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Understanding cooperation in the Arctic : a neo-gramscian perspective Sharp, Gregory 2016

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UNDERSTANDING	COOPERATION	IN	THE	ARCTIC:	A	NEO-GRAMSCIAN	PERSPECTIVE	by			Gregory	Sharp			A	THESIS	SUBMITTED	IN	PARTIAL	FULFILLMENT	OF	THE	REQUIREMENTS	FOR	THE	DEGREE	OF		MASTER	OF	ARTS	in	THE	FACULTY	OF	GRADUATE	AND	POSTDOCTORAL	STUDIES	(Political	Science)		THE	UNIVERSITY	OF	BRITISH	COLUMBIA	(Vancouver)		September	2016		©	Gregory	Sharp,	2016	 ii Abstract	Reading	the	popular	media,	it	would	be	easy	to	think	that	the	Arctic	is	on	the	verge	of	conflict.	The	narrative	reflected	in	the	news	is	a	decidedly	conflictual	one	that	stands	at	odds	with	the	cooperation	that	has	come	to	characterise	the	region	over	the	last	two	decades	and	has	been	repeatedly	debunked	by	scholars.	Surprisingly,	this	cooperation	has	largely	continued	even	following	the	annexation	of	Crimea	and	the	imposition	of	sanctions.	This	raises	an	important	question:	why?	By	way	of	response,	and	in	an	effort	to	expand	the	discussion	on	the	Arctic	beyond	traditional	positivist	approaches,	neo-Gramscian	theory	is	employed	using	process	tracing.	By	drawing	on	a	diversity	of	examples	and	testing	them	against	concepts	drawn	from	the	literature,	support	is	found	for	the	neo-Gramscian	explanation:	that	cooperation	in	the	Arctic	is	the	by-product	of	a	neoliberal	hegemonic	bloc	pursuing	their	interests	in	the	region.																			 iii Preface		This	thesis	is	an	original,	unpublished,	independent	work	by	the	author,	Gregory	Sharp.																									 iv Table	of	Contents		Abstract	............................................................................................................................	ii	Preface	.............................................................................................................................	iii	Table	of	Contents	.............................................................................................................	iv	Acknowledgements	...........................................................................................................	v	Chapter	I:	Introduction	......................................................................................................	1	Chapter	II:	Conflict	or	Cooperation	in	the	Arctic?	...............................................................	2	Conflict…	...........................................................................................................................................	2	…or	cooperation?	..............................................................................................................................	2	Competing	theoretical	perspectives	.................................................................................................	4	Chapter	III:	Theoretical	Framework	...................................................................................	7	Understanding	hegemony	................................................................................................................	7	The	era	of	disciplinary	neo-liberalism	...............................................................................................	8	Counter	hegemonic	forces	and	trasformismo	..................................................................................	9	Words	of	caution	............................................................................................................................	10	Chapter	IV:	Methodology	................................................................................................	11	Process	tracing	................................................................................................................................	11	Assumptions	....................................................................................................................................	12	Chapter	V:	Testing	the	Neo-Gramscian	Approach	............................................................	13	The	spread	of	market	civilisation	....................................................................................................	13	Development	strategies	across	the	Arctic	..................................................................................	13	The	Arctic	Economic	Council	.......................................................................................................	18	Arctic	Council	Working	Groups	...................................................................................................	20	New	Constitutionalism	....................................................................................................................	21	The	Arctic	Economic	Council	.......................................................................................................	21	The	Arctic	Five	.............................................................................................................................	22	Alice	Rogoff,	the	Alaska	Dispatch,	and	the	Arctic	Circle	.............................................................	23	Increasing	inequality	.......................................................................................................................	25	Dismantling	of	welfare	systems	..................................................................................................	25	Women	in	the	Arctic	...................................................................................................................	26	Counter-hegemonic	forces	and	trasformismo	................................................................................	28	The	Arctic	Council	.......................................................................................................................	29	Royal	Dutch	Shell	in	the	Arctic	....................................................................................................	31	Clash	of	globalizations:	Russia	and	sanctions	.............................................................................	32	Chapter	VI:	Conclusion	....................................................................................................	36	Bibliography	....................................................................................................................	38	  v Acknowledgements	I	 would	 like	 to	 thank	my	 supervisor,	 Dr.	Michael	 Byers,	 for	 his	 guidance	 throughout	 this	process.	His	comments	were	immensely	useful	in	shaping	this	paper	and	keeping	it	on	track.	I	 also	 wish	 to	 thank	 my	 examiner,	 Dr.	 Mark	 Warren,	 for	 his	 engaged	 and	 productive	commentary	on	the	finished	draft.		I	would	also	like	to	thank	wine	for	getting	me	through	the	darkest	of	times,	my	local	coffee	shop	for	fueling	my	now	crippling	addiction	to	caffeine,	and	the	family	and	friends	who	were	polite	enough	to	feign	interest	in	my	project.										 1 	Chapter	I:	Introduction	 Reading	the	popular	media,	it	would	be	easy	to	think	that	the	Arctic	is	on	the	verge	of	conflict.	The	narrative	reflected	in	the	news	is	a	decidedly	conflictual	one	that	stands	at	odds	with	the	cooperation	that	has	come	to	characterise	the	region	over	the	last	two	decades	and	has	been	repeatedly	debunked	by	scholars	(see	Byers	2013,	2016;	Exner-Pirot	2015;	Baev	and	Boersma	2016).	Surprisingly,	this	cooperation	has	largely	continued	even	following	the	annexation	of	Crimea	 and	 the	 imposition	 of	 sanctions.	 This	 raises	 an	 important	 question:	 why	 is	 there	cooperation	in	the	Arctic?			By	way	of	response,	and	in	an	effort	to	expand	the	discussion	on	the	Arctic	beyond	traditional	positivist	approaches,	neo-Gramscian	 theory	 is	employed	using	a	process	 tracing	method.	Four	major	concepts	are	identified	in	the	literature:	the	spread	of	market	civilisation,	in	this	case	 through	neoliberal	 policies;	 new	 constitutionalism,	 or	 the	 shielding	 of	 elite	 interests	from	 popular	 scrutiny;	 the	 rise	 of	 inequality	 that	 accompanies	 neoliberalism;	 and	 the	emergence	 of	 counter-hegemonic	 forces	 in	 opposition	 to	 the	 dominant	 historic	 bloc.	 By	examining	 these	 concepts	 against	 a	 diversity	 of	 examples	 drawn	 from	 across	 the	 Arctic	support	is	found	for	the	neo-	Gramscian	explanation:	that	cooperation	in	the	Arctic	is	the	by-product	of	a	neoliberal	hegemonic	bloc	pursuing	their	interests	in	the	region.			To	elaborate	on	this	explanation,	and	the	evidence	supporting	it,	this	dissertation	begins	with	a	 brief	 summary	 of	 the	 state	 of	 Arctic	 affairs.	 This	 is	 followed	 by	 an	 explanation	 of	 neo-Gramscian	theory,	and	the	methodology	used,	which	 lays	 the	 foundation	 for	 the	analysis.	Divided	into	four	sections,	each	corresponding	to	a	particular	concept,	the	analysis	examines	whether	the	evidence	matches	the	observations	one	would	expect	based	on	neo-Gramscian	theory.	 Ultimately	 the	 findings,	 weaknesses,	 and	 potential	 areas	 of	 future	 research	 are	reviewed	in	the	conclusion.		 2 Chapter	II:	Conflict	or	Cooperation	in	the	Arctic?		Conflict…	In	2007	the	Russian	explorer	Artur	Chilingarov	planted	a	flag	on	the	seabed	at	the	North	Pole	and	unleashed	a	media	frenzy.	Pundits	and	politicians	alike	warned	of	a	coming	conflict	in	the	Arctic	reminiscent	of	the	19th	century	scramble	for	Africa.	A	2008	report	by	the	United	States	Geological	 Survey	 further	 upped	 the	 stakes	 when	 it	 predicted	 that	 the	 region	 held	approximately	22	percent	of	the	world’s	technically	recoverable	undiscovered	hydrocarbon	resources.	With	the	receding	sea	ice,	technological	advances,	and	the	then	high	price	of	oil,	the	promise	of	untold	Arctic	riches	beckoned.	Matters	were	further	complicated	when	it	was	revealed	that	Russia,	Denmark,	and	Canada	all	planned	on	submitting	overlapping	extended	continental	shelf	claims	to	the	United	Nations.			Then,	in	2014,	tension	peaked	when	Russia	annexed	Crimea.	Cooperation	with	NATO	broke	down,	sanctions	were	implemented,	and	both	sides	tested	the	other’s	airspace—including	in	the	Arctic.	