Hosted the most important conference in the world on Polar Law

Climate change, indigenous peoples rights and Polar bear protection. These issues – and many more - were on the agenda when the 11th Polar Law Symposium took place at The Faculty of Law /JCLOS. – The level of legal scholarship is extremely high at UiT and JCLOS, says the initiators of the symposium.

From the first session of the Polar Law Symposium at UiT in October. Foto: T. H. Moe

The symposium, said to be "the most important conference in the world on Polar Law and Policy", has been held annualy since its launch in Akureyri, Iceland in September 2008. This year is the first time the conference is held in Norway.

The conference brought together established scholars and researchers from all across the world to share research in the fields of polar law and policy. In Tromsø, they discussed a series of issues such as the rights of indigenous peoples in the Arctic, governance of maritime areas, climate law and the Polar Regions, sustainable development in the regions and different aspects of justice pertaining to these regions.

– Law plays a crucial role in structuring those debates and makes a basis for decision makers, says Professor Timo Koivurova, director of the Arctic Centre at the University of Lapland and one of the initiators of the annual conference.

Professor Timo Koivurova Foto: T. H. Moe


– Had to be Tromsø

He says the committee of the conference had no doubt, when it came to choosing the hosts of the 11 th Polar Law Symposium.

- It was quite clear it had to be Tromsø and The Faculty of Law here. The level of legal scholarship is extremely high at UiT, so the choice was easy when they applied. Especially because of the Jebsen Centre for the Law of the Sea: no matter who you ask, they will say the same, claims professor Koivurova.


Most important conference in Polar Law

 – It is definitely the most important conference in the world in Polar Law. It welcomes anyone with an interest in governance administration and justice,

says Sarah Mackie, a PhD Student from Newcastle University, for the time being a guest researcher at JCLOS, where she studies wildlife protection in Arctic Norway.

Mackie has participated at the symposium once before, and at the symposium in Tromsø, she presented a paper on environmental justice and polar bear protection.

Expands the network

The Director of JCLOS, Professor Tore Henriksen, is very pleased to host the symposium and happy that as many as 130 people attended the conference.

– We see that the conference expands our network, but also that the network might be enriched by increased Norwegian / Tromsø participation. In particular, this has contributed to more contacts working on Antarctica, concludes Henriksen.

Mingling in one the breaks of the conference. Foto: T. H. Moe


Page administrator: Trude Haugseth Moe
Last updated: 15.10.2018 08:53