Arctic Initiative

2016-18 Arctic Initiative

The Arctic is an emerging region and important new player in global geopolitics. The impacts of climate change are opening the Arctic Ocean to international shipping while the melting of sea ice is increasing access to oil, gas and other valuable resources. Governments from Arctic and non-Arctic nation-states, transnational corporations, indigenous peoples, and environmental justice organizations are increasingly invested in the region’s future. Many of these entities and organizations have roots in the Pacific Northwest.

The Jackson School’s International Policy Institute will analyze these trends, with a focus on indigenous politics and the workings of the Arctic Council. The Council has drawn the attention of the world and now counts China and India as its Observer members. It is the first international body developed in collaboration with indigenous peoples and where indigenous organizations serve on almost equal par with nation-states. In 2016 the Arctic Council will celebrate its 20th anniversary during the 2015-2017 U.S. chairmanship of the Council. During this critical time, the International Policy Institute will analyze the role and future of the Arctic Council in global geopolitics including the mandated integration of indigenous knowledge into Council work, the new Arctic Economic Council, and the role of Asian countries.

For access to the many policy blog posts, publications, videos, and podcasts produced by the 2016-18 arctic fellows, see Arctic Policy Research.

2016-2018 Junior Arctic Fellows