The	picture	painted	by	the	media	was	a	grim	one:	It	was	only	a	matter	of	time	before	Russian	nuclear-powered	submarines	and	paratroopers	would	come	storming	across	the	North	Pole	 to	 invade,	 laying	 claim	 to	 the	 vast	 resource	potential	 of	 the	 region	 in	 the	process.	Headlines	warned	of	“Putin's	Arctic	invasion:	Russia	lays	claim	to	the	North	Pole	-	and	all	its	gas,	oil,	and	diamonds.”	The	stage	appeared	set	for	conflict	in	the	Arctic.		…or	cooperation?	Despite	 all	 these	 grandiose	 predictions,	 the	 Arctic	was	 not	 submerged	 in	 conflict.	 To	 the	contrary,	these	last	few	years	have	seen	impressive	levels	of	cooperation	between	the	Arctic	powers	 above	 and	 beyond	 the	 already	 substantial	 regional	 cooperation	 that	 has	characterised	 the	 last	 two	decades.	 Since	 the	Arctic	 is	 centred	on	an	ocean,	 it	 is	perhaps	unsurprising	that	this	cooperation	began	with	maritime	management.	Early	examples	include	the	 1994	 agreement	 between	 the	 US,	 Russia,	 China,	 Japan,	 South	 Korea,	 and	 Poland	 on	 3 straddling	stocks	in	the	Bering	Sea;	the	1999	agreement	between	Russia,	Norway,	and	Iceland	on	managing	fishery	stocks	in	the	Barents	Sea;	and	the	2002	Guidelines	for	Ships	Operating	in	Polar	Waters	at	the	International	Maritime	Organisation	(IMO)	(Byers	2016).	More	recently	in	 2015,	 the	 five	 Arctic	 coastal	 states—Canada,	 Denmark,	 Russia,	 the	 US,	 and	 Norway—signed	a	declaration	in	which	they	agreed	to	abstain	from	commercial	fishing	in	the	high	seas	area	in	the	middle	of	the	Arctic	Ocean	until	a	regulatory	framework	is	developed,	and	the	IMO	brought	into	place	the	mandatory	Polar	Code	for	ships	operating	in	the	polar	regions.			Beyond	 maritime	 questions,	 cooperation	 also	 exists	 on	 economic,	 political,	 and	 security	issues.	 The	 recently	 inaugurated	 headquarters	 of	 the	Arctic	 Economic	 Council	 in	 Tromsø,	Norway,	 is	 a	 physical	 testament	 to	 the	desire	 to	 foster	 cross	border	business-to-business	cooperation	in	the	region.	A	Canadian	initiative,	it	has	enjoyed	support	from	the	other	Arctic	countries	and	business	leaders	across	the	board.	Politically	speaking,	in	2010	one	of	the	few	remaining	maritime	border	disputes	in	the	Arctic	was	resolved	between	Norway	and	Russia	putting	an	end	 to	a	nearly	40-year	disagreement	 (Byers	2013).	More	generally,	 the	Arctic	Council	has	become	the	pre-eminent	intergovernmental	forum	in	the	region.	In	addition	to	the	multinational	working	groups	hosted	by	the	Council,	the	consensus	based	organisation	is	a	 platform	 through	 which	 several	 important	 agreements	 were	 negotiated.	 The	 recently	inaugurated	Arctic	Coast	Guard	Forum,	which	seeks	 to	 further	operationalise	cooperation	between	the	Arctic	countries	on	search	and	rescue,	is	the	outcome	of	a	Council	decision.			While	this	is	by	no	means	a	comprehensive	list	of	the	ways	in	which	cooperation	has	occurred	in	 the	 Arctic,	 it	 demonstrates	 that	 far	 from	 being	 on	 the	 verge	 of	 conflict,	 the	 Arctic	 is	characterised	 by	 cooperation.	 While	 the	 annexation	 of	 Crimea	 and	 the	 imposition	 of	sanctions	increased	tension	and	froze	some	initiatives	(in	particular	in	the	military	domain),	it	 is	notable	 that	cooperation	 in	 the	Arctic	has	continued.	The	Declaration	Concerning	 the	Prevention	of	Unregulated	High	Seas	Fishing	in	the	Central	Arctic	Ocean	is	a	good	example;	there	is	no	prospect	of	commercial	fisheries	appearing	in	the	short-	to	medium-term	so	its	negotiation	 was	 a	 proactive	 measure	 agreed	 upon	 by	 states	 that	 are	 at	 loggerheads	 4 elsewhere	in	the	world.	Even	Artur	Chilingarov,	the	man	at	the	heart	of	the	2007	controversy,	reiterated	at	the	2015	Arctic	Circle	conference	that	“there	were	no	problems	in	the	Arctic	that	could	not	be	solved	with	words”	(quoted	in	Exner-Pirot	2015).			Competing	theoretical	perspectives	This	highlights	an	important	question:	why	is	it	that	cooperation	in	the	Arctic	continues?	Most	popular	media	sources,	adopting	a	neorealist	point	of	view,	fail	 to	address	this	angle.	The	focus	in	most	articles,	reports,	and	sound	bites	is	inevitably	on	the	presence	of	resources	and	how	 this	will	 bring	about	 conflict	 as	 states	 seek	 to	maximize	power	 in	a	 zero	 sum	world.	Iterations	on	the	headline	“New	Cold	War’s	Arctic	Front,”	for	example,	are	now	so	plentiful	and	 overused	 that	 Heather	 Exner-Pirot	 is	 absolutely	 justified	 in	 calling	 for	 a	 ban	 on	 any	derivation	of	it	(2015).			When	you	begin	to	dig	into	the	theory	underpinning	this	approach,	it	becomes	clear	why	the	focus	 is	 on	 conflict:	 neorealism	 leaves	 little	 room	 for	 cooperation.	 States	 are	 power	maximizing	and	the	fear	of	relative	gains	serves	to	limit	cooperation.	Offensive	realists	note	that	the	likelihood	of	conflict	is	reduced	by	raising	the	costs	of	war	to	the	other	side.	It	could	be	argued	that	Russia,	by	investing	massively	in	their	military	infrastructure	in	the	Arctic,	has	raised	the	costs	of	war	so	high	for	other	states	in	the	region	that	it	has	induced	cooperation.	At	 odds	 with	 this	 narrative,	 the	 reality	 is	 that	 much	 of	 this	 trumpeted	 investment	 is	maintaining	antiquated	Soviet	era	infrastructure	or	has	yet	to	materialize	(Padrtova	2014).	Defensive	 realists,	on	 the	other	hand,	are	slightly	more	optimistic	about	 the	possibility	of	cooperation.	According	to	Robert	Jervis,	when	faced	with	a	security	dilemma	both	sides	can	work	together	provided	mutual	cooperation	is	much	more	beneficial	than	defection	(1999,	51-2).	If	faced	with	an	aggressor,	however,	cooperation	is	out	of	reach	(ibid.).	In	the	neorealist	depiction	of	the	Arctic,	Russia	is	portrayed	as	a	resurgent	power	intent	on	changing	the	status	quo—eliminating	the	possibility	of	cooperation	in	this	narrative.		Although	neoliberalism,	as	Robert	Keohane	and	Lisa	Martin	have	pointed	out,	is	the	“half- 5 sibling	of	neorealism,”	it	remains	more	positive	as	to	the	potential	for	cooperation	(1984:	3).	Generally	 speaking,	 neoliberals	 forward	 the	 view	 that	 cooperation	 can	 occur	 in	 anarchy	through	the	moderating	 influence	of	norms	and	 institutions.	Complex	 interdependence,	a	concept	within	neoliberalism	developed	by	Keohane	and	Joseph	Nye,	posits	that	the	declining	importance	 of	 military	 policy,	 coupled	 with	 increasing	 economic	 and	 other	 forms	 of	integration,	 should	 increase	 the	 probability	 of	 cooperation	 between	 states.	 Furthermore,	different	spheres	can	be	isolated	so	that	a	breakdown	in	cooperation	in	the	military	sphere,	for	example,	would	not	necessarily	affect	economic	cooperation	(Keohane	and	Nye	2012).	The	importance	of	cross-border	flows	of	capital,	technology,	and	trade	in	the	Arctic,	as	well	as	the	continued	cooperation	in	the	Arctic	despite	tension	elsewhere,	lend	credibility	to	this	approach.	It	is	further	reinforced	by	the	importance	of	intergovernmental	forums	such	as	the	Arctic	Council	in	facilitating	dialogue	and	shaping	norms	in	the	region.			Neo-Gramscianism,	a	critical	theory	derived	from	Marxist	thought,	is	based	on	a	rejection	of	the	above	positivist	approaches	and	is	built	upon	a	fundamentally	different	epistemology	and	ontology.	 Unlike	 the	 above	 positivist	 approaches,	 it	 does	 not	 take	 the	 structure	 of	 the	international	system	as	given	and	instead	seeks	to	analyse	how	a	particular	world	order	and	set	of	institutions,	norms,	and	practices	came	to	be	(Bieler	and	Morton	2003).	Despite	these	differences,	 a	 neo-Gramscian	 explanation	 for	 cooperation	 would	 be	 quite	 similar	 on	 the	surface	 to	 that	 proffered	by	 complex	 interdependence:	 cooperation	 is	 the	 result	 of	 close	economic	integration	and	the	ancillary	socio-political	ties.			Neo-Gramscianism	 differs	 from	 Keohane	 and	 Nye’s	 approach	 in	 that	 it	 comes	 to	 this	conclusion	by	interrogating	the	power	relations	behind	this	process;	essentially	that	this	is	the	 result	 of	 a	 dominant	 transnational	 class	 pursuing	 their	 interests.	 This	 project	 is	 the	construction	and	maintenance	of	hegemony—through	political,	economic,	and	 ideological	means—and	is	currently	embedded	within	the	logic	of	neoliberalism.	That	a	majority	of	Arctic	interests	form	part	of	this	same	class	allows	for	cooperation	to	continue	as	the	goal	is	the	same.	 Friction	 occurs	 where	 this	 transnational	 class	 encounters	 elites	 embedded	 in	 a	 6 different	system,	or	when	a	movement	challenges	the	authority	of	these	transnational	elites	from	below.			The	burgeoning	 interest	 in	 the	post-Cold	War	Arctic—running	 the	gamut	 from	 the	World	Economic	 Forum’s	 Arctic	 Investment	 Protocol	 to	 activists	 protesting	 offshore	 drilling	 in	Alaska—provides	a	fertile	ground	for	this	type	of	analysis.		                                   7 Chapter	III:	Theoretical	Framework		Before	being	imprisoned	in	1926	by	Mussolini's	fascist	government,	Antonio	Gramsci	was	the	head	 of	 the	 Italian	 Communist	 Party.	 While	 in	 prison,	 Gramsci	 wrote	 some	 3000	 pages	analyzing	Italian	history,	nationalism,	critical	theory	and	Marxism,	that	came	to	be	known	as	the	 Prison	 Notebooks.	 Considered	 one	 of	 the	 most	 prominent	 Marxist	 scholars	 of	 the	twentieth	 century,	 Gramsci's	work	 is	 important	 as	 it	 frees	Marxism	 from	more	 dogmatic	interpretations	of	Leninism	and	rejects	economism.	In	doing	so,	Gramsci	sought	to	address	some	 of	 the	 political	 lacunae	 of	 classical	 Marxism.	 Instead	 he	 argued	 that	 this	 was	 too	mechanically	deterministic—as	civil	society	(the	persuasive	element	of	the	state)	did	not	have	an	inherent	class	character—and	that	hegemony	was	instead	the	dominance	exercised	“by	persuading	the	subordinate	classes	to	accept	the	values	and	ideas	which	the	dominant	class	has	itself	adopted”	(Simon	2015,	13).	This,	in	turn,	paved	the	way	forward	for	Marxist	political	thought.		Understanding	hegemony	Gramsci's	musings	found	their	way	into	international	relations	in	the	1980s	through	the	work	of	Robert	Cox	and	his	rejection	of	realist	and	liberal	strains	of	thought.	