Arctic Yearbook 2014 - Page 554

Arctic Yearbook 2014 554 is an important relationship between development and foreign policy. It builds upon what then Defence Minister Gordon O’Connor stated in 2006, that: The basic problem in these [Arctic maritime boundary] disputes is a matter of resources - who owns which resources. For instance, let’s take the Beaufort Sea. We may declare that a boundary goes to the Beaufort Sea in one position and the Americans in another. If a country wanted to drill for oil in the Beaufort Sea, and there's a lot of oil and gas there, they, at the moment, if they’re in this disputed area, wouldn't know who to approach, whether it’s the United States in Canada to get drilling rights. So these sort of things have to get resolved (Vongdouangchanh, 2006). The ‘sorts of things’ O’Conner referenced represented international challenges to Canada’s historical understandings of state territory in the Arctic, particularly in the Arctic Ocean. Speaking from an international studies perspective, Palosaari (2011: 18) placed this in broader perspective, arguing that “when the state sovereignty perspective is more specifically focused on the Arctic, the impact of ice retreat on issues that concern the national interest gets highlighted.” What Palosaari referred to was what was then looming as a competitive basis for international relations in the Arctic Ocean. While much writing ensued on the North, it came largely from an International Relations scholarship where regimes, cooperation and conflict, international law and political order (see Wegge 2011; Young 2012) were the dominant issues. While some of these issues were also covered in Canadian Studies literature, what we might consider to be a Canadian Studies approach to the Canadian North still retained a distinctive interest in specific national issues and approaches, such as questions about the relationships embodied in understandings of identity, counterpoising development and environment, indigenous knowledge, and focused upon establishing sovereignty in the North. It remains somewhat distinctive from this larger approach to the North which examines relationships between state agency, environment, and geopolitics. Grounded in a distinctive school or thought, historically, the Canadian Studies literature suggests that the North suffers from the tension of being both a frontier for resource development that defines national interests and a homeland for indigenous communities, based upon narratives of environment and development first articulated in the 1970s (see Nicol 2013; Berger 1977). It is a literature concerned with history, national history and exploration, colonization, and redemption. It was not just a region, it had a meaning. Indeed, the Arctic was even understood to be a masculine space in terms of the Victorian era, where hardy men tested their prowess against nature’s worst (see Dittmer et al. 2011) Beginning from the perspective of a foundational Canadian Studies approach to the North, this report examines the way in which the changing landscape of economic development has been explored in the region. The problem becomes one of tracing how the literature has dealt with issues of development from the perspective of indigenous involvement in expanding economic investment and opportunity. For the most past, the Canadian Studies literature has been more absorbed with identifying and critiquing enduring colonial structures in the North, with little attention paid to how and where such structures have changed. While Berger’s frontier/homeland metaphor remains the bedrock of such a literature, Berger’s 2003 analysis of the existing development landscape is less studied (Campbell, Fenge & Hanson 2011). It is this Everett & Nicol