Outlook to the Future: Coastal Arctic Scenarios

CCRD14 Elective 4 ECTS
Period 2 weeks 05.10.2020 - 16.10.2020
Instructor Adam Stepien


This course centers on different future scenarios regarding the Arctic. Different stakeholder groups, their views and interests in the Arctic will be presented and discussed. Pressing themes, such as minority and indigenous rights, resource use and extraction, political development and international cooperation will be explored through theories and methodologies such as strategic foresight and strategic impact assessments (SIA). Students will thus be equipped with the ability to develop critical thinking about ongoing economic, political and social changes and their implications. The course will draw on existing academic outputs and apply practical ‘tools-based’ exercises.


On completion of the course, a student:

  • can explain how foresight techniques can make innovation, regional development and marine policies more robust.
  • can identify the change processes at play in the Coastal Arctic and understand their characteristics.
  • can analyse the interrelationships between drivers and be able to consider their impacts.
  • can test new business ideas against alternative versions of the future.
  • can test ways of regional development policies and marine management policies against alternative versions of the future.
  • has demonstrated ability in communicating foresight techniques to stakeholders in an exemplified marine management or regional development situation.


Adam Stepien is political scientist working at the Arctic Centre of the University of Lapland in Finland. His research interests include Arctic governance and Arctic cooperation, in particular the role of the EU in the Arctic, which is the topic of his ongoing doctoral project. Mr. Stepien has been involved in a number of policy advice projects for the European Parliament, the European External Action Service and Finland’s Prime Minister’s Office. He authored articles, book chapters and reports on Arctic Council, Sámi politics, development cooperation with and for indigenous peoples, Arctic economic developments, Nordic Arctic innovation and on the EU Arctic policy. Recently, he has been working on development strategies in Arctic regions and the prospects for innovation, knowledge-based economy and endogenous entrepreneurship promotion in the northernmost part of Europe.