Our Work

As Alaska’s Center for Arctic Policy, the Institute of the North provides strategic direction for the state as it considers and implements its approach to the Arctic at a local, regional, national and international level. We are a clearinghouse of information, able to share best practices from other Arctic nations and connect to a circumpolar network of Arctic experts. We are grounded in Alaskan priorities and perspectives as related to socio-economic development, governance and the human dimension. We facilitate greater public awareness at home and abroad, helping to convey the reality, richness and responsibility of living, working and learning in the Arctic region.

The Institute of the North’s founder believed that the development of commonly-owned resources, if managed for the benefit of the people, should result in individual prosperity and public benefit.

The Institute of the North is a non-partisan policy center that provides best practices from around the Circumpolar North to address critical challenges and take advantage of timely opportunities stemming from an increasingly active region. The Institute hosts initiatives that cross sectors and jurisdictions to empower northern peoples, increasing knowledge of northern issues at local, national and international levels of governance while strengthening Alaskans’ voices in decision-making processes.

Vision: Effective land and resource governance resulting in individual prosperity and public benefit.

Mission: To inform public policy and cultivate an engaged citizenry.

Strategic Focus: Understanding and conveying the opportunities and obligations of the Arctic.

The Institute of the North acts as a convener to facilitate connecting peoples of the circumpolar north to one another; to share new and proven models for addressing common challenges and opportunities; and to cultivate active citizen engagement in Alaska, highlighting northern priorities. The Institute creates partnerships, dialogue and close collaboration across and between communities, governments and the private sector.

The scope of this work is defined by key issue areas:

  • Prudent resource development, land use policy and infrastructure investment – increasing public confidence and enhancing regulatory certainty and Alaska’s competitiveness
  • Frameworks for economic prosperity for the peoples of the North – understanding and working to reduce social, cultural and environmental risk, while applying effective models of impact benefit
  • Local, sub-national, national and circumpolar Arctic policy – meaningful involvement of rightsholders in planning for, development and implementation of Arctic policy and strategy

Priority Activities:

  • Governance – exploration of best practices related to local, sub-national and national decision-making
  • Energy and mineral development – membership network and biennial summits on these topics
  • Response and transportation infrastructure – research and Arctic Council projects
  • Regional and international relationship building – strengthening communications
  • Outreach and education – building awareness in Alaska and the United States