Arctic Yearbook 2014 - Page 479

479 Arctic Yearbook 2014 footprint as well as the EU’s influence on international processes of relevance for the Arctic (for example the Polar Code or CITES). One must keep in mind that there is a comparatively limited interest in the Arctic affairs within the EU. Taking into account the EU’s role in the region, sustaining an ongoing long-term commitment of the EU to the Arctic affairs and sensitizing the EU policy-makers to Arctic particularities is in fact in the interest of Arctic communities, nations and stakeholders and should be encouraged rather than discouraged. Building on ideas coming from stakeholders, the report offers a number of recommendations for the EU policy-makers. Many of these recommendations touch upon human dimension in regional development and enhancing human capital in the European North. For instance, the EU is urged to develop instruments specifically addressing the needs of Arctic cities. Although relatively small in size, northern towns play a role similar to that of major population centres in central Europe. The policy-makers should also continue to facilitate entrepreneurship and innovation (including social innovations) in the region, but with increasing focus on women and dynamic indigenous youth. A greater attention to intra-regional connectivity rather than only North-South links is needed, as it contributes to building northern knowledge- and entrepreneurship-based economies. A separate chapter in the report analyses various activities relevant for the land use in the European Arctic, highlighting cumulative impacts as well as both tensions and synergies between developments. In the light of these tensions, properly designed mechanisms for resolving conflicts are crucial, as the social capital is founded primarily on trust both within and between communities. Improved and integrated impact assessments, especially if they include a strong social dimension, as well as participatory mechanisms are among the key suggested responses. The EU policy-makers need to take into account diversity within the Arctic region and pay special attention to the European Arctic, where the EU has the greatest leverage. It seems inevitable that the EU policy-makers will have to keep balance between the internal and external aspects and look for golden mean between the extremes of artificial coherence and failure to properly coordinate between numerous branches of EU Arctic policy. However, what is also important is that the EU communicates clearly – as it is not always the case in the EU policy documents – when its actions refer to EU’s internal or external affairs and to the European Arctic or circumpolar level. Editors of the “Strategic Assessment of Development of the Arctic” report: Adam Stepien, Timo Koivurova, Paula Kankaanpää (Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Finland) Lead authors: Sigmar Arnarsson (UiT Arctic University of Norway), Kim van Dam (Arctic Centre, University of Groningen, the Netherlands), Debra Justus (Pierre and Marie Curie University, France), Kirsi Latola (Thule Institute of the University of Oulu, Finland, University of the Arctic Thematic Networks), Michał Łuszczuk (Committee of Polar Research – Polish Academy of Sciences), Gunnar Sander (Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre, Norway), Annette Scheepstra (Arctic Centre, University of Groningen, the Netherlands), Adam Stepien (Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Finland), Mikko Strahlendorff (Finnish Meteorological Institute). The EU-Arctic Nexus