Although	the	Italian	thinker's	work	centred	more	or	 less	exclusively	on	 the	 state,	Cox	 found	 that	many	of	 the	concepts	outlined	in	the	Prison	Notebooks	were	helpful	in	understanding	the	international	realm.	In	particular,	Cox	highlighted	the	importance	of	Gramsci’s	idea	of	hegemony	and	the	ways	in	which	it	diverged	from	mainstream	international	relations	theories.	This	conception	of	hegemony	is	now	central	to	the	neo-Gramscian	approach	and	has	been	expanded	on	by	scholars	such	as	Stephen	Gill	and	his	work	on	the	Trilateral	Commission	(1990,	1993),	William	Robinson's	study	on	the	emerging	transnational	capitalist	class	(2005)	and,	more	recently,	by	Adam	D.	Morton	who	has	historicized	Gramsci's	ideas	(2007).		Much	broader	 than	 realist	or	 liberal	definitions,	hegemony	 in	 the	neo-Gramscian	sense	 is	understood	as	“as	an	expression	of	broadly-based	consent,	manifested	in	the	acceptance	of	 8 ideas	and	supported	by	material	resources	and	institutions”	(Bieler	and	Morton	2003).	In	this	way	hegemony	 is	not	the	dominance	of	a	powerful	state,	but	 instead	the	dominance	of	a	consensual	 order	 that	 may	 or	 may	 not	 be	 underpinned	 by	 a	 powerful	 state.	 It	 is	 first	constructed	at	the	national	level	in	the	state-civil	society	complex,	understood	as	both	the	public	 and	 private	 spheres,	 by	 organic	 intellectuals	 who	 sustain	 the	 common	 ideas,	organisations,	and	identities	of	the	class	in	question	(Bieler	and	Morton	2003).			This	dominant	union	of	social	forces	is	what	Gramsci	terms	a	historic	bloc	and	is	projected	internationally	after	coming	to	power	at	the	national	level.	This	historic	bloc	is	more	than	just	a	Leninist	class	alliance,	 instead	it	 is	an	integration	of	varied	class	interests	that	ultimately	reproduces	 its	 hegemony	 through	 a	 network	 of	 institutions,	 norms,	 and	 ideas—again,	sustained	by	organic	 intellectuals.	 In	this	way	the	subordinate	classes	are	made	to	believe	that	the	interests	of	the	dominant	class	are,	in	fact,	the	general	interest.		Elaborating	 on	 the	 construction	 of	 a	 hegemonic	 order,	 neo-Gramscian	 theory	 posits	 that	hegemony	in	any	given	historical	structure	is	constituted	of	three	mutually	reinforcing	pillars:	the	social	relations	of	production,	forms	of	state,	and	world	order.	Each	of	these	pillars	is,	in	turn,	 composed	 of	 ideas,	 material	 capabilities,	 and	 institutions	 (for	 a	 more	 in-depth	explanation	see	Morton	2015,	114-16).	Immediately	following	WWII,	the	social	relations	of	production	were	characterized	by	a	Fordist	regime	of	mass	production	and	consumption	(Cox	1987),	the	form	of	state	was	a	Keynesian	welfare	system	espousing	interventionism	(Gill	and	Law	 1988),	 and	 the	 world	 order	 was	 that	 of	 US	 hegemony,	 labelled	 by	 Cox	 as	 the	 pax	Americana.			The	era	of	disciplinary	neo-liberalism	The	dominance	of	this	US-based	hegemonic	order	began	to	ebb	 in	the	wake	of	the	Nixon	Shock	 in	 1971,	 the	 collapse	 of	 the	 Bretton	Woods	 institutions,	 and	 the	 social	 crises	 they	provoked.	 Since	 then,	 it	 is	 argued	 that	 a	 new	 transnational	 historic	 bloc	 has	 emerged.	Fundamentally	different	from	the	pax	Americana,	this	era	of	globalization	is	characterized	by	 9 the	rise	of	transnational	production	and	finance	driven	by	large	multinational	corporations,	international	organisations,	and	Western	governments.	This	was	accompanied	by	the	rise	of	a	transnational	capital	class	centred	in	the	US,	but	also	encompassing	parts	of	Europe	and	Japan	(see	Gill	1990;	Carroll	and	Carson	2003;	Robinson	2005);	the	erosion	of	democracy	in	favour	of	 “oligopolistic	neoliberalism”	 (Gill	 1995,	405);	 and	 the	 fractionalisation	of	 labour	nationally	 and	 transnationally	 (see	 Bieler	 2006,	 32-4).	 While	 this	 manifested	 differently	depending	on	the	state	in	question,	in	each	case	it	resulted	in	a	neoliberal	shift	(Murphy	1998).			This	 new	 era,	 disciplinary	 neoliberalism,	 is	 based	 on	 two	 key	 processes.	 The	 first	 is	 the	production	and	propagation	of	what	Gill	terms	market	civilisation	(1995).	This	extension	of	the	market	encourages	self-actualisation	through	consumption,	prioritizes	the	privatisation	of	 public	 goods,	 and	 ensures	 the	 freedom	 of	 the	 market	 through	 deregulation	 and	 by	removing	trade	barriers—all	of	which	fuel	 inequality	and	its	pernicious	consequences.	The	second,	new	constitutionalism,	is	the	narrowing	of	the	base	of	participation	in	the	neoliberal	world	order	in	order	to	“remove	or	insulate	substantially	the	new	economic	institutions	from	popular	scrutiny	or	democratic	accountability”	(Gill	1992:	165).		Counter	hegemonic	forces	and	trasformismo	The	inequality	and	democratic	deficits	generated	by	the	rise	of	disciplinary	neoliberalism	has;	unsurprisingly,	given	rise	to	diverse	resistance—counter	hegemonic	forces—ranging	from	the	global	 justice	 movement	 to	 environmental	 activism.	 Neo-Gramscian	 theory,	 with	 a	 large	intellectual	debt	to	Gramsci,	offers	two	key	concepts	for	understanding	this	resistance:	a	war	of	 movement	 and	 a	 war	 of	 position.	 A	war	 of	 movement	 involves	 using	 strong	 coercive	elements	to	install	a	new	state	apparatus	while	building	consensus	among	other	subaltern	classes.	This	 is	effective	when	civil	society	 is	 in	 it	 its	primordial	stages,	for	example	Tsarist	Russia.	A	war	of	position;	on	the	other	hand,	is	more	suited	to	slowly	building	resistance	in	states	 with	 strong	 civil	 societies.	 In	 this	 case,	 organic	 intellectuals	 cultivate	 the	 social	foundations	for	the	emergence	of	a	new	historic	bloc	within	civil	society	in	attempt	to	erode	the	ground	out	from	underneath	the	current	hegemonic	class	(Cox	1983:	164-65).			 10 	Beyond	 resorting	 to	 coercive	 force,	 the	 dominant	 historic	 bloc	 would	 respond	 to	 these	threats	 through	 a	 process	 known	 as	 trasformismo.	 In	 Gramsci’s	 writing,	 he	 refers	 to	trasformismo	 as	 the	 creation	 of	 a	 centrist	 coalition	 that	 cast	 about	 to	 cover	 the	 widest	possible	span	of	interests	while	marginalising	both	the	extreme	left	and	right	of	the	political	spectrum.	Cox	later	elaborated	on	this	definition,	saying	that	trasformismo	worked	to	co-opt	leaders	of	potential	subaltern	social	groups	and	that	it	served	“as	a	strategy	of	assimilating	and	 domesticating	 potentially	 dangerous	 ideas	 by	 adjusting	 them	 to	 the	 policies	 of	 the	dominant	 coalition”	 (1983:	 166-7).	 In	 this	 way	 the	 dominant	 coalition	 could	 disrupt	 the	formation	of	organised	opposition.				Words	of	caution	Before	launching	into	a	discussion	of	methodology,	a	few	words	are	merited	explaining	how	neo-Gramscian	 theory	 is	 deployed	 in	 this	 analysis.	 Firstly,	 this	 is	 not	 a	 philological	 or	exegetical	 reading	 of	 Gramsci’s	 ideas.	 This	 leaves	 this	 analysis	 open	 to	 the	 critique	 that	Gramsci’s	 ideas	are	being	taken	out	of	context.	Alastair	Davidson,	for	example,	notes	that	“Gramsci's	own	views	about	international	relations	in	his	time	and	space	cannot	be	applied	holus	bolus	to	a	reality	that	he	did	not	even	envisage”	(2008:	89).	Instead	of	remaining	stuck	within	a	strict	interpretation	of	Gramsci’s	thoughts,	however,	the	goal	is,	similar	to	how	Cox	originally	 explained	 his	 approach,	 to	maximise	 the	 descriptive	 potential	 of	 the	 theory.	 A	second	fault	that	could	be	found	with	this	application	of	neo-Gramscian	thought	is	that,	in	a	departure	from	Marxist	theory,	the	objective	here	is	purely	descriptive:	no	attempt	is	made	to	trace	the	steps	required	for	an	emancipatory	project.	These	limitations	are	due	in	large	part	to	the	length	requirements	of	an	MA	thesis.	I	hope	to	redress	them	later,	perhaps	in	my	PhD	thesis.				 11 Chapter	IV:	Methodology		Applying	a	strict	methodological	approach	to	neo-Gramscian	theory	 is	a	 lot	 like	building	a	bridge	into	no-man’s-land	with	only	a	vague	idea	of	what	a	bridge	actually	is:	you	have	no	idea	where	you	will	end	up	and	barely	any	direction	to	get	there.	Despite	the	article	by	Cox	that	 initiated	this	whole	 field	of	neo-Gramscian	study	being	entitled	“Gramsci,	Hegemony	and	International	Relations:	An	Essay	in	Method,”	no	explicit	method	is	elaborated	beyond	suggesting	ways	in	which	the	concepts	laid	out	are	connected.	This	is	equally	true	of	other	prominent	 neo-Gramscian	 scholars.	 Moreover,	 most	 studies	 that	 have	 applied	 neo-Gramscian	principles	to	a	specific	case	have	failed	to	explicitly	state	how	they	are	using	these	principles.	 One	 important	 exception	 is	 the	 very	 short	 publication	 by	 Bieler	 and	Morton,	entitled	 “Theoretical	 and	 Methodological	 Challenges	 of	 neo-Gramscian	 Perspectives	 in	International	Political	 Economy,”	 in	which	 they	briefly	 explore	questions	 that	 could	guide	neo-Gramscian	research	but	fall	short	of	explicitly	outlining	a	method.			Process	tracing	Given	this	lack	of	a	clear	method	provided	by	the	theory,	this	analysis	will	employ	process	tracing	in	order	to	test	the	validity	of	the	claims	made	by	neo-Gramscian	theory	in	explaining	cooperation	 in	 the	 Arctic.	 Drawing	 on	 the	 concepts	 and	 principles	 described	 above,	 this	analysis	 sets	 out	 a	 series	 of	 observable	 implications.	 In	 doing	 so,	 it	 asks:	what	would	we	expect	to	observe,	or	not,	as	the	case	may	be,	if	there	was	a	disciplinary	neoliberal	historic	bloc	propagating	their	hegemonic	agenda	in	the	Arctic?	Various	causal	process	observations	will	then	be	presented	against	these	implications	to	evaluate	the	effectiveness	of	the	neo-Gramscian	approach.	These	examples	were	selected	following	the	suggestions	of	Macartan	Humphreys	and	Alan	Jacobs	to	focus	on	the	probative	value	of	a	case,	or	how	much	can	be	learnt	from	it	(2015).			 12 Assumptions	There	 are	 several	 assumptions	 that	 undergird	 this	 analysis.	 First	 and	 foremost	 is	 the	assumption	that	there	is	a	transnational	historic	bloc	based	on	the	ideologies	of	disciplinary	neoliberalism	in	existence,	and	that	they	are	in	a	position	of	either	hegemony	or	supremacy	(near	hegemony).	This	assumption	is	a	core	tenant	of	current	neo-Gramscian	scholarship	and	at	the	heart	of	the	explanation	proffered	by	the	theory	as	to	why	there	would	be	cooperation	in	the	Arctic—without	it	there	would	be	no	reason	to	conduct	this	analysis.	