This symposium will take place 17-18 May 2021, 8:30-11:30 a.m. AKDT (12:30-3:30 p.m. EDT). This event will be live-streamed online.

Over two half-days, The Arctic in 25 Years symposium will gather emerging Arctic leaders to inform and influence potential Arctic policy for the next generation. Panelists represent all eight Arctic countries, as well as Indigenous peoples who live there. Based on the research they conducted, policies they coordinated, as well as traditional lifestyles and subsistence missions they’ve led, youth leaders will discuss the Arctic they envision for the future and the actions needed to achieve it. Join the Wilson Center’s Polar Institute, with Arctic Frontiers and the Permanent Participants of the Arctic Council (supported by the Indigenous Peoples’ Secretariat), for the first annual International Youth Symposium, The Arctic in 25 Years.

Read the full program here and register here

The symposium will include:

Panel 1: Arctic Council Permanent Participant Youth – Representatives from the 1st Arctic Youth Leaders’ Summit (Rovaniemi 2019) will discuss the importance of cross-border collaboration between Indigenous youth. Based on the Arctic Youth Leaders’ Summit declaration, panelists will identify the policy priorities that galvanize Indigenous youth across the circumpolar Arctic. Some topics of discussion include environment, economic development, food sovereignty, Indigenous Knowledge, and mental health.

Panel 2: Infrastructure and sustainable development – How might a just transition look in Arctic economies? Panelists will discuss growing interest in Arctic economic development, including shipping, resource extraction, and foreign investment. Considering the impacts of climate change on the Arctic, panelists will discuss what political principles, processes, and practices might accompany the shift from an extractive economy to a regenerative one.

Panel 3: Climate change and biodiversity action and research – Considering the tightly-coupled relationship of Arctic Indigenous peoples with the Arctic environment, co-production of knowledge (innovative research resulting from equitable partnership between scientists, Indigenous Knowledge holders, and other members of society) is particularly useful in climate change and biodiversity research. Panelists will discuss the ways communities and researchers can work together to reduce daily environmental risks and improve quality of life in the Arctic.

Panel 4: Policy & Governance – Youth are not only the leaders of the future, many have already been elected to office, worked in international governance, and contributed to Arctic decision-making. This panel of youth leaders will identify the most important challenges Arctic nations will face in the future, and their actions to mitigate those challenges today. An important takeaway from this panel will be: What new modes of governance and engagement must emerge for the next generation’s prosperity?