DIIS Reports / Danish Institute for International Studies 2011:09
This report provides multiple perspectives on security in the Arctic area. A key objective is to demonstrate that, although the Arctic is the site of competing natural resources and land claims, which are emerging from such phenomena as melting ice and new sea routes, there are also many signs of fruitful regional cooperation and sound neighbourly relations. This thesis is supported by the high level of Arctic institutionalisation that has evolved since the end of the Cold War. Despite this, some media outlets have routinely portrayed the Arctic as a possible site of inter-state conflict. Such accounts do not take sufficient account of the collaborative initiatives that take place within the Arctic Council, the Nordic Council of Ministers and the European Union, to mention a few. The Arctic is situated within a complex web of multilateral and bilateral networks, ranging from states to regional institutions. What is more, there is a great deal of emphasis on the involvement of indigenous and local communities in key decision-making processes. This is not to argue that there are no challenges to security and prosperity in the Arctic area, but rather that we need to investigate these against the backdrop of the ongoing institutionalisation of the High North.