To	reiterate	what	was	said	above,	the	goal	of	this	study	is	not	to	test	the	validity	of	this	theory	universally,	but	instead	to	see	whether	or	not	it	is	applicable	in	the	Arctic.			The	 second	major	 assumption,	 also	 drawn	 from	 recent	 scholarship,	 is	 what	 a	 neoliberal	agenda	would	 look	 like,	 i.e.	what	would	 neoliberal	 policies	 look	 like.	 In	 this	 case,	 as	was	touched	upon	above	 in	the	discussion	on	Gill’s	concept	of	market	civilisation,	a	neoliberal	agenda	 is	 defined	 generally	 as	 the	 extension	 of	 the	 market.	 Broken	 down	 further,	 this	includes	self-actualisation	through	consumption,	the	privatisation	of	public	goods,	lobbying	for	deregulation,	the	removal	of	trade	barriers,	the	quantification	of	natural	resources,	the	commodification	of	culture,	and	a	focus	on	profits	at	the	expense	of	other	interests	inter	alia.													 13 Chapter	V:	Testing	the	Neo-Gramscian	Approach		In	 order	 to	 determine	 whether	 or	 not	 neo-Gramscian	 theory	 provides	 a	 convincing	explanation	 for	 the	 cooperation	 witnessed	 in	 the	 Arctic,	 the	 evidence	 available	 will	 be	contrasted	against	expected	observations.	Several	concepts	taken	from	the	literature—the	spread	of	market	civilisation,	new	constitutionalism,	inequality	and	labour	fractionalisation,	trasformismo,	and	the	existence	of	counter-hegemonic	forces—are	treated	as	the	observable	implications	of	 the	 theory.	 Specific	 examples	are	 then	used	 to	determine	whether	or	not	there	is	evidence	to	support	the	existence	of	a	disciplinary	neoliberal	historic	bloc	in	the	Arctic	as	claimed	by	neo-Gramscian	theory.			The	spread	of	market	civilisation	The	first	expected	observation	is	the	spread	of	market	civilisation	which,	in	the	case	of	the	current	historic	bloc,	would	be	the	promulgation	of	the	neoliberal	agenda.	It	is	expected	that	this	would	be	visible	both	at	 the	national	and	regional	 levels.	Moreover,	while	 this	would	serve	 the	 interests	 of	 the	 current	 historic	 bloc,	 this	 process	 would	 be	 presented	 as	 the	common	good.	One	way	this	agenda	could	be	presented	is	through	institutions	for,	although	institutions	cannot	be	conflated	with	hegemony,	they	are	an	expression	of	it—that	is	to	say	that	 they	 tend	 to	 reflect	 and	 stabilize	 prevailing	 power	 relations	 (Cox	 1983:	 136).	 Other	possible	 examples	 include	 government	 policies,	 conferences,	 or	 corporate	 strategies	 that	emphasize	a	neoliberal	approach.	Given	that	this	process	is	a	required	component	of	the	neo-Gramscian	approach,	and	there	is	a	high	likelihood	of	being	able	to	witness	clues	to	this	effect,	if	it	were	not	present	it	would	be	a	strong	blow	against	this	explanation.		Development	strategies	across	the	Arctic	In	July	of	2009,	the	Minister	of	Indian	Affairs	and	Northern	Development	released	a	report	entitled	Canada’s	Northern	 Strategy:	Our	North,	Our	 Future.	 The	 report	outlines	 four	 key	pillars	at	 the	heart	of	 this	 strategy:	Arctic	 sovereignty,	 social	and	economic	development,	 14 environmental	 protection,	 and	 devolving	 northern	 governance.	 The	 recommendations	contained	 within	 the	 report	 suggest	 investing	 in	 infrastructure	 as	 a	 platform	 for	 future	development;	developing	expertise	across	a	series	of	areas	identified	as	critical	to	the	region,	such	 as	 better	 geological	 mapping	 (important	 for	 extractive	 industries);	 and	 the	establishment	 of	 tripartite	 private-public-partnerships	 between	 the	 various	 levels	 of	government,	industry,	and	Indigenous	development	corporations.		Echoing	these	priorities,	a	new	development	agency	was	announced	in	2009	by	then	Prime	Minister	 Stephen	 Harper	 to	 help	 operationalise	 these	 goals.	 The	 aptly	 named	 Northern	Economic	Development	Agency	 (CanNor)	 released	Building	a	Strong	North	Together,	 their	strategic	framework	for	2013-2018.	It	explains	that	that	this	framework	is	designed	“so	that	Northerners	and	all	Canadians	can	benefit	from	the	unprecedented	economic	opportunities	that	are	unfolding	in	Canada’s	three	northern	territories”	(2).	Alongside	quotes	from	industry	leaders	thanking	the	agency	for	its	support,	this	report	outlines	how	CanNor	will	overcome	the	 challenges	 facing	 resource	 development	 in	 the	 Northern	 Territories	 by	 developing	 a	skilled	workforce,	enabling	infrastructure,	and	community	capacity	(12).		In	 both	 documents	 there	 is	 a	 clear	 political	 will	 to	 help	 facilitate	 corporate	 interests	 in	Canada’s	 North.	 Despite	 mentioning	 other	 priorities	 such	 as	 environmental	 stewardship,	community	 engagement,	 and	 cultural	 preservation,	 the	 focus	 is	 overwhelmingly	 on	 the	extractive	potential	of	the	North	measured	in	terms	of	knock-on	benefits	for	other	industries,	jobs	created,	and	royalties	generated.	As	Heather	Nicol	succinctly	lays	out,	“it	is	clear	that	the	development	model	 that	 informs	CanNor	 is	 inherently	 neoliberal,	 relying	 upon	 a	 suite	 of	private	and	public	partnerships,	strategic	investment,	niche	education	and	'project'-oriented	development”	(2015;	see	also	Everett	and	Nicol	2014).			Furthermore,	by	framing	the	dialogue	as	one	based	around	the	immense	resource	potential	of	 the	 North	 and	 the	 shipping	 required	 to	 develop	 it,	 Canada’s	 approach	 to	 northern	development	excludes	models	 that	do	not	 conform	 to	 these	neoliberal	 ideals.	 Traditional	 15 forms	of	Indigenous	subsistence	hunting;	for	example,	are	not	prioritised	as	they	do	not	fit	neatly	into	the	market	economy.	In	her	doctoral	dissertation	on	the	subject,	Elizabeth	Russel	explains	how	Canada’s	Northern	Strategy	has	marginalised	Inuit	communities,	explaining	that	“Inuit	 perspectives	 on	 value,	 expertise,	 and	 freedom	 and/or	 choice	 are	 not	 a	 part	 of	 a	neoliberal	political	rationale	in	Canada’s	Northern	Strategy”	(2015:	71).	This,	in	turn,	leads	to	a	 dismissal	 of	 Indigenous	 forms	 of	 knowledge	 and	 understanding,	 instead	 only	 allowing	Indigenous	participation	in	the	development	of	their	own	communities	if	they	are	willing	to	engage	on	the	terms	provided	by	neoliberal	rationale	(ibid.).			Some	hoped	 that	 the	 election	of	 a	 new	 Liberal	 government	 in	 late	 2015	would	 initiate	 a	change	in	policy.	Despite	criticizing	Harper’s	Arctic	approach	as	“big	sled,	no	dogs,”	little	has	emerged	 from	 Trudeau	 as	 to	 which	 direction	 his	 Arctic	 policy	 will	 take	 (quoted	 in	Higginbotham	2016).	Thus	far,	what	little	has	been	released	seems	to	indicate	more	of	the	same	in	the	future.	For	example,	the	Liberals	have	announced	the	expansion	of	the	Nutrition	North	Program,	a	controversial	market	driven	food	subsidy	program	brought	 into	place	 in	2012	by	the	former	Conservative	government	that	has	been	widely	accused	of	subsidizing	retailers	and	not	consumers,	despite	several	attempts	at	reform	(Zeiniker	2016;	Rennie	2014).	The	only	other	major	funding	announcements,	$133	million	slated	for	improving	surveillance	capabilities,	was	framed	by	the	commercial	benefits	it	would	bring.	The	coordinating	agency,	Defence	 Research	 and	 Development	 Canada,	 sent	 a	 note	 to	 industry	 highlighting	 the	increased	commercial	opportunities	provided	by	climate	change	(Pugliese	2016).	Significantly,	since	his	election,	Trudeau	has	yet	to	visit	the	Arctic.			Just	across	the	the	141st	meridian	west	in	Alaska,	the	National	Strategy	for	the	Arctic	Region	released	by	the	White	House	in	2013	outlines	similar	goals.	Built	on	three	pillars—advancing	American	 security	 interests,	 promoting	 responsible	 stewardship,	 and	 strengthening	international	 cooperation—the	 report	 seeks	 “to	 position	 the	 United	 States	 to	 respond	effectively	 to	 challenges	 and	 emerging	 opportunities	 arising	 from	 significant	 increases	 in	Arctic	 activity	 due	 to	 the	 diminishment	 of	 sea	 ice	 and	 the	 emergence	 of	 a	 new	 Arctic	 16 environment”	(2013:	2).	The	report	is	built	on	the	fundamental	assumption	that	commercial	activity	in	the	Arctic	will	increase	and	frames	its	recommendations	as	positioning	the	US	to	best	capitalise	on	these	emerging	opportunities.		Of	note,	engagement	with	the	Indigenous	peoples	of	Alaska	is	highlighted	in	both	the	national	strategy	and	the	policy	priorities	released	to	coincide	with	the	United	States’	Chairmanship	of	the	Arctic	Council.	Part	of	the	development	strategy	is	to	include	the	Alaska	Native	local	and	regional	corporations,	the	result	of	the	Alaska	Native	Claims	Settlement	Act	(ANCSA),	in	developing	the	state’s	economic	potential.	As	with	the	Canadian	example,	however,	this	is	predicated	 on	 neoliberal	 ideals	 that	marginalise	 traditional	 knowledge	 and	 lifestyles.	 Eve	Tuck,	an	Indigenous	scholar	from	Alaska,	has	noted	how	ANSCA	reframed	tribal	members	as	shareholders	and	traditional	land	as	subsurface	land	claims.	She	argues	that	ANSCA	has	been	a	 “settler	 reconceptualization,	 one	 that	 displaces	 and	 re-stories	 land	 as	 capital	 and	Indigeneity	as	a	capitalist	endeavor.	It	makes	us	all	Alaska	Native	capitalists”	(Tuck	2014:	258).	This	process	is	enabled	by	state	level	policies	that	promote	neoliberal	development	schemes	aimed	at	helping	 Indigenous	 communities	and	economies	but	 that	often	 instead	come	at	their	expense	(Ganapathy	2011:	123).			At	the	state	 level,	Alaska	has	always	been	heavily	reliant	on	hydrocarbon	extraction	as	an	economic	generator	and	to	fund	approximately	85	percent	of	the	state	budget.	Output	from	Alaska’s	North	Slope	peaked	in	1989	at	2	million	barrels	per	day,	but	has	since	declined	to	less	than	300,000	barrels	per	day.	In	an	effort	to	entice	more	producers	back	to	Alaska,	the	Republican	majority	 in	both	state	houses	passed	 the	More	Alaska	Production	Act	 in	2013	which	cut	taxes	on	oil	revenue	despite	intense	scepticism	regarding	the	effectiveness	of	this	approach	(Thomas	et	al.	20??:	596).	This	followed	intense	lobbying	in	favour	of	the	bill	by	Governor	Parnell	and	the	powerful	Alaska	Oil	and	Gas	Association,	 the	 latter	which	spent	over	$1	million	on	lobbying	state	legislators	the	year	before	the	tax	cut	was	introduced.			