The themes of the conference will include the following, and proposals for papers are invited on these or related topics:

- The environment
- Energy development
- Natural resource management
- International security
- Borders and ocean boundaries
- The regional governance regime
- Indigenous peoples as participants in Arctic policy and governance 

Paper submission deadline is April 10, 2011

Over the last several years, the Arctic has received increased international attention and been a source of some diplomatic tension as a consequence of apparently accelerating climatic change and a fluid geopolitical environment. The shrinking polar ice cap is a barometer of the changes being wrought by global environmental change. The claims and counter-claims to jurisdiction by the various coastal states as well as the controversial contention that the Arctic is a regional rather than a global concern illustrate the strategic jockeying for positions in the international community.

While the Arctic is part of the Canadian geographical imaginary, Canadian government policy in the region has tended to be disarticulated and nearly as sparse as the communities that dot the Arctic landscape. The present Canadian government has sought to change that impression and to address the North in a variety of policy initiatives as well as high profile visits by the Prime Minister and Governor General.

While the European Union now has a Northern Dimension policy and member states with territory in the Arctic Circle, the EU has, until relatively recently, lacked a strategic approach to the region.  Yet, it is now a concern, for the EU, for certain member states and for the EU’s immediate neighbours.

This is because the Arctic contains within it a host of international and transnational issues, pertaining to, inter alia, the global environment, the rights of indigenous communities, management of the oceans and their resources, the exploitation and distribution of the resultant wealth of the natural resources under the ocean floor, as well as the military strategic and commercial implications of the opening of the Northwest Passage.

While in some regards Canada and Europe have similar yet competing interests in the region in terms of control and regulation of resources or management of the physical and diplomatic environment, they also share common concerns such as regional development, the viability and prosperity of local communities, and the role of indigenous peoples in these changes and the regimes intended to manage them.

This international conference on the Arctic, sponsored by Carleton University’s EU Centre of Excellence in Ottawa, solicits papers on topics relating to these matters which may also address: legal and other jurisdictional disputes; economic analysis of the development potential in the region; governance at the local, regional and global level, including the Arctic Council;  strategic concerns and the comparison on national interests in the Arctic; comparative analyses of national policies towards the Arctic; and transatlantic relations with regard to the North.

For more information, please contact:
Prof. Inger Weibust


Prof. Joan DeBardeleben