Alexandra Middleton

Sweden, Norway and Finland are the countries with advanced economic development and social security systems that are actively implementing UN Agenda 2030. In this study I investigate Arctic human security in the northern regions of Sweden, Norway and Finland. Human security is constructed as “proclaimed” or stated in the official documents and as “experienced” by people. I study proclaimed human security in the Arctic reflected in national human security agendas and human security coverage in the national Arctic strategies. Experienced human security construct incorporates objective measures of economic, health and personal security. Economic security is measured as disposable income and poverty risk. Health human security is measured as tertiary education attainment and hospital beds available per 1000 people. Personal human security is proxied by crime rates by type of criminal offences (e.g. traffic, sexual). The results of the study indicate that human security is presented strongly in national and foreign policy agendas, but rather weakly in the Arctic strategies. People who live in the Arctic regions have substantially lower levels of disposable income on average and are at higher poverty risk especially compared with the capital regions of the same countries. Tertiary education attainment data demonstrates risk in human security for the male population. Crime statistics indicate higher risks of traffic offences in northern Finland and higher sexual offences risks in the northern Norway regions. The study identifies the risks and discusses disconnectedness between national human security agendas, SDGsand Arctic strategies. Human security lenses can be useful for identifying most imminent risks in human security and tailoring SDGs to the Arctic-specific context.

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