Indicative	of	the	close	ties	between	the	political	elite	in	Alaska	and	the	oil	industry,	the	Alaska	 17 legislature	 de	 facto	 shuts	 down	 the	 March	 of	 almost	 every	 year	 as	 a	 vast	 majority	 are	attending	the	Energy	Council	Conference—now	known	as	“Energy	Break”	(McClatchy	2012).	When	 the	 price	 of	 oil	 plummeted	 in	 2013	 and	 the	 state’s	 budget	 deficit	 ballooned,	 the	legislature	 cut	 funding	 to	education,	 the	marine	 ferry	 service,	 and	 the	budget	 for	 Juneau	instead	of	raising	taxes	on	oil	revenues	(Semuels	2015).	This	has	led	to	concerns	that	the	state	is	providing	the	oil	industry	with	$135	million	more	in	credits	than	it	will	receive	in	royalties	and	production	tax	for	the	unrestricted	general	fund,	and	that	the	tax	regime	is	likely	to	allow	companies	to	carry	over	their	credits	into	future	years	(Herz	2016).			Despite	Alaska’s	 intimate	relationship	with	the	oil	 industry,	the	White	House’s	position	on	the	Arctic	took	an	apparent	turn	beginning	in	2015	and	began	to	focus	on	climate	change.	In	that	same	year,	Obama	became	the	first	sitting	president	to	visit	Alaska	on	a	trip	designed	to	showcase	 the	 effects	 of	 climate	 change	 and	 build	 support	 for	 his	 environmental	 agenda.	Following	 on	 the	 heels	 of	 this	 announcement,	 in	 early	 2016	 President	Obama	 and	 Prime	Minister	Trudeau	held	a	joint	press	conference	in	Washington,	D.C.,	in	which	they	agreed	to	implement	the	recently	negotiated	Paris	Agreement,	cooperate	on	promoting	clean	energy,	and	 set	 aside	 17	 percent	 of	 land	 areas	 and	 10	 percent	 of	marine	 areas	 in	 the	 Arctic	 for	protection	by	2020	(Office	of	the	Prime	Minister	of	Canada	2016).				Critics	were	quick	to	point	out	 inconsistencies,	however.	 In	 the	case	of	 the	trip	 to	Alaska,	many	 argued	 that	 Obama’s	 environmental	 agenda	was	 undermined	 by	 the	 fact	 that	 the	White	House	gave	Shell	the	green	light	to	go	ahead	with	a	controversial	drilling	project	in	the	Chukchi	Sea	around	the	same	time	(Milman	2015).	Of	note,	the	permitting	process	for	the	Shell	project	began	prior	to	Obama’s	time	in	office	yet	remained	unchanged.	Investigative	journalist	Steve	Horn	(2015)	suggests	that	pro-business	policies	have	been	institutionalised,	regardless	of	what	party	is	in	power,	through	the	close	ties	between	the	White	House	and	industry	lobbyists.	In	the	case	of	economic	development	in	the	US	Arctic,	Energy	Secretary	Ernest	 Moniz	 commissioned	 a	 report	 from	 the	 National	 Petroleum	 Council—an	 advisory	committee	 within	 the	 US	 government	 that	 has	 representatives	 from	 all	 major	 energy	 18 companies—on	 the	 viability	 of	 developing	 Arctic	 energy.	 The	 report,	 Arctic	 Potential:	Realizing	 the	 Promise	 of	 U.S.	 Arctic	 Oil	 and	 Gas	 Resources,	 argues	 heavily	 in	 favour	 of	developing	these	reserves	as	a	successor	to	waning	shale	energy.			With	regard	to	the	outcomes	of	the	joint	press	conference	with	Trudeau,	there	appears	to	be	inherent	contradictions	within	their	promises.	They	agree	to	fully	implement	the	provisions	of	the	Paris	Agreement	which	include	a	goal	to	limit	global	temperature	increases	to	below	2°C	 above	 pre-industrial	 levels.	 They	 also	 agreed	 to	 develop	 low-impact	 shipping	 routes,	promote	sustainable	development,	and	adopt	a	"science-based"	approached	to	oil	and	gas	development	in	the	Arctic.	A	report	released	in	Nature	has	noted	that,	in	order	to	meet	the	goals	of	the	Paris	Agreement,	there	can	be	no	further	development	of	energy	resources	in	the	Arctic	as	well	as	other	high-emission	sources	such	as	the	(near	Arctic)	Alberta	oil	sands	(McGlade	and	Ekins	2015,	187).	It	would	seem	that	a	science-based	approach	would	involve	freezing	further	exploration;	instead	the	U.S.	Bureau	of	Ocean	Energy	Management	opened	new	leases	in	the	Beaufort	and	Chukchi	Seas	early	this	year	(Windeyer	2016)	and	Trudeau	is	supportive	of	building	a	new	pipeline	to	take	bitumen	from	the	oil	sands	to	an	ocean	port.	Critics	have	since	accused	President	Obama	of	“green	washing”	Arctic	development	to	make	it	more	palatable.	In	response,	the	President	defended	his	position	by	arguing	in	favour	of	domestic	production;	an	unnamed	senior	White	House	official,	on	the	other	hand,	conceded	that	there	was	“obvious	tension”	between	the	two	positions	(Milman	2015).	 		The	Arctic	Economic	Council	At	the	international	level,	the	Arctic	Economic	Council	(AEC)	is	the	newly	minted	economic	forum.	Founded	by	a	decision	of	the	Arctic	Council	in	2014,	the	AEC	officially	opened	their	doors	in	Tromsø,	Norway,	in	2015.	The	marquee	accomplishment	of	the	2013-15	Canadian	Chairmanship	of	the	Arctic	Council,	the	AEC	strives	to	facilitate	business-to-business	activities	and	responsible	economic	development	in	the	Arctic.	It	defines	its	goals	as	establishing	strong	market	 connections	 between	 states,	 encouraging	 P3s	 for	 infrastructure	 development,	creating	 stable	 regulatory	 frameworks,	 facilitating	 data	 exchange,	 and	 engaging	 with	 19 traditional	Indigenous	knowledge	(AEC	2014:	2).	Interestingly,	the	AEC	was	designed	by	the	same	people	within	the	Canadian	Chairmanship—Leona	Aglukkaq,	the	then	Minister	for	the	Arctic	Council—who	set	the	agenda	for	CanNor,	the	abovementioned	Canadian	development	agency	(whereas	previously	the	mandate	for	all	Arctic	diplomacy	was	handled	by	the	ministry	of	foreign	affairs).		Promoted	 as	 a	 means	 of	 generating	 economic	 growth	 in	 the	 North	 through	 small-	 and	medium-sized	businesses,	the	AEC	has	set	itself	the	goal	of	being	the	primary	intermediary	between	business	in	the	region	and	the	Arctic	Council.	Of	the	35	members	currently	sitting	in	the	AEC,	only	3	appear	to	be	from	small-	to	medium-sized	businesses	whereas	a	substantial	number	appear	to	either	lobby	on	behalf	of	extractive	industries	or	are	themselves	a	mining	or	oil	and	gas	company.	To	list	but	a	couple,	members	include	Rosneft,	Russia's	 largest	oil	company,	and	Baffinland	 Iron	Mines,	a	Canadian	company	with	one	of	 the	 largest	mining	projects	in	the	Arctic.			This	initiative	has	also	received	support	from	elites	across	the	Arctic	Council	countries.	In	the	words	of	the	Norwegian	Foreign	Minister,	Børge	Brende,	the	AEC	“will	be	an	indispensable	partner	for	the	Arctic	Council	in	the	work	of	facilitating	business	activity	in	the	North”	(quoted	in	McGwin	2015).	Erling	Kvadsheim,	Director	of	the	Norwegian	Oil	and	Gas	Association,	was	involved	in	organizing	the	AEC	and,	at	the	behest	of	the	Norwegian	Foreign	Ministry,	has	been	leading	Norway's	engagement.	A	presentation	he	gave	at	the	High	North	Dialogue	conference	in	Norway	maintained	that	the	“AEC	will	be	uniquely	positioned	to	influence	the	policies	in	the	High	North	and	the	regulatory	framework	for	business	development”	(Kvadsheim	2015:	3).	Elsewhere	Finnish	businesses	have	been	extremely	supportive	of	 the	 initiative	and	the	Finnish	government	has	promised	to	take	up	the	initiative	in	their	2017	chairmanship.			Furthermore,	 the	work	 of	 the	AEC	 is	 continuing	under	 the	US	 chairmanship	 (2015-2017).	Despite	being	initially	reluctant,	the	US	has	since	vowed	to	continue	the	work	of	the	regional	business	forum.	Secretary	of	State	Kerry	endorsed	Canada’s	efforts	at	a	Ministerial	meeting,	 20 saying	that	“the	United	States	very	much	supports	the	effort	led	by	Canada	to	stand	up	the	Arctic	Economic	Council	which	will	help	businesses	to	invest	and	help	Arctic	communities	to	prosper”	(quoted	in	Haines	2015).		At	the	Arctic	Frontiers	conference	in	Tromsø,	Norway,	earlier	this	year,	the	AEC	was	yet	again	endorsed	 by	 its	 elite	 participants.	 This	 included	 the	 Swedish	 Minister	 of	 Strategic	Development	 and	 Nordic	 Cooperation,	 Kristina	 Persson,	 who	 called	 it	 one	 of	 the	 key	achievements	of	the	Arctic	Council.	Halldór	Johansson,	the	executive	director	of	the	Arctic	Portal	 in	 Akureyri,	 Iceland,	 pointed	 out	 that	 it	 has	 facilitated	 the	 signing	 of	 more	memorandums	of	understanding	between	different	northern	regions,	and	that	“it’s	become	a	place	for	people	in	the	Arctic	that	haven’t	had	a	regular	venue	to	meet	over	business	issues”	(quoted	in	Quinn	2016).	This	privileging	of	the	AEC	has	led	some,	such	as	the	Inuit	leader	(and	former	Canadian	Arctic	ambassador)	Mary	Simon,	to	raise	concerns	over	the	undue	influence	that	this	 is	giving	large	corporations	over	policy	setting	in	the	Arctic	(Axworthy	and	Simon	2015).				Arctic	Council	Working	Groups	Along	with	the	meetings	bringing	together	the	representatives	from	all	the	Arctic	countries	and	 the	 permanent	 participants,	 the	 six	 working	 groups	 are	 the	 main	 way	 in	 which	 the	activities	of	the	Arctic	Council	(as	opposed	to	the	AEC)	are	conducted.	These	working	groups	cover	a	broad	range	of	subjects	from	emergency	preparedness	to	climate	change.	They	are	composed	 of	 representatives	 from	 sectorial	 ministries,	 researchers,	 the	 permanent	participants	at	the	Arctic	Council,	and	national	governments.	While	scientifically	oriented	and	not	directly	associated	with	commercial	 interests,	 the	reports,	maps,	 impact	assessments,	graphs,	 tables,	predictions,	 trend	analyses,	 and	 charts	produced	by	 these	working	groups	help	describe	the	present	and,	also	chart	a	course	for	the	future	of	resource	exploitation	in	the	Arctic.	When	combined	with	cost-benefit	analysis	and	risk	assessments,	these	outputs	“have	a	visceral	impact	and	contribute	to	particular	neo-liberal	and	rationalist	strategies	of	rendering	spaces	such	as	the	Arctic	governable”	(Dodds	2012:	15).	An	example	of	this,	the	 21 Arctic	Marine	Shipping	Assessment	was	undertaken	by	the	Protection	of	the	Arctic	Marine	Environment	working	group.	After	considering	a	multitude	of	variables,	the	report	focuses	on	two—governance	as	well	as	resources	and	trade—to	design	four	possible	future	outcomes.	These	outcomes	provide	the	categorization	and	order	that	serve	as	a	“roadmap	forward”	for	future	development	(Brigham	et	al.	2009).				