The North American Arctic (NAA) is a distinct subregion of the Arctic, with vast territories, extreme environmental conditions, small and remote communities, complex governance and significant resource constraints. There is an urgent need for stronger east-to-west cooperation among regional and national governments, Indigenous organizations, business, academia and other stakeholders to build the region’s prosperity.
In February 2018, working closely with the Labrador North and Baffin Regional Chambers of Commerce, the Centre for International Governance Innovation hosted the “CIGI Summit of North American Arctic Leaders” — two special panel discussions exploring ways to foster this cooperation and strengthen dialogue among stakeholders. These panels occurred during the Northern Lights 2018 Business and Cultural Showcase, a four-day event in Ottawa bringing together more than 1,200 participants from across the country and around the world. The first panel featured the political leadership of the NAA; the second brought together experts in marine development and infrastructure.
This conference report describes the summit’s key themes, priorities and takeaways.