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Confrontation or cooperation
November 25th, the University of Akureyri
NEXUS, research forum for security and defense
UNAK, Polar Law Institute
Northern Research Forum

On 25 November, the University of Akureyri, NEXUS: a Research Forum on Security and Defence), and the Northern Research Forum - in cooperation with the Icelandic Foreign Ministry - are co-organizing a Conference on Arctic matters. The Conference will be held at the University of Akureyri from 9:00 to 17:00 hours.

Before noon there will be lectures on traditional security, societal security and human rights, as well as environmental security in the Arctic. After lunch, working groups will be formed on these same themes, and will then present their findings in plenary at the end of the day.

The conference will be WebCasted on the Arctic Portal



  • Welcoming speech by Stefán B. Sigurðsson, Rector of University of Akureyri


  • Jónas Gunnar Allansson, Senior Arctic Official, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
    - Setting the agenda


States, citizens and security – chaired by Auður Ingólfsdóttir

  • Jennifer Rhemann, Polar Law MA Candidate, University of Akureyri, Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) Discipline Coordinator for Polar Law and Policy and Council Co-Chair
    - Security Benefits of International Collaboration in Scientific Endeavours and Conservation Efforts
  • Gústav Pétursson, MA in International Relations
    - The High North: A Multidimensional Security Approach
  • Ágúst Þór Árnason, Director of Polar Law Institute
    - Citizenship in a Global Context: Future Perspectives for the 21st Century

10.15 – 10.25
Coffee break

Traditional- and political security – chaired by Alyson Bailes

  • Björn Bjarnason, Former minister of Justice and chair of Varðberg and Samtök um vestræna samvinnu
    - Arctic Security: An Icelandic Perspective
  • Jakob Þór Kristjánsson, PhD student at the University of Iceland
    - Security Dilemma in the High North, is a Resource War Looming?
  • Margrét Cela, PhD student at the University of Lapland
    - Traditional security in the official policies of the Arctic eight

11.15 -11.20
Coffee break

Environmental- and energy security – chaired by Jennifer Rhemann

  • Auður Ingólfsdóttir, Assistant professor, Bifröst University
    - Climate Change and Environmental Security in the Arctic: Links between geopolitical concerns and local challenges
  • Húni Hallsson, Project Manager, Polar law Institute
    - Arctic shipping: Evaluation of risks and benefits
  • Guðmundur Egill Erlendsson, ML and LL.M in Polar Law, Associate at Lögmannsstofa Akureyrar, and Freelance scholar
    - Energy Security Issues in the North: Viable Alternatives and Extreme Measures
  • Soffia Guðmundsdóttir, Pame
    - To be announced
  • Tom Barry, Executive Director of CAFF (Concervation of Arctic Flaura and Fauna) & Eydís Líndal Finnbogadóttir, Manager of Geographic Information Systems at the National Land Survey of Iceland
    - Monitoring in the Arctic and the Arctic Spatial Data Infrastructure project

Lunch break

Working groups begin

  • Working group 1 – States, citizens and security:
    chaired by Jóhanna Þórdísardóttir, MA in International Relations
  • Working group 2 – Geopolitics and traditional security:
    chaired by Gústav Pétursson
  • Working group 3 – Environmental and energy security:
    chaired by Jennifer Rhemann

15.00 – 15.20:
Coffee break

15.20 - 16.40
Group presentations. Each presentation should take 10-15 minutes followed by
10 – 15 minutes discussion. Chaired by Margrét Cela

Alyson Bailes, Adjunct Professor, University of Iceland
- Closing remarks

Closing and thank you remarks from NEXUS (Margrét Cela Chair of NEXUS), UNAK, NRF and MFA Followed by reception