The scramble for the Arctic is on. As Canada prepares to take up the chairmanship of the Arctic Council this year, new state and non-state actors are staking their claims to the region, as melting ice creates new risks and opportunities for development. Will these competing claims result in conflict? This OpenCanada.org In Depth considers the different agendas of the various stakeholders and asks whether clashing interests in the region are inevitable or whether cooler heads will prevail under Canada’s watch.

We'll be adding content to this page on an ongoing basis, so stay tuned.

When the Ice is Gone

Real Arctic security won't come from enforcing Canada's right to extract natural resources from the Arctic argues Wilfrid Greaves.

Why We Aren’t Ready for an Active Arctic

The North is opening up to both economic development and tourism. But Canada and the U.S. lack the capacity to deal with this influx of activity argues Andreas Østhagen.

Neither Conflict nor “Use It or Lose It”

Elizabeth Riddell-Dixon challenges conceptions of the Arctic as a realm of contestation rather than cooperation.

The (Russian) Arctic is Open for Business

Michael Byers on Canada and Russia's divergent approaches to the Arctic.

Arctic Council Warms Toward Asia

James Manicom and Whitney Lackenbauer on why the decision to grant Asian states access to the Arctic Council is the right one.

Are We Ready?

Canada's North is opening up. What does that mean for search and rescue operations there?

The Weight of History in the Arctic

Shelagh Grant on why the history of the Arctic is relevant to today’s debates over the future of Arctic sovereignty.

Should Canada Push Arctic Development?

OpenCanada asked representatives of Arctic peoples and states whether economic development is the right priority for Canada to advance in the North.

The Military Goes North

OpenCanada talked to a DND official about how the Canadian Forces can play an important role in the Arctic.

Showing Leadership in the Arctic

Canada will have two years as chair of the Arctic Council to make its mark on Arctic governance, says Jennifer Welsh.

2013: A Decisive Year for Canada's Arctic Ambitions

Rob Huebert on why this is a make-or-break year for Canada as the country tries to extend its influence in the Arctic.

Arctic Boom Times

Could the Arctic Ocean become "an emerging epicenter of industry and trade akin to the Mediterranean"? Scott G. Borgerson makes the case for Foreign Affairs.

China's Arctic Play

Since gaining its Arctic Council observer status in May, China has been pushing ahead on multiple fronts, funding greater research, setting up more scientific polar institutes, and backing state-owned mining projects of iron-ore fields.

New Arctic, New Coast Guard

Captain Peter Troedsson for CFR on how the U.S. Coast Guard should be utilized in the opening Arctic: "It is vitally important not to confuse maritime constabulary operations with defense or combat operations."

North to the Arctic

Given the extreme and often dangerous conditions, why are so many companies focused on extracting oil and gas in the Arctic? According to David Burwell for the Huffington Post, government regulation is driving the development of reserves in the far north.

Hagel, Kerry, and Brennan Senate Confirmation Hearings: U.S. Policy on Arctic Security

Luke Coffey, for the Heritage Foundation, on why President Obama cannot ignore the Arctic and the top three U.S. policy priorities in the region.

In the series

2013_05_China-and-the-Arctic.jpg

Arctic Council Warms Toward Asia

James Manicom and Whitney Lackenbauer on why the decision to grant Asian states access to the Arctic Council is the right one
2013_05_Are-We-Ready2.jpg

Are We Ready?

Canada's North is opening up. What does that mean for search and rescue operations there?
2013_02_The-Weight-of-History-in-the-Arctic.jpg

The Weight of History in the Arctic

Shelagh Grant on why the history of the Arctic is relevant to today’s debates over the future of Arctic sovereignty.
2013_02_Projecting-Power-Northward.jpg

The Military Goes North

OpenCanada talked to a DND official about how the Canadian Forces can play an important role in the Arctic.
2013_01_Northern-Ambitions.jpg

2013: A Decisive Year for Canada's Arctic Ambitions

Rob Huebert on why this is a make-or-break year for Canada in the Arctic.

When the Ice is Gone

Real Arctic security won't come from enforcing Canada's right to extract natural resources from the Arctic argues Wilfrid Greaves.
Managing-Risk-in-the-Arctic.jpg

Why We Aren't Ready for an Active Arctic

The North is opening up to both economic development and tourism. But Canada and the U.S. lack the capacity to deal with this influx of activity argues Andreas Østhagen.
2013_09_ArcticTanker646.jpg

Neither Conflict nor “Use It or Lose It”

Elizabeth Riddell-Dixon challenges conceptions of the Arctic as a realm of contestation rather than cooperation.
2013_01_Showing-Leadership-in-the-Arctic.jpg

Showing Leadership in the Arctic

Canada will have two years as chair of the Arctic Council to make its mark on Arctic governance, says Jennifer Welsh.