ArcticNexus Aalborg Nov14 Thomsen

The Arctic Nexus in Asian-Nordic+ Relations
Aalborg, Denmark, 5-7 November 2014
Robert C. Thomsen
CIRCLA, Aalborg University
“we invite the panelists to make brief interventions on what they see as
the key research questions for their theme and their suggestions
for future, collaborative research addressing these questions.
Key research questions
Comprehensive sustainable development
• Sustainable development is: “development that meets the needs of
the present without compromising the ability of future generations to
meet their own needs” (Our Common Future 1987, 24).
• ‘Sustainability’: often a synonym for ‘eco-friendly’, environmentally
• Economic, social, cultural and political sustainability (interconnected,
– incl. workable constitutional set-ups, efficient,
representative political institutions and governance capacity.
Key research questions
National movements and comprehensive sustainability in the Arctic
Sustainable development is also a matter of collective, social and cultural
identity coherence.
Q: What are the internal discrepancies/conflicts
In between
Arctic communities:
and nation-building
in Arctic communities
(ethnic-civic, separatist-autonomist)?
Contemporary ‘stateless’ nationalism does not always play out as
Q: How can autonomist nationalism possibly be
• separatism:
full sovereignty
(often ethnic,
within existing
or adapted
constitutional frameworks?
• ‘autonomism’: adequate measure of self-government (often civic,
Suggestions for future, collaborative research on these questions
A comparative research project, exploring nationalist movements in
• unitary states (e.g. Japan, Norway, Denmark (Greenland, Faroe Isl.))
• federal states (e.g. Russia, India and Canada)
• those in-between (e.g. China ~‘de facto federalism’)
Joint proposal (abstract) for ICARP III/ASSW, April 2015, Toyama…?
Third Circular, B9: ‘Arctic governance, sustainable development of local
communities and non-Arctic state’s contribution’
Deadline: 10 November !