Final Report

The Arctic region is considered as a barometer for discussions of sustainable development, global warming or human security, but these conversations rarely include futures underpinned by principles of justice. As a frontier for economic development, the Arctic should also be considered as a frontier for considering new types of social, political, economic and environmental ideas. The motivating principle of this workshop was to consider foundations for a new framework of thought that offers a fair deal to the Arctic as it is increasingly incorporated into global processes.

The workshop consisted of four research sessions: normative justice, climate change and sustainability, resources issues, and society. The research presentations included perspectives from scholars from a variety of disciplines including: geography, law, ethics, political science, anthropology and sociology. Professor Don Mitchell (Uppsala University) delivered a keynote lecture on “The Landscape of Justice and Critical Research Agendas”, which explained that geographies of injustice often include unrecognised parts of society, who are often ‘hidden’ in plain sight and challenged us to broaden our understanding of stakeholders in the Arctic.



  • The notion of justice provides a useful tool for developing a research agenda that seeks progressive solutions for achieving sustainable development in the Arctic.
  • Multi-disciplinary perspectives provide richer understandings and interpretations of the landscape for Arctic sustainability research.
  • A major challenge to just economic futures lies in overcoming the restrictions imposed by social, economic and territorial boundary making by the state.


Presented Papers

  • Johanna Ohlsson, Uppsala University ‘Approaches to Justice and its Implications for Ethics in Arctic Regional Research’
  • Roman Sidortsov, Michigan Technological University ‘Just Law? The Concepts of Law & Power Reconciled’
  • Tracey Skillington, University of Cork, ‘A way out of the current impasse: recognizing the Arctic as an autonomous living entity with legal rights’
  • Marianne Pascale Bartels, Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, ‘Bursting the Bubble? Communicating Resource Expectations Adequately in the Context of Global Change and Sustainable Arctic Transformations’
  • Raghnild Freng Dale, Western Norway Research Institute ‘Between Petroleum and Power lines: Perspectives on Energy Futures and Justice in the Norwegian Arctic’
  • Mia Bennet, Univeristy of Hong Kong, ‘Material Consequences: Chinese Iron Demand and Steel Supply in the Arctic.’
  • Corine Wood-Donnelly, Uppsala University ‘Issues for Sustainable Development in the Arctic’
  • Níels Einarsson, Stefansson Arctic Institute, ‘Social equity and fisheries governance in contemporary Iceland’
  • Adam Stepien, University of Lapland, ‘Challenges of Just Transition in the Arctic’
  • Vladislava Vladimirova, Uppsala University, ‘Indigenous Legislation in Russia and the Transformation of Customary Family Norms: Observations from Nenets Autonomous Region’
  • Tanja Joona, University of Lapland, ‘Arctic Challenge for Sustainability—Intergenerational Everyday Life Perspective on Traditional Livelihoods and Climate Change’
  • Hele Kiimann, Uppsala University, ‘Sustainable livelihoods in the Swedish North – The Role of Indigenous Knowledge in Future Land Use Management’
  • Susan Millar, Syracuse University, ‘Kivalina: climate change, conflicts, and the right to exist’

Date and Location: 

22 - 23 August 2019 | Uppsala (Sweden)


IASC Working Group / Committees funding the Project:


Project Lead

Corine Wood-Donnelly


Year funded by IASC



Project Status





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