Brussels, 11 September 2014

Understanding the EU’s impact on the Arctic starts with an efficient and effective use of scientific and fact-based information. Combining this scientific understanding with Arctic stakeholders’ in-depth knowledge and experience is crucial in properly addressing the challenges the Arctic will face. Only by effectively applying this information and engaging stakeholders from all backgrounds and levels (local, regional and global) can one fully comprehend the complexity of the changes happening in the Arctic and create a roadmap for the sustainable development of the region.

The EU aims to be on the front lines when it comes to fostering sustainable Arctic development. By combining the different viewpoints of a wide variety of Arctic stakeholders, the EU-funded “Strategic Environmental Impact Assessment of development of the Arctic” project has helped to clarify some of the most important Arctic development trends. This seminar will discuss the role of the EU in the Arctic, as well as the role of the Arctic in the EU. It will investigate information-sharing, policy-making and decision-making with the aim of further bridging current gaps between the Arctic and the EU.

In the opening policy session of the seminar, four keynote speakers will present their unique perspectives of the Arctic, after which, a number of experts will lead engaging discussions on the important ongoing developments in the region. In the afternoon, members of the EUAIC consortium will present the results of the project’s insightful assessments, and examine information and communication gaps about the Arctic. The consortium will also present a compendium that outlines current Arctic initiatives and projects going on in European countries.

11 September 2014 

09:00 – 09:10 Opening & welcome  
Hannu Halinen, Arctic Ambassador of Finland
09:10 - 09:30 The Arctic from the Perspective of the North
Erkki Tuomioja, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland
09:35 - 09:55 The Arctic from the Perspective of the EU
Luis Felipe Fernández de la Peña, Managing Director for Europe and Central Asia, European External Action Service
10:00 - 10:20 International Cooperation in the Arctic: The Canadian Perspective
Alan Bowman, Deputy Head of Mission, Mission of Canada to the European Union
10:25 - 10:45 People in the Arctic
Lars Anders Baer, Senior member of the Working Group of Indigenous Peoples, Barents Euro-Arctic Council
10:45 - 11:15 Coffee break
11:15 - 11:25 EU Arctic Information Centre - feasibility analysis
Paula Kankaanpää, Director, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland
11:30 - 12:00 Role of EU in the Arctic
Panel of Members of the European Parliament:
Chair Markku Heikkilä, Head of Science Communication, Arctic Center, University of Lapland
Anneli Jäätteenmäki, MEP
Jens Nilsson, MEP
Liisa Jaakonsari, MEP
12:00 - 13:00 Lunch
13:00 - 13:45 Role of information in decision making and Arctic policies
Panel of the EUAIC Network
Chair Björn Dahlbäck, Director, Swedish Polar Research Secretariat
Roberto Azzolini, European Polar Board, European Science Foundation
Jean-Claude Gascard, Pierre and Marie Curie University
Liisa Holmberg, Sámi Education Institute
Peter Harris, GRID-Arendal
Nicole Biebow, Alfred Wegener Institute
Halldór Jóhannsson, Arctic Portal
Heather Lane, Scott Polar Research Institute
13:50 - 14:00 Strategic Assessment of development of the Arctic
Adam Stępień, Researcher, Impact Assessment Expert, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland
14:00 - 15:00 Arctic Trends
Climate change in the Arctic
Mikko Strahlendorff, Finnish Meteorological Institute

Changes in Arctic Maritime Transport
Gunnar Sander, Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre

Changing Nature of Arctic Fisheries
Sigmar Arnarsson, UiT Arctic University of Norway

Developing Oil and Gas Resources in Arctic Waters Michał Łuszczuk, Committee of Polar Research – Polish Academy of Sciences

Mining in the European Arctic
Kim van Dam and Annette Scheepstra, Arctic Centre, University of Groningen

Land-Use Pressures in the European Arctic
Kirsi Latola, Thule Institute of the University of Oulu, University of the Arctic Thematic Networks

Social and Cultural Changes in the European Arctic
Adam Stępień, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland
15:00 - 15:10 Conclusions and key messages  
Timo Koivurova, Research Professor, Senior Impact Assessment  Expert, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland

Discussion / Questions from the audience

15:30 - 15:45 Coffee break
15:45 - 15:55 The Arctic initiatives and projects in Europe
Lize-Marie van der Watt, Research Coordinator, Swedish Polar Research Secretariat
15:55 - 16:05 Information and communication gaps regarding the Arctic
Arne Riedel, Researcher, Ecologic Institute
16:05 - 16:15 Assessments in policy making in the Arctic
Małgorzata Śmieszek, Researcher, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland
16:15 - 16:45 Discussion and closing
17:00 - 18:00 Reception

Practical Information 

Internationaal Perscentrum “Residence Palace”


Centre de Presse internationale “Résidence Palace”


Wetstraat 155 | 155 Rue de la Loi


1040 Brussel | 1040 Bruxelles


Tel: 00-32-(0)2-235.21.01


Getting there by car

When you arrive at the Résidence Palace, the car park “Wet/Loi” (p2) is closest. The entrance to the car park is at Etterbeeksesteenweg 25, 1040  Brussels. The car park is open Mondays to Fridays from 6:30 to 22:00.


By train



The Résidence Palace is right above Schuman station. This makes rail the most convenient way of getting to the International Press Centre. Follow the signs saying ‘Résidence Palace’ in the station and leave by the Wetstraat exit. This brings you right opposite the main entrance to the International Press Centre.


By metro
Take lines 1 or 5 to Schuman station. This station is just below the Résidence  Palace. Follow the signs saying ‘Résidence Palace’ in the station and leave by the Wetstraat exit. This brings you right opposite the main entrance to the International Press Centre.

More information on Registration to the event will be provided by the beginning of August


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