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Background and project aim

Eskimo (Inuit) family, mother and sons in national dress. Ammassalik/Tasiilaq, East Greenland. Her yoke is made from imported beads She wears foxskin shorts and sealskin boots Husky dog in foregroundThe Arctic is experiencing fast-paced and far-reaching changes associated both with the effects of climate change and with the impacts of changing global economy. Major players are focusing on the prospects for rapid growth in marine shipping, offshore oil and gas development, commercial fishing, and eco-tourism in previously inhospitable areas. Understandably, others are concerned about the likely impacts of such activities on the Arctic’s small and often traditional human communities and on the region’s ecosystems. This has resulted in an explosion of interest in a wide range of governance issues.

The Arctic Governance Project joined preeminent researchers, indigenous leaders, and members of the policy community to frame the critical issues of governance in the Arctic and devise innovative responses for a sustainable future.

After gathering with a diverse cross-section of researchers and stakeholders from all eight Arctic nations in Tromsø, Norway in January 2010, the Project's leadership compiled an Action Agenda and a report entitled "Arctic Governance in an Era of Transformative Change: Critical Questions, Governance Principles, Ways Forward".

The recommendations contained in these documents has been presented to key policymakers in the national, international and non-governmental sectors.

The Arctic Governance Project has also collected a variety of perspectives and proposals on science-based Arctic governance solutions in its compendium.