Nordia Geographical Publications (Jan 2011)

Participation of non–state actors in Arctic environmental governance

  • Sébastien Duyck

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 40, no. 4


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This legal paper considers procedures and formal opportunities offered to various groups of non-state actors to participate in international environmental decisionmaking in the Arctic Region. The current regime of Arctic governance, with the Arctic Council playing a central role, offers a unique status to indigenous people as a key group of rights-holders in the region. While this particularity of Arctic governance has been well covered by academic work, the participation of other groups of stakeholders – including non-governmental organizations, the private sector or local governments – has been the focus of fewer studies. The first section of the paper presents in a more general context the rights and roles attributed to stakeholders in international environmental decision-making. The second section introduces a descriptive analysis of the rules and practices formally offering an opportunity for various groups of stakeholders to take part in the work of the Arctic Council, while the third section considers rights and procedures allowing participation in other regional processes involving environmental decision making.