International Conference On Arctic Cooperation

The International Conference on Arctic Cooperation, sponsored jointly by Science for Peace and the Canadian Institute for International Peace and Security (CIIPS), will be held in the Novetel Hotel in Toronto, Oct. 26-28.

Participation from 10 nations includes three groups:

  1. the indigenous peoples who are most directly affected by Arctic industrialization and militarization, and who have special knowledge of the region;
  2. physical scientists and technical experts able to discuss the substance and modalities of civil cooperation; and
  3. social scientists and others who are in a position to analyze the Arctic international security situation and consider ways in which military cooperation might benefit from an integrated approach to Arctic security.

The conference itself is to be tightly focused on discussions among about 30 invited international experts, who will be seated around a conference table to foster thoughtful but lively and wide-ranging discussions. It is intended that somewhat larger number of observers — diplomats, officials, media people, Arctic experts and other informed persons, will be seated behind immediately behind those at the conference table. Two places will also be reserved at the table for participation by observers with special knowledge of a particular paper or topic. All of the presentations in the first two days will be invited papers which will be available as preprints at the conference. The final half day will be devoted to panel discussions which may lead to a conference statement.

The Conference Steering Committee, co-chaired by DE Ronald Purver (CIIPS) and Prof. John E. Dove ( SfP) includes Prof. Franklyn Griffiths (SfP), Programme Chairman, Dr. George Ignatieff (Honorary President, SfP), Prof. John Valleau (SfP), Conference Treasurer, Prof. Jan de Koning (SfP), Conference Assistant Treasurer, Mrs. Robena Weatherley (SfP), Assistant Conference Coordinatoi and Prof. Lynn Trainor (SfP). Mrs. Cecilia Rossos, Victor Travel, attended meetings and greatly assisted the Committee in its work.

The programme put together by Frank Griffiths is given in the next column. The conference dinner speakers are Dimitri Shparo and Richard Webber, the leaders of the Canadian-Soviet Transarctic Ski Expedition.

The major funding ($98,000) for this project was received from CIIPS. The Walter and Duncan Gordon Foundation made a grant of $10,000 for dissemination of the results of the conference through the media, and an additional grant of $10,000 towards the cost of the book publication. Gulf Oil is assisting with the additional accommodation and living costs of the Soviet delegation which is arriving well before the conference.

Prof. Dove emphasises that this should not be simply a single event on a topic that is then shelved as Science for Peace moves on to other matters. It would be very good if the conference led, e.g., to the formation of a working group within SfP which would maintain an active interest in the Arctic and consider ways to follow up some of the results of the conference.

Welcome and Introduction

Geoffrey Pearson, Canadian Institute for International Peace and Security
Anthony Arrott, Science for Peace

Part I: The Regional and Global Context

Unities of the Arctic Physical Environment
Max J. Dunbar, Institute of Oceanography, McGill University
Industrialization and its Consequences
Terence Armstrong, Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge University
Militarization and the Aboriginal Peoples
Mary Simon, President, Inuit Circumpolar Conference
Political-military Relations among the Ice States
Willy Ostreng, Fridtjof Nansen Institute, Oslo

Part II. The Arms Race and Arms Control

Naval Interaction
Stephen Miller, Center for International Studies, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Missile Defences, Cruise Missiles, and Air Defences
David Cox, Political Studies, Queen’s University
Military Doctrines and Confidence-Building
John Skogan, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, Oslo
Confidence-Building Measures
E.I. Issraelyan, Institute of the USA and Canada, Academy of Sciences of the USSR, Moscow

Part III. Science and Cooperation

Global Science and the Arctic; Status and Prospects
E.E Roots, Environment Canada
Ethnoscience and Prevailing Science
Milton Freeman, Boreal Institute, University of Alberta
Knowledge Requirements for Ocean Management
Anders Stigebrandt, Oceanographic Institute, University of Goteborg
Arctic Airborne Pollution and the Greenhouse Effect
Anders Karlqvist, Polar Research Secretariat, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm

Part IV. Technical and Cultural Cooperation

Exchange of Experience in Arctic Marine Transportation
Arikhinen, All-Union Research Institute for Systems Studies, Academy of Sciences of the USSR, Moscow
Offshore Oil Exploration and Development
Melvin Conant, Conant and Associates, Washington, D.C.
Cultural Exchanges
Carl Christian Olsen, Council Member, Inuit Circumpolar Conference Nuuk
Public Health in the Circumpolar North
Jens Misfeldt, Chief Medical Officer Greenland, Nuuk

Part V. Conclusions

Panel: Opportunities and Constraints on Arctic Cooperation
Arkady Cherkasov, Institute of the USA and Canada and Oran Young, Center for Northern Studies, Wolcott, Vermont
Panel: Interrelations between Non-military Cooperation and Confidence-Building
Franklyn Griffiths, Political Science, University of Toronto and Kari Mottola, Finnish Institute of International Affairs, Helsinki

Panel: Agenda for Arctic Cooperation