New	Constitutionalism	Accompanying	the	spread	of	market	civilisation,	it	is	likely	that	we	would	be	able	to	witness	the	 narrowing	 of	 popular	 participation	 in	 organisations	 and	 forums	 propagating	 the	neoliberal	 agenda.	 The	 purpose	 of	 this	 new	 institutionalism	 is	 to	 insulate	 democratic	accountability	or	popular	scrutiny	in	order	to	protect	the	interests	of	the	historic	bloc,	and	is	often	 seen	 surrounding	 economically	 oriented	 institutions	 (Gill	 1992:	 165).	 Not	 seeing	evidence	of	new	constitutionalism	would	not	totally	disprove	the	theory,	however,	as	 it	 is	could	be	that	this	process	is	still	in	its	nascent	stages.			The	Arctic	Economic	Council	The	 AEC	 set	 itself	 up	 as	 the	 premier	 venue	 for	 coordinating	 business	 in	 the	 Arctic.	Headquartered	 in	 Tromsø,	Norway,	 alongside	 the	Arctic	 Council,	 the	 former	 has	 branded	itself	 as	 the	 primary	 forum	 for	 interaction	 between	 the	 latter	 and	 the	 wider	 business	community.	Entirely	separate	from	the	Council,	it	is	not	yet	known	how	the	two	organisations	will	work	together.	This	separation	does	mean	that	the	AEC	is	not	bound	by	the	accountability	mechanisms	or	transparency	of	the	Council.		In	an	interview	with	Arctic	Deeply,	the	chair	of	the	AEC	and	vice	president	of	external	affairs	of	Alaska’s	Arctic	Slope	Regional	Corporation,	Tara	Sweeney,	bills	the	organisation	as	even	more	inclusive	than	the	Council.	She	argues	that	the	differentiating	factor	“between	the	AEC	and	the	Arctic	Council	 is	that	the	permanent	participants	have	voting	privileges	within	the	AEC”	(quoted	in	Windeyer	2016).	What	this	actually	entails	is	unclear	as	the	Arctic	Council	 22 does	not	actually	vote	on	anything,	so	not	having	voting	privileges	is	irrelevant.	Moreover,	nowhere	 in	 the	 AEC’s	 terms	 of	 reference—or	 any	 other	 document	 for	 that	matter—is	 it	specified	what	is	to	be	voted	on,	or	even	that	votes	take	place.	Even	if	these	votes	are	taking	place,	the	AEC	is	an	echo	chamber:	all	those	chosen	to	participate	have	already	bought	into	the	 neoliberal	 rationale	 being	 propagated.	 Instead	 of	 providing	 a	 legitimately	 different	perspective	grounded	 in	a	different	mode	of	production,	 those	who	have	been	chosen	to	represent	Indigenous	peoples	are	already	well	entrenched	in	the	neoliberal	system.	From	an	uncritical	perspective,	this	legitimizes	the	institution	by	making	it	“Indigenous	approved.”			When	 asked	 how	 the	 AEC	 proposes	 to	 engage	 with	 environmental	 groups	 critical	 of	 its	message,	Sweeney’s	response	was	that	the	AEC	will	prioritize	the	local	and	accuses	“those	who	want	to	lock	up	large	swathes	of	land	throughout	the	Arctic	without	talking	to	the	local	people”	of	doing	a	“huge	disservice”	 to	 the	 region	 (quoted	 in	Windeyer	2016).	While	she	highlights	that	the	AEC		will	serve	as	a	forum	for	dialogue	between	these	groups,	there	is	little	evidence	to	suggest	that	this	is	happening.	Instead,	it	appears	that	environmental	concerns	are	only	legitimate	if	they	originate	from	within	the	echo	chamber.	Taken	altogether,	the	AEC	is	shielded	from	scrutiny	from	the	Arctic	Council	and	non-consenting	Indigenous	perspectives,	and	delegitimizes	counter-hegemonic	environmentalism	by	adopting	a	“northerners	know	best”	approach.		The	Arctic	Five	The	Arctic	Five	is	an	informal	group	composed	of	the	Arctic	littoral	states:	Denmark,	Russia,	the	United	States,	Canada,	and	Norway.	 It	has	draw	much	criticism	 from	the	other	Arctic	states	and	Indigenous	groups	for	meeting	in	Illulisat,	Greenland,	in	2008	and	Chelsea,	Canada,	in	2010	without	them.	More	recently,	in	2015,	the	same	countries	met	in	Oslo	and	signed	a	Declaration	Concerning	the	Prevention	of	Unregulated	High	Seas	Fishing	in	the	Central	Arctic	Ocean—again	without	formally	consulting	other	Arctic	countries,	such	as	Iceland	that	draws	a	substantial	portion	of	its	GDP	from	fisheries,	or	Indigenous	groups.			 23 Whether	or	not	this	 is	a	conscious	decision	to	 limit	 the	pool	of	 those	 involved	 in	decision	making	in	the	Arctic	is	hard	to	tell.	The	Inuit	Circumpolar	Declaration	on	Sovereignty	in	the	Arctic,	drafted	and	signed	in	the	wake	of	the	first	meeting	of	the	Arctic	Five,	is	revealing	of	the	 frustration	 of	 the	 Inuit	 at	 being	 excluded.	 The	 declaration	 reaffirms	 the	 need	 to	 be	consulted	 on	 developments	 in	 the	 region	 and	 asserts	 a	 right	 of	 veto	 over	 development	projects—it	is	not	the	product	of	a	community	that	feels	adequately	involved	in	the	decisions	affecting	their	future.	Duane	Smith,	the	President	of	the	Inuit	Circumpolar	Council,	summed	up	 his	 thoughts	 on	 being	 excluded	 from	 the	 2010	meeting	 by	 comparing	 it	 to	when	 the	Stephen	Harper	government	controversially	prorogued	the	Canadian	Parliament	in	2008	to	avoid	 a	 federal	 election:	 “He	 prorogued	 the	 Arctic	 Council	 and	 essentially	 shut	 down	meaningful	dialogue	on	the	whole	Arctic”	(quoted	in	Windeyer	2010).			Alice	Rogoff,	the	Alaska	Dispatch,	and	the	Arctic	Circle	In	an	article	published	in	The	Washington	Post,	Julia	Duin	chronicles	how	Alice	Rogoff,	the	wife	of	billionaire	David	Rubenstein	and	a	formidable	investor	in	her	own	right,	came	to	buy	The	Alaska	Dispatch.	Beginning	as	a	news	blog	in	2008	run	by	three	journalists,	Rogoff	agreed	to	buy	90	percent	of	the	business	and	massively	expand	operations.	In	2014	it	was	announced	that	the	Alaska	Dispatch	would	buy	out	its	competitor,	the	Anchorage	Daily	News,	becoming	by	far	the	most	widely	read	newspaper	 in	the	state	(Duin	2015).	This	was	met	with	much	fanfare	and	was	painted	as	the	victory	of		David,	the	feisty	web	start-up,	over		Goliath,	the	well-established	traditional	newspaper	(Sirota	2014).			In	addition	to	disrupting	and	redefining	media	coverage	in	Alaska,	the	rise	of	the	Dispatch	is	mired	in	controversy.	A	journalist	for	the	paper,	Michael	Carey,	is	critical	of	the	Dispatch’s	decision	to	stop	running	unsigned	editorials	or	endorsements,	questioning	why	any	major	newspaper	 would	 give	 up	 this	 influence	 and	 effectively	 narrow	 their	 basis	 for	 critical	journalism.	He	concedes	 that,	 “I	guess	 some	people	are	happy	with	what	Alice	has	done:	legislators	and	big	business.	Maybe	that	was	the	goal	all	along”	(quoted	in	Duin	2015).	In	a	similar	vein,	others	question	how	extensively	the	paper	covers	the	proceedings	of	the	Carlyle	 24 Group,	 an	 equity	 firm	 co-founded	by	Rogoff’s	 husband	with	 extensive	 dealings	 in	Alaska,	including	with	the	Alaska	Permanent	Fund	(Sirota	2014),	and	her	close	ties	to	the	political	elite	in	both	Washington,	D.C.	and	Alaska.	Recently	one	of	the	founders	of	the	Dispatch,	Tony	Hopfinger,	left	after	a	dispute	with	Rogoff	about	bringing	in	corporate	interests	to	fund	the	paper	(Andersen	2016).				Beyond	 Alaska,	 Rogoff	 and	 the	 Dispatch	 rose	 to	 prominence	 across	 the	 larger	 Arctic	community	through	the	now	annual	Arctic	Circle	conference	hosted	in	Reykjavík.	Co-founded	with	then	President	of	Iceland	Ólafur	Ragnar	Grímsson,	the	goal	of	this	conference	was	to	expand	the	conversation	on	Arctic	issues.	Now	in	its	third	year,	the	Arctic	Circle	is	attended	by	 political	 and	 business	 leaders	 from	 around	 the	 world.	 While	 environmental	 activists,	academics,	Indigenous	representatives,	and	other	stakeholders	are	invited	and	do	participate,	the	 interests	 of	 large	 corporations	 and	 business	 delegations	 organised	 by	 national	governments	 take	 precedence.	 From	 personal	 experience,	 although	 billed	 as	 a	means	 to	expand	dialogue	on	Arctic	issues,	the	Arctic	Circle	(and	other	large	conferences	on	the	region),	provide	 little	to	no	time	for	questions,	preventing	a	critical	engagement	with	the	subjects	being	discussed.	These	large	regional	conferences	have	become,	for	all	intents	and	purposes,	another	form	of	marketing	for	corporate	interests	supported	by	national	governments.			Both	 the	Alaska	Dispatch	 and	 the	 rise	 of	 corporate	 conferences	 are	 examples	 of	wealthy	interests	 controlling	 the	 space	 for	 information-sharing	 and	debate	on	Arctic	 issues.	 If	 the	most	widely	read	newspaper	in	Alaska	willingly	hamstrings	 its	own	ability	to	be	influential	and	has	close	ties	to	both	the	political	and	business	elites	of	the	state,	it	suggests	a	limiting	of	the	debate	to	terms	set	by	the	dominant	historic	bloc.	Similarly,	despite	their	stated	goals,	the	Arctic	Circle	limits	debate	by	devoting	the	major	plenaries	to	corporations	and	heads	of	state,	while	academics	and	activists	are	relegated	to	small	breakout	sessions.	In	both	cases,	the	 interests	 of	 the	 historic	 bloc	 are	 shielded	 from	 critique	 in	 forums	 that	 are	 normally	thought	 of	 as	 being	 specifically	 designed	 for	 the	 purpose	 of	 holding	 those	 in	 power	accountable.		 25 	Increasing	inequality	Some	 of	 the	 by-products	 of	 disciplinary	 neoliberalism	 include	 increasing	 inequality,	 the	fractionalisation	of	labour,	and	the	prioritisation	of	elite	interests	(Gill	2003;	Bieler	2003).	This	should	be	visible	not	only	 in	 terms	of	 increasing	 income	 inequality,	but	also	 in	 the	 socio-economic	 problems	 associated	 with	 inequality	 ranging	 from	 substance	 abuse	 to	homelessness.	According	to	Gill,	this	should	also	disproportionately	affect	women	(2003).	As	information	on	these	points	should	be	readily	available,	if	there	were	no	indications	of	these	trends	being	present	it	would	be	a	significant	blow	against	the	theory.			Dismantling	of	welfare	systems	Synonymous	around	the	world	with	their	universalist	welfare	systems,	the	Nordic	model	is	built	upon	 free	market	 capitalism	moderated	by	 collective	bargaining	and	comprehensive	welfare	 policies.	 Given	 these	 strong	 social-corporatist	 leanings,	 and	 the	 significant	 public	support	 for	 this	 approach,	 neoliberal	 policies	 would	 seem	 a	 strange	 fit	 for	 the	 region.	Nonetheless,	 several	 scholars	 have	 traced	 a	 neoliberal	 shift	 in	 these	 countries	 (see	Abrahamson	2010;	Dahl	2012).	Explaining	this	apparent	contradiction,	Kuhnle	describes	the	emergence	of	a	“post-welfare	state”	where	subsidies	are	 less	generous	and	provide	 for	a	different	range	of	provisions	(2000,	118).	