The Arctic Council: Vision, structure and participation

FNI Report 4/2016. Lysaker, FNI, 2016, 13 p.

The last years have seen a widening of the Arctic Council’s (AC) agenda as well as an increasing number of participants in its activities. The main question in this paper is what the AC, including the Working Groups (WGs), can do to adapt to these developments. The paper draws on discussions with key persons at the Council and in the Working Groups, and earlier analyses and reviews In this respect three key points are discussed: - How to establish a more coherent and clearer vision for work at the Council? - How to strengthen coordination between the bodies of the AC? - How to accommodate and benefit from local, regional, and global stakeholders? Three suggestions are presented in this paper. i) to formulate a comprehensive vision for the Arctic at an Arctic Summit, ii) set up an expert panel to look at the question of coordination and restructuring, and iii) arrange an annual Arctic Week in the capital of the country holding the current chairmanship.