Faculty Publications


The economy of the Arctic

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The Palgrave Handbook of Arctic Policy and Politics

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The Arctic economy is comprised of a broad range of local, regional, and national economies in highly diverse settings. These economies exhibit broad variations in terms of both natural and human resources, as well as in their economic structure and capacities, employment and role of private and public actors, and the range and importance of the issues and challenges they face. At the same time, they have many distinct features in common, some of which are structural in nature and may impede or challenge future economic development at various levels and scales. The dominant components of the Arctic economy include formal (market-based), traditional (subsistence), and transfer (public) sectors. Although the Arctic economy is increasingly shaped by events, decisions, and activities happening elsewhere, with the future of the Arctic influenced by non-Arctic regional, social, political, and economic interests, Arctic regions and communities are taking steps toward positioning themselves to tackle the challenges of economic development and embarking on fostering alternative, locally embedded economic activities. These activities focus on arts and crafts, tourism, small-scale manufacturing, and North-specific technological innovation, as well as address the coupling of traditional, market-based, and public and transfer economies. It also includes seeking new institutional arrangements that leave more control in the hands of local communities-ways forward that appear to signal a changing balance of power.


Department of Geography

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