In	light	of	the	region’s	traditional	dependence	on	public	 services	 and	 transfer	 payments,	 this	 selective	dismantling	of	 the	welfare	 system	 is	leaving	northern	communities	increasingly	vulnerable	(Duhaime	2004,	81).				As	much	was	confirmed	by	a	study	entitled	“Neoliberal	governance,	sustainable	development	and	 local	 communities	 in	 the	 Barents	 Region.”	 In	 their	 findings	 the	 nine	 researchers	demonstrate	 how	 five	 communities	 in	 Norway,	 Sweden,	 Finland,	 and	 Russia	 have	 been	affected	 by	 the	 shift	 to	 a	 neoliberal	 form	 of	 governance	 that	 focuses	 on	 the	 industries	highlighted	 in	 their	 respective	 national	 Arctic	 strategies.	 They	 conclude	 that	 neoliberal	policies	 have	 taken	 hold	 and	 that	 they	 are	 in	 part	 to	 blame	 for	 the	 rising	 poverty	 and	inequality	 of	 the	Barents	 region	 (both	 vis-à-vis	 other	 parts	 of	 the	 country	 and	within	 the	 26 Barents	region	itself),	as	they	“make	natural	resources	accessible	to	international	actors,	add	local	responsibilities	and	extend	competition	to	all	social	relations”	(Tennberg	et	al.	2014,	69).		Outside	of	the	Nordic	countries	and	Russia,	Canada’s	Arctic	faces	substantial	socio-economic	problems	that	are	not	being	effectively	mitigated	by	the	welfare	system.	Originally	set	up	as	a	means	of	sedentarizing	and	controlling	the	Indigenous	peoples	in	the	region,	the	welfare	system	imposed	by	the	Canadian	government	 led	to	feelings	of	disconnect	 from	the	 land,	dependency	on	government	services,	and	a	rise	in	social	problems	ranging	from	alcoholism	to	unemployment	(Légaré	2008,	101).	While	it	is	fair	to	say	that	this	colonial	legacy	is	at	the	heart	 of	 many	 of	 today’s	 issues,	 recent	 attempts	 to	 reform	 the	 system	 along	 neoliberal	governance	principles	have	exacerbated	problems.	One	study,	for	example,	found	that	the	the	roll	back	of	federally	sponsored	social	and	affordable	housing	programs,	the	privatisation	of	the	housing	market,	and	the	centralisation	of	northern	communities	completely	failed	to	address	the	problems	of	homelessness	in	the	North	and	that	the	status	quo	they	have	created	is	“ineffective,	costly,	and	damaging	to	individuals	and	communities”	(Young	and	Moses	2013:	18).		It	appears	that	welfare	systems	across	the	Arctic	countries	are	all	facing	similar	pressures	to	reform	along	the	 lines	dictated	by	models	of	neoliberal	governance.	This	 is	not	to	say	the	systems	themselves	are	necessarily	comparable:	someone	in	Hammerfest	is	much	better	off	than	someone	 in	 Inuvik.	Though	each	system	 is	unique	 in	 terms	of	 its	composition,	social	salience,	and	comprehensiveness,	the	erosion	of	services	in	the	face	of	neoliberal	reforms	remains	constant.			Women	in	the	Arctic	The	economic	shifts	in	the	Arctic	have	had	important	impacts	on	the	social	fabric	of	northern	communities,	 in	 particular	 on	 women.	 The	 projects	 being	 developed	 are	 largely	 in	 the	resource	sector	and	often	 require	 labour	 in	excess	of	what	 local	 communities	are	able	 to	provide.	Large	numbers	of	predominantly	male	transient	workers	are	brought	into	rural	areas	 27 to	fill	this	gap.	These	“man	camps”	generate	an	informal	economy	of	prostitution,	drugs,	and	alcohol,	leading	to	increased	levels	of	gender-related	violence,	human	trafficking,	and	rape	(Sweet	2014).	This	was	true	of	Alaska	during	the	oil	boom	in	the	1970s	which	generated	a	massive	increase	in	prostitution	and	incidents	of	rape	which,	at	the	time,	were	already	the	highest	in	the	entire	United	States	(The	New	York	Times	1974).	Given	their	already	precarious	situation,	these	camps	have	in	the	past,	and	continue	to,	disproportionately	affect	Indigenous	women	(Sweet	2014,	1178).		More	recently,	a	2010	poll	found	that	37	percent	of	women	in	Alaska	had	experienced	sexual	violence,	indicating	that	problems	persist	in	this	resource	driven	state.	This	was	corroborated	by	another	study	conducted	by	the	Federation	of	Natives	that	found	that	incidents	of	rape	in	Alaska	was	at	4	times	the	national	level	and	sexual	violence	12	times	higher	than	the	national	average.	 In	 Canada,	 Pauktuutit,	 an	 Inuit’s	 women’s	 group,	 reported	 that	 27	 percent	 of	women	 in	 Nunavut	 have	 been	 forced	 into	 sexual	 activity	 and	 57	 percent	 have	 suffered	physical	violence	(McGrath	2014).	The	Government	of	Canada	further	estimates	that	only	29	percent	of	crimes	are	actually	reported,	with	a	report	by	the	Department	of	Justice	noting	“It	is	truly	indeed	a	war	zone	in	some	households,	with	no	protection	for	the	most	vulnerable”	(ibid.;	see	Ministers	for	the	Status	of	Women	for	a	more	in-depth	breakdown).	The	limited	welfare	services	mean	that	only	7	out	of	53	communities	in	Nunavut	have	a	women’s	shelter.	And,	of	note,	these	problems	are	also	true	in	the	extremely	progressive	Nordic	countries—albeit	to	a	lesser	extent—and	was	the	subject	of	a	major	conference	entitled	“Arctic	women	against	men's	violence”	organised	by	the	Nordic	Council	of	Ministers	in	2009.				Across	 the	 shrinking	 icecap,	 several	 scholars	 have	 noted	 the	 shifting	 attitudes	 towards	prostitution,	and	women	more	generally,	as	the	former	Soviet	Union	transitioned	towards	a	capitalist	market	based	system.	Although	they	note	that	prostitution	did	exist	in	the	Soviet	Union,	it	was	nowhere	near	as	prolific	as	the	post-Soviet	years	when	Moscow	emerged	as	a	sex	tourism	destination	for	wealthy	businessmen	and	“foreign	currency”	prostitution	became	increasingly	 common	 (Avgerinos	 2006).	 Furthermore,	 Maria	 Lvova	 argues	 that,	 as	 this	 28 evolved,	liberalism	engendered	the	idea	in	Russian	society	that	any	“real	man”	had	the	right	“to	have	sex	and	to	be	entertained	by	women	whether	she	is	his	wife	or	a	prostitute”	(2013,	264).	These	attitudes	are	reflected	on	Sakhalin	Island—made	famous	by	Anton	Chekhov	over	a	century	ago—which	experienced	an	energy	boom	it	the	late	1990s.	In	addition	to	increased	numbers	of	foreign	business	leaders	and	mafia,	a	BBC	report	from	the	era	noted	the	presence	of	a	“small	army	of	prostitutes”	that	had	sprung	up	(1997).			Taken	 altogether,	 it	 appears	 that	 the	main	 driver	 of	many	northern	 economies,	 resource	extraction,	 appears	 to	 be	 systematically	 marginalizing	 women.	 This,	 combined	 with	 the	dismantling	 of	 welfare	 systems	 across	 the	 Arctic,	 leave	 women—Indigenous	 women	 in	particular—disadvantaged	despite	achieving	higher	levels	of	education,	and	adapting	more	readily	to	a	changing	Arctic	(Morgan	2008).			Counter-hegemonic	forces	and	trasformismo	Counter-hegemonic	 forces,	 as	 Robinson	 points	 out,	 are	 likely	 to	 arise	 through	 popular	resistance	 movements,	 that	 is	 to	 say	 social	 forces	 coalescing	 around	 an	 anti-neoliberal	agenda	(for	example	the	Seattle	protests	of	1999),	or	through	elites	from	countries	that	have	yet	to	be	co-opted	into	the	transnational	capitalist	class	(2005,	571).	As	there	is	a	high	chance	of	 seeing	 counter-hegemonic	 forces,	 not	 witnessing	 this	 would	 be	 a	 strong	 blow	 to	 the	explanatory	power	of	this	theory.			Furthermore,	if	a	historic	bloc	were	in	a	position	of	supremacy	or	hegemony	in	the	Arctic,	they	would	seek	to	secure	their	position	by	co-opting	potential	threats	through	trasformismo.	This	 process	 could	manifest	 in	multiple	ways,	 such	 as	 the	 integration	 of	 these	 divergent	interests	into	institutions	dominated	by	the	hegemonic	bloc	or	by	cultivating	legitimacy	by	making	small	concessions	to	these	groups.	As	this	process	would	be	difficult	to	observe,	let	alone	demonstrate,	if	it	were	not	present	it	would	not	deal	a	serious	blow	to	the	theory.	On	the	other	hand,	witnessing	it	would	lend	strong	support	to	the	neo-Gramscian	explanation.					 29 The	Arctic	Council	Often	lauded	as	being	unique	for	including	six	indigenous	groups	as	permanent	participants,	the	Arctic	Council	tends	to	be	viewed	as	extremely	inclusive	relative	to	other	international	organizations.	This	is	made	all	the	more	meaningful	given	that	these	permanent	participants	are	 often	 on	 the	 other	 side	 of	 the	 debate	when	 it	 comes	 to	 economic	 development	 (its	relationship	with	environmental	protection,	and	the	benefits	to	northern	residents)	 in	the	Arctic.			Their	position	does	indeed	appear	to	be	a	powerful	one	that	could,	in	theory,	translate	into	substantial	 influence	 over	 Arctic	 affairs—in	 particular	 with	 respect	 to	 domains	 where	Indigenous	peoples	have	extensive	experience	and	regional	issues.	This	is	reinforced	by	the	consensus	based	decision	making	process	at	the	heart	of	the	Arctic	Council	as	it	could	give	the	permanent	participants	more	leverage.	This	narrative	is	often	picked	up	by	the	media	and	enjoys	some	currency	among	scholars	who	have	pointed	to	how	this	model	could	be	a	means	through	which	 to	 empower	 Indigenous	 groups	 elsewhere	 in	 the	world	 (for	 example,	 see	Koivurova	 and	 Heinämäki	 2006).	 This	 narrative	 is	 also	 echoed	 among	 the	 permanent	participants	themselves.	In	the	words	of	the	vice	president	of	the	Saami	Council,	Olav	Mathias	Eira:	“we	the	Saami	have	almost	the	same	power	as	the	US	[in	the	Arctic	Council];	we	just	lack	the	money”	(quoted	in	Plaut	2012,	203).			When	put	under	careful	scrutiny,	however,	this	power	does	not	appear	to	be	as	strong	as	it	is	 portrayed.	 Indigenous	 groups	 are	hampered	by	 a	 lack	of	 funding	 as	no	 central	 funding	mechanism	exists.	Suggestions	to	implement	such	a	mechanism	have	stagnated	as	it	is	clear	that	 states	 prefer	 the	 existing	 setup	 (Gamle	 2015).	 This	 ultimately	 means	 that	 if	 the	permanent	 participants	 lack	 their	 own	 resources,	 they	 are	 entirely	 dependent	 on	 their	regional	 or	 national	 governments	 for	 funding.	 This	 limits	 their	 ability	 to	 participate	meaningfully	in	basic	Council	activities	let	alone	exert	influence	over	Council	decisions	(Munk-Gordon	Arctic	Security	Program	2012).	Beyond	this	economic	impediment,	indigenous	groups	are	also	politically	 subordinated.	 