Andrey N. Petrov
This paper presents the key findings of the Creative Arctic Project. It focuses on the geography of creative capital and assesses its ability to foster economic development in the Arctic as an alternative or complement to recourse-based development. The study describes a theoretical conceptualization of the creative capital in the Arctic and provides further insights into the role of the creative capital in the Arctic economy. The paper explains methodologies and analytical tools (systems of measures/indicators) for the analysis of the creative capital as a factor of economic transformation in non-central regions. The study explores and compares geographic patterns of creative capital in the Arctic using spatial analysis techniques and data from all Arctic countries, as well as from two in-depth case study areas: northern Canada and Alaska. It also identifies Arctic regions and communities with sufficient creative capital, where further policy and place-specific studies could be conducted.
The findings suggest that some characteristics of the creative capital observed in Arctic communities are similar to those found in southern regions, whereas others are distinct. In the Arctic, the synergy between cultural economy, entrepreneurship and leadership appear to be more important in characterizing creative capacities that formal education. The geographic distribution of the creative capital is uneven and favors economically, geographically and politically privileged urban centers. However, some remote regions also demonstrate considerable levels of creative potential, in particular associated with Aboriginal cultural capital (artists, crafters, etc.). A number of Arctic regions – creative ‘hot spots’ – could become the test sites for implementing alternative strategies of regional development based on creative capital, knowledge-based and cultural economies.
Maureen Simpkins & Marleny M. Bonnycastle
At the University College of the North, women make up approximately 80% of the student population in the Faculty of Arts and in the Nursing program (UCN, 2012). In the University of Manitoba’s Northern Social Work Program, 87% of students are female. These reflect a trend across Canada, where 3 out of 4 Aboriginal students are female (Holmes, 2006). We know anecdotally and from experience that the majority of those women also have children, many are single-parent mothers and many have responsibilities for their extended family. This means that these students tend to come and go over a number of years rarely finishing a 4 year degree in 4 years. Using “retention rates” typically used by many post-secondary institutions, the “success” of students who don’t follow the traditional 4 year path is made invisible in the statistics. This invisibility leads us to look to other ways of measuring success. In this paper, we try to answer two questions. First, how do female students define and measure their own successes? Second, what factors have contributed to their successes and what impact has their success had on family and community? In answering these questions, insights are provided that underline both the individual and the collective returns of post-secondary education in a northern region.
Kathleen Lahey, Eva-Maria Svensson, & Åsa Gunnarsson
This paper brings critical gender perspectives to the interrogation of northern human capital discourses, most of which tend to deploy gender-neutral concepts in analyzing productive capacities to perform labour and produce measurable economic value. From gendered and Indigenous perspectives, this concept of human capital excludes unpaid work relating to social reproduction, human welfare, and subsistence or in kind production, as well as the value of traditional and indigenous knowledges and processes. In Arctic/northern contexts, burgeoning interest in industrialized resource extraction, transportation, and fisheries affects labour market sectors mainly occupying men, and, not surprisingly, risks intensifying the social, economic, and political marginalization of women and Indigenous peoples.
As members of the TUAQ Arctic Gender Equality Network, the authors approach these issues from governance perspectives, noting that despite state obligations to mainstream gender issues in policy development and to respect Indigenous rights under domestic and international agreements, women’s and indigenous peoples’ voices are largely absent from discussions of the economic, environmental, and human development policies that shape human engagement in relation to the north. This paper outlines governance gaps, gender and indigenous women’s inequalities, and economic imbalances that flow from this situation. The paper concludes with an analysis of how the costs and losses of the ‘paradox of plenty’ borne by women, indigenous, and northern communities can be reversed, and calls on multilateral governance bodies to take firm steps to implement these measures.
Sarah Daitch, Alyssa Schwann, Andrew Bauer, Andre Dias & Julia Fan Li
“Each generation will reap what the former generation has sown” - Chinese Proverb
The Northwest Territories (NWT), Canada’s largest territory, holds significant natural resource potential, most of which is undeveloped. Facing a potential resource boom in minerals, oil and gas, the territory’s government is considering how this finite source of wealth can be harnessed as an engine for development and prosperity. On April 1, 2014 the Devolution Agreement took effect, which transferred control of a portion of resource royalties from the federal Government of Canada to the territorial Government of the Northwest Territories. In 2012, new legislation created a Heritage Fund for the territory, establishing the world’s newest sub-national sovereign wealth fund. This fund aims to bank part of new resource revenues for future generations – but, what governance measures and regulations will be required to ensure the Fund benefits citizens? In February 2014, several authors of this paper co-published a policy report, A Question of Future Prosperity: Developing a Heritage Fund in the Northwest Territories (Briones et al. 2014) outlining key recommendations for the Fund’s implementation. Members of the Legislative Assembly tabled this report in the NWT Legislature, pressing the NWT Finance Minister to commit a higher proportion of revenues to the Fund, and to establish rules for fund management and governance. This paper presents the next phase of an ongoing case study in a public policy research initiative – one that supports regional citizen decision-making on resource governance in Canada’s North. The next steps of effective fund governance, oversight, and accountability require analysis, discussion and meaningful public engagement to ensure the retention of resource wealth in the public’s interest.
Erica M. Dingman
Though the Government of Greenland has its sights on independence through subsurface resource development, numerous impediments may stand in the way of realizing such a future based on a trajectory that depends on rapid foreign investment, favorable market conditions and robust community support. Markets are fickle to say the least, but the value that community members place on cultural, social and traditional economic factors may well unleash public debate into the very nature of the Greenlandic democracy. Indeed, the rising demand for informed and transparent public debate would suggest that unbridled development will not easily come to light without the inclusion of those who are most affected by resource extraction. Focusing on a mounting division between the educated urban elite and less educated rural community members, this article will examine Greenlandic development in the context of equalizing economic, political and social opportunities as primary conditions of democracy.
Communities in the High North, peripheral and of a small scale, struggling for economic self-sufficiency and with a decreasing population, are trying to find new development options and ways to bring in revenues. Tourism has proven to be one of the options, but not all places respond in an equal way. When talking about the development of tourism at a regional scale, local communities are rarely, involved in the tourism planning process. Indeed, tourism is a way to develop something that has an important component, “the human capital”, where the relationship between tourism development and community dynamics directly involves the local residents.
For local communities, a significant socioeconomic factor is the proportion of tourism income that can be captured by the local economy. Such income is generated through employment in tourism-related services, such as food and lodging, gasoline, local tour guiding, and selling of souvenirs. Small tourism businesses can often be a good option for young men and women. In this paper, after an overview about the development of tourism in Greenland, I present the achievements and drawbacks of three peripheral Greenlandic communities: Ukkusissat, Narsaq, and Qaanaaq, which are trying to develop tourism as a possible source of additional income. Specifically, I discuss the role of the local person in charge of tourism, the lack of information and access to resources for the local population. The three cases presented here are derived from field work and research projects done in Greenland at different points of time.