik and Andreas Østhagen, May 22, 2014
Although currently occupied with more urgent issues affecting the EU’s Eastern Neighbourhood, the Council of the European Union, adopted its latest conclusion on the Arctic.
Photo: Kaet44
By Marc Jacobsen, July 28, 2014
One of the first things the Greenlandic politicians will be confronted in with when they return to Inatsisartut, is a legislative proposal by the current Naalakkersuisut that may limit the public’s right to access documents.
Map: Patrick Kelley
By The Arctic Institute, September 1, 2014
The Arctic Institute’s weekly newsletter The Arctic This Week (TATW) is sent out to 1850 subscribers in 85+ countries. To receive your free copy you can sign up by clicking here. To learn more about TATW please click here.
arctic shipping routes NSR.jpg
Map: The Arctic Institute
By Malte Humpert, September 21, 2014
The Arctic Institute maintains a database of custom-produced Arctic maps in infographics. The archive includes maps about Arctic shipping, ice extent, oil and gas resources, legal boundaries, permafrost, international trade and many more. For a full gallery please click here and here.





The Arctic Institute is an interdisciplinary, independent think tank focused on Arctic policy issues.

The Arctic Institute
Center for Circumpolar Security Studies
P.O. Box 32175
Washington, DC 20007

Phone: +1.202.656.6258

© All Text and Images Copyright 2014
Website and Design: Malte Humpert
Legal Disclaimer