The Arctic is characterized by micro or small states, proto-states and societies. All these societies, therefore, have very limited absolute capabilities. They are of differing levels of development, so their relative capabilities are of widely differing nature. This paper looks at the cases of Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland. Iceland is an example of a socio-economically (except the recent financial crisis) very successful Arctic micro state indicated by its very high level of human development. The Faroe Islands and Greenland are overseas autonomies of the Kingdom of Denmark and on the trajectory to ever expanding self-government.The method of this study is longitudinal structured focused comparison between Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland since the onset of Icelandic independence politics in late 1800s. This comparison will look at how these societies historically and currently have faced the challenges of their very limited absolute capabilities in terms of very small organizations with very limited possibilities for internal specialization and very limited financial (tax) bases. This comparison will also look at how currently changes such as globalization and climate change are faced by these micro societies. Finally the comparison will also look into the future of how these micro societies can face accelerating and deepening globalization, regional integration (such as EU membership for Iceland) and climate change with increasing energy exploration and transportation.The longitudinal structured, focused comparison of Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland, shows the centrality of domestic and foreign education and brain circulation for the self-rule or independence and socio-economic and human development of Arctic micro states. The long and successful case of Iceland shows the importance of historically domestic primary and secondary education coupled with tertiary education abroad and brain circulation and later domestic higher education for creating the human capital for political independence and socio-economic and human development. These lessons are repeated for the Faroe Islands and Greenland, where the advanced state for the Faroe Islands and less advanced state for Greenland highlights the importance of domestic and foreign education and brain circulation for the self-government and socio-economic and human development of Arctic micro states.
|Publication status||Published - 2013|