Nordic index review

Lead Author Ivan, Tarasov
Institution Contact Institute of Social and Political Sciences, NARFU. Arkhangelsk, Dzerginskogo st. 29-32
Theme Theme 2: Vulnerability of Arctic Societies
Session Name 2.2 Resource development and building capacity in Arctic communities
Presentation Type Poster
Abstract text The problem of definition and fixing northern territories in the scientific and regulatory terms is typical for circumpolar countries including Russia.
Nevertheless, there`s no clear and harmonized interdisciplinary decision of this problem. Different methods from insolation to geobotanic exist. Canadian scientist Louis-Edmond Hamelin made an attempt to unite various approaches. He created Nordic index that includes geographic, climatic and social criteria. The main feature of this index is that it`s intended to evaluate namely human settlements and towns, rather than territory.
In this work we apply Nordic index to more than 40 largest cities in Circumpolar region. Analysis of the final results of VAPO (polar units or valeurs polaire) showed cities ranking with min in Juneau (Alaska) and max in Longyearbyen (Svalbard, Norway). But distribution of cities between min and max has some anomalies: Reykjavik has relatively large VAPO 252, but Boden and Kiruna - only 212 and 174 VAPO. This and some other anomalies and the fact that we can't distinguish any typology in ranging cities by Nordic index isn't accidental. It`s a system error that occurs when we transfer Canadian Nordic index to all Circumpolar world. Each Arctic region has its own characteristics and Canadian conditions aren`t average or typical. So, we need to rebalance Louis-Edmond Hamelin index.
To identify criteria which application causes deviations we analyzed mean values of each criteria and the weight of the total amount. It showed that criteria “Summer heart”, “Total precipitation”, “Accessibillity other than by air” and “ Air services” have a relatively small value.
According with these and several other refinements original Nordic index was adjusted.
After recount VAPO for some Arctic cities we recognized six groups with lots of similar characteristics. This allows us to create typology of Northern cities by their key features. It may promote to reveal northern cities` peculiarities displaying their common characteristics.
So, the next scientific aim is to elaborate economic and social parts within this typology which help us to explain patterns in social and economic processes inside Northern cities.