The Polar View

The Arctic Blog

A blog dedicated to current problems in the Arctic region. Our bloggers examine Russian and foreign interests in the Arctic as well as how conflicts between them can affect regional security and stability. The blog places special emphasis on the development of the Arctic and the role that international cooperation could play in scientific research projects, the management of transport routes and the protection of the region’s sensitive ecosystem. Additionally, the blog raises important questions about the exploitation of Arctic resources, increased traffic through northern sea routes and the development of the Russian Arctic’s vast potential.

New entries

April 22, 2015

III. Canada   Stephen Harper: the rise and fall of Canada's defence budget   Since coming to power in 2006, Canada’s Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper has made support for the military the centrepiece of his campaign to…

April 21, 2015

Canada took over the rotating chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2013 for the first time since its inauguration in 1998. The Council, however, could hardly be described as the same forum that it was in the ’90s. The organisation has…

April 15, 2015

Arctic current publications often overlook France-Russia relations in the Arctic, though cooperation between the two countries in Northern latitudes is more than five hundred year-old. In 1586, the French explorer Jean Sauvage arrived in Arkhangelsk…

April 1, 2015

II. Nordic Countries   Shared history and, to a certain extent, culture bind the five smallest and least populous countries of the Arctic Council together. The Nordic countries enjoy close political and cultural ties, as demonstrated by their…

March 31, 2015

  The Ukrainian crisis has undermined Russia’s relations with its Western partners in almost all spheres of cooperation, including in the Arctic region. As a result, Russia reinforced its relations and established new partnerships with…

March 25, 2015

  Nearly three years ago, Department Director at IMEMO and RIAC member Andrei Zagorsky went against the grain. He did not believe, as many did, that the Arctic has been witnessing a new period of militarisation due to increased tension over the…

March 18, 2015

Russia and Canada are the two largest Arctic countries. Three-quarters of the Arctic Ocean’s coastlines belong to Russia and Canada. Russia, with an Arctic coastline stretching over 20,000 km2[i], is the biggest Arctic state. The population of…

March 12, 2015

 Russia and its Arctic Neighbours: After Crimea    Russia’s internationally condemned annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula changed not only international perceptions of Russia’s ambitions, but those in the…

March 11, 2015

The purpose of this article is to examine Norway’s initiative of creating a Nordic Defense Alliance in the Arctic and the consequences it may have for Russia and Arctic cooperation.Author: Elodie Testa, Research Intern at RIAC, graduate student at…

Poll conducted

  1. In your opinion, what are the US long-term goals for Russia?
    U.S. wants to establish partnership relations with Russia on condition that it meets the U.S. requirements  
     33 (31%)
    U.S. wants to deter Russia’s military and political activity  
     30 (28%)
    U.S. wants to dissolve Russia  
     24 (22%)
    U.S. wants to establish alliance relations with Russia under the US conditions to rival China  
     21 (19%)
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