Although part of a broader circumpolar world, North America’s Arctic and sub-Arctic borders—and the establishment of new boundaries in the wake of significant, and regionally unique, change—are increasingly relevant in the broader, global world.
Indeed, the Arctic reality has been dramatically reshaped by new territorial configurations and comprehensive land claims; increasing flows of international investment and trade focused upon resource industries and hydrocarbon extraction; the growing importance and role of sub-national entities, organizations, and Indigenous governments; shifting geopolitical interests; and existential challenges created by climate change and environmental security.
This book demonstrates how North America’s Arctic borders are being reshaped by globalization even as these borders are adjusting to new internal pressures such as devolution and the rise of sub-national territorial interests.
About the authors
Heather Nicol is Professor of Geography in the School of the Environment and Director of the School for the Study of Canada at Trent University. Nicol was the 2015–2016 Fulbright Visiting Research Chair in Arctic Studies at the University of Washington.
Andrew Chater is Professor of Humanities (limited term) at Brescia University. He is a Fellow at Polar Research and Policy Initiative. He was the 2019–2020 North American and Arctic Defense and Security Network (NAADSN) Postdoctoral Fellow, and the 2018–2019 Fulbright Visiting Research Chair in Arctic Studies at the University of Washington.
P. Whitney Lackenbauer is associate professor and chair of the Department of History at St. Jerome's University in the University of Waterloo, and a faculty associate with the LCMSDS.
Peter Kikkert recently completed his M.A. at the University of Waterloo and is a Ph.D. student in history at the University of Western Ontario.
Excerpt: North America's Arctic Borders: A World of Change (edited by Heather Nicol & Andrew Chater; contributions by Karen G. Everett, P. Whitney Lackenbauer & Justin Barnes)
“In some ways it is clear that Northern borders in Canada are exceptional. There are issues of climate change and environmental disruptions, geopolitics, international law, colonial legacies, economic development and governance that are unique. All of these influence the way in which borders are both imagined and managed.”
“Today, the tide has turned in terms of the growing political clout of Indigenous organizations. In the North American North, as elsewhere in the circumpolar region, many Indigenous peoples have become actors on a larger stage, and are being remapped onto larger national and international organizations levels of consultation, discussion and action.”
“Canadian and American security agencies seek greater levels of transnational cooperation in the North, precisely because of the cross-border nature of 21st century security threats triggered by large existential threats such as environmental instability related to climate change (Kee 2019, Kee et al. 2019). Climate change, melting ice, and increased shipping and maritime activities have thus contributed to speculation about future tensions and territorial conflict in the North, as well as highlighted the need for assurances of cooperation.”
Other titles by P. Whitney Lackenbauer
Understanding Sovereignty and Security in the Circumpolar Arctic
Canada’s Founding Debates, 1864-1999
Roots of Entanglement
Essays in the History of Native-Newcomer Relations
China's Arctic Ambitions and What They Mean for Canada
Navigating Northern Environmental History
A Historical and Legal Study of Sovereignty in the Canadian North
Terrestrial Sovereignty, 1870-1939
Blockades or Breakthroughs?
Aboriginal Peoples Confront the Canadian State
The Dundurn Arctic Culture and Sovereignty Library
Pike's Portage/Death Wins in the Arctic/Arctic Naturalist/Arctic Obsession/Arctic Twilight/Arctic Front/Canoeing North Into the Unknown/Arctic Revolution/In the Shadow of the Pole/Voices From the Odeyak
The Canadian Rangers
A Living History
In the National Interest
Canadian Foreign Policy and the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, 1909-2009