Arctic Yearbook 2014 - Page 477

  Commentary “STRATEGIC ASSESSMENT OF DEVELOPMENT OF THE ARCTIC: ASSESSMENT CONDUCTED FOR THE EUROPEAN UNION” –THE EU-ARCTIC NEXUS AND A MORE BALANCED PICTURE OF ARCTIC DEVELOPMENTS FOR THE EUROPEAN AUDIENCES Adam Stepien The 2014 issue of the Arctic Yearbook focuses on human capital in the North, and thus, on local capacities and human development. This resonates well with a number of assessment projects currently carried out in the region. By the end of 2014, the Arctic Human Development Report II is scheduled to be published. Within the Arctic Council, projects such as the large scale Adaptation Actions for a Changing Arctic assessment or smaller activities dedicated for example to gender equality, take up a number of issues crucial for human capital in the North. The “Strategic Assessment of Development of the Arctic” report – published in September 2014 – fits well to this increased attention to the human dimension. It is these human-centred aspects of the assessment that are here highlighted. The readers of this year’s Arctic Yearbook may find the “Strategic Assessment” chapters dedicated to mining, land use activities and socio-cultural changes particularly interesting. The report focuses on the European Arctic (including Greenland and northwest Russia) and analyses development trends in the region, drivers and impacts of Arctic changes, and does so taking into account environmental, social, economic and political dimensions. Against this Adam Stepien is a Researcher at the Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Finland. Stepien is one of the Editors of the “Strategic Assessment of Development of the Arctic” report available at