Illustrative	of	 this,	 the	Russian	Association	of	 Indigenous	 30 Peoples	of	the	North	(RAIPON)	was	suspended	(temporarily,	until	all	the	Senior	Arctic	Officials,	including	the	Russian	one,	objected)	by	the	Russian	Ministry	of	Justice	in	a	move	that	many	have	speculated	was	in	retaliation	for	RAIPON's	opposition	to	resource	extraction	in	Siberia.			This	co-opting	of	groups	that	might	oppose	the	neoliberal	agenda	is	not	limited	to	indigenous	groups,	 but	 instead	extends	 to	other	potential	 challenges	 to	 the	established	order	 in	 the	Arctic:	NGOs	and	non-Arctic	 states.	 In	 this	 the	Arctic	Council	has	also	been	successful.	By	including	the	World	Wildlife	Fund	(WEF)	as	one	of	the	 initial	observers,	 the	Arctic	Council	shielded	themselves	from	critique	and	boosted	their	legitimacy	among	certain	environmental	groups.	This	effect	may	be	tampered	by	reoccurring	accusations	that	the	WEF	is	already	one	of	the	most	corporate-friendly	environmental	NGOs	(Glüsung	and	Klawitter	2012)	and	the	reluctance	to	admit	more	radical	environmental	organisations	such	as	Greenpeace.			Mirroring	this	process,	the	Arctic	Council	has	admitted	a	dozen	non-Arctic	observer	states.	In	a	statement	following	the	2013	addition	of	six	non-Arctic	observer	states	Carl	Bildt,	the	then	Swedish	Foreign	Minister,	outlined	how	this	was	a	de	facto	recognition	of	the	pre-eminence	of	the	sovereignty	of	the	permanent	members	in	the	Arctic	(Lee	Myers	2013).	This	is	not	to	say	that	this	precludes	the	elites	from	these	non-Arctic	countries	seeking	influence	through	other	means,	but	it	does	minimize	the	possibility	of	an	alternative	institution	being	set	up	in	opposition	 to	 the	Arctic	Council.	 It	 also	 funnels	 the	potential	 financial	and	political	boons	brought	by	these	non-Arctic	states	through	the	channels	delineated	by	the	dominant	classes,	such	as	trade	and	foreign	investment.	Significantly,	new	observer	states	include	China	and	India.		This	appears	to	indicate	that	the	Arctic	Council	is	a	sophisticated	instrument	for	the	dominant	historic	bloc	to	assimilate	counter-hegemonic	forces.	The	illusion	of	power	is	given	to	groups	who	 threaten	 this	 hegemonic	 project	 both	 in	 order	 to	 pacify	 them	 and	 to	 legitimize	 the	institution.	The	 fact	 that	 the	Arctic	Council	 is	 seen	as	so	 inclusive	 is	what	makes	 it	 such	a	powerful	yet	subtle	tool.	What’s	more,	many	believe	it	to	be	true.	Even	among	indigenous	 31 leaders	who	feel	that	they	are	being	marginalized	in	the	Council,	such	as	the	President	of	the	Inuit	 Circumpolar	 Council	 Canada,	 Duane	 Smith,	 they	 nevertheless	 feel	 the	 need	 to	“continuously	re-demonstrate	[their]	role	and	[their]	position	on	the	Arctic	Council”	(quoted	in	Rynor	2011).			In	this	way	the	Arctic	Council	has	been	successful	in	assimilating	potentially	dangerous	forces,	as	even	those	who	criticize	it	for	marginalizing	them	feel	compelled	to	continue	participating,	as	 opposed	 to	 potentially	 setting	 up	 an	 alternative	 to	 challenge	 the	 dominance	 of	 this	institution.	Their	continued	adherence	further	legitimizes	it.	Despite	this,	the	Arctic	Council	being	a	 science	based	organisation	originally	 founded	 for	 environmental	protection,	does	appear	to	be	less	dominated	by	the	neoliberal	agenda	than	more	recent	institutions.	Mary	Simon,	 the	 Inuit	 leader	who	 championed	 the	 creation	 of	 the	 Arctic	 Council,	 warned	 in	 a	commentary	carried	in	the	Globe	and	Mail	in	2015	that	this	could	still	all	change	depending	on	what	path	future	Chairmanships	pursue.			Royal	Dutch	Shell	in	the	Arctic	The	recent	decision	by	Royal	Dutch	Shell	not	to	drill	oil	and	gas	in	the	Alaskan	Arctic	 is	an	excellent	 example	 of	 social	 forces	 coalescing	 behind	 an	 anti-neoliberal	 agenda.	 After	 a	lengthy	campaign	by	environmental	and	indigenous	activists	that	involved	everything	from	“kayaktivists”	taking	over	Seattle's	port	in	protest,	to	Greenpeace	tailing	Shell's	contracted	oil	rig	across	the	Pacific	Ocean,	the	announcement	by	Shell	was	hailed	as	a	major	victory	for	social	justice	and	an	unprecedented	defeat	for	“big	oil.”			Contrary	to	the	narrative	promoted	by	these	ecological	activists,	business	analysts	familiar	with	 the	 situation	 have	 noted	 that,	 though	 the	 reputational	 damage	 caused	 by	 the	 anti-drilling	 campaign	 may	 have	 factored	 into	 their	 decision,	 the	 decisive	 factor	 was	 that	 it	ultimately	was	not	profitable	due	to	insufficient	finds	and	the	low	price	of	oil.	As	Shell's	top	executive	Ann	Pickard	explained,	offshore	Arctic	oil	extraction	is	only	competitive	when	oil	is	at	$70	a	barrel	and	reasonable	at	$110	a	barrel	(quoted	in	Barrett	2015).	This	is	a	far	cry	from	 32 prices	that	remain	below	the	$50	mark.	Shell	knew	going	into	this	venture	that	it	would	in	all	likelihood	not	be	extracting	oil	from	the	Chukchi	Sea	in	the	near	future	given	the	price	of	oil	and	the	challenges	of	operating	in	the	North	American	Arctic.	Instead,	as	Michael	Byers	points	out,	the	value	was	that	“the	stock	prices	of	publicly	traded	oil	companies,	such	as	Shell,	are	partly	based	on	their	reserve	ratios	–	that	is	to	say,	the	difference	between	the	amounts	of	oil	they	are	currently	exploiting	and	the	amounts	they	have	found	but	not	yet	tapped”	(2015).	If	 Shell	 had	been	able	 to	prove	 they	had	access	 to	massive	Arctic	 reserves	 it	would	have	proved	worthwhile,	instead	they	pulled	out	in	light	of	insufficient	findings.			The	official	 corporate	 line,	while	 conceding	 the	economic	 factors,	was	 the	“unpredictable	federal	 regulatory	 environment	 in	offshore	Alaska”	 (Shell	 2015).	 This	was	 seized	upon	by	prominent	 political	 and	 business	 figures,	 notably	 the	 high-profile	 Alaska	 Senator	 Lisa	Murkowski,	who	called	for	a	“sensible	regulatory	system”	designed	to	promote	the	growth	of	the	energy	industry	in	Alaska	as	“America	should	lead	the	way”	(quoted	in	Henry	2015).	Couched	in	rhetoric	of	the	common	good,	here	the	transnational	capitalist	class	is	not	only	promulgating	their	hegemonic	project	but	they	are	also	framing	the	debate	in	a	way	that	will	further	their	agenda:	government	regulation	is	seen	as	an	impediment	to	growth	which,	in	turn,	harms	America.			Clash	of	globalizations:	Russia	and	sanctions	Another	example	of	what	many	have	taken	to	be	a	defeat	for	big	business	in	the	Arctic,	in	particular	 large	multinational	oil	 and	gas	 companies,	 is	 the	 sanctions	 regime	placed	upon	Russia	by	NATO	and	EU	member	states	in	the	wake	of	the	annexation	of	Crimea	(which	covers	all	members	of	the	Arctic	Council,	obviously	excepting	Russia).	One	explanation	could	be	that	the	 Russian	 elite	 have	 yet	 to	 be	 fully	 incorporated	 into	 the	 dominant	 historic	 bloc.	 As	previously	mentioned	the	transnationalist	capitalist	class	“continues	for	the	most	part	to	take	the	geographically	specific	form	of	an	Atlantic	ruling	class”	incorporating	North	America	and	North-Western	Europe	(Carrol	2009:	60).			 33 Following	the	collapse	of	the	Soviet	Union,	an	oligarchic	class	emerged	that	quickly	moved	to	seize	as	much	as	possible	of	the	industry,	resources,	and	infrastructure	possible.	Content	to	simply	agglomerate	their	varied	possessions,	these	businesses	were	not	well	run	and	faced	profitability	problems	before	being	systematically	dismantled	by	Putin	beginning	in	the	early	2000s.	 Following	on	 the	heels	of	 the	 collapse	of	 the	 first	wave	of	oligarchs,	 a	new	“state	oligarch”	emerged.	As	Richard	Sakwa	puts	it:	“business	was	now	taken	out	of	politics,	[and]	politics	entered	ever	more	decisively	into	business”	(2008,	188).	This	convoluted	evolution	has	 created	 a	 complex	 intersection	 of	 pre-Soviet,	 Soviet,	 and	 post-Soviet	 economies.	Capitalist	ideas	of	private	property	coexisting	alongside	alternative	economic	logics,	such	as	those	practised	by	Indigenous	reindeer	herders	in	the	Arctic,	 is	emblematic	of	the	Russian	experience	(Pavlovskaya	2013,	1295).		Nonetheless,	 the	 Russian	 state-civil	 society	 complex	 has	 embraced	 neoliberal	 ideals,	 but	within	the	context	of	a	crony-capitalist	 form	of	state,	and	 integrated	the	country	 into	the	global	division	of	labour.	When	it	comes	to	the	Russian	Arctic,	this	process	has	been	relatively	slow	 and	 has	 centred	 around	 a	 two-pronged	 strategy	 of	 developing	 the	 vast	 resource	potential	 of	 Russia’s	 North	 (the	 USGS	 report	 placed	 a	 majority	 of	 resources	 in	 Russia’s	exclusive	 economic	 zone)	 and	 developing	 the	 Northern	 Sea	 Route	 into	 a	 viable	 shipping	corridor	(Klimenko	2014).			Russian	state	oligarchs	thus	cooperate	with	the	West	when	it	is	convenient,	such	as	in	Arctic	offshore	extraction	where	they	require	technology	transfers	from	American	and	European	corporations,	 but	 promote	 their	 interests	 in	 competition	 with	 Western	 ones	 both	domestically	and	in	their	near	abroad	when	it	is	not	(Rigi	2005,	203).	And	although	there	is	close	cooperation	between	Russian	and	Western	elites	on	some	issues,	the	seriousness	of	the	violation—the	conquest	and	annexation	of	Crimea—could	have	been	perceived	as	too	threatening	to	the	neoliberal	order.	In	this	way,	punitive	measures	were	made	possible	by	the	 fact	 that	 Russian	 elites	 are	 not	 part	 of	 the	 current	 historic	 bloc,	 and	 required	by	 the	severity	of	the	transgression.		 34 	Another	aspect	of	this	story	is	the	ways	in	which	corporate	interests	have	remained	shielded,	albeit	it	in	a	limited	fashion,	from	the	effects	of	sanctions	through	the	various	loopholes	and	exceptions	in	the	sanctions	regime	that	allow	business	to	continue.	An	example	of	this	is	that	oil	and	natural	gas	remain	exportable	without	constraint.	This	seems	to	be	overshadowed	in	the	news	by	several	high	profile	examples	of	sanctions,	 for	example	Exxon	putting	a	$700	million	project	with	Rosneft	on	hold.	The	reality	is	that	both	European	and	US	companies	are	still	able	to	bid	and	work	in	Russia's	Arctic	as	sanctions	do	not	apply	to	foreign	subsidiaries.	For	example	Schlumberger	Ltd.,	the	world's	largest	oil	services	company,	is	based	in	Houston	but	maintains	a	Russian	subsidiary	that	is	still	actively	bidding	on	projects	in	Russia's	Arctic.	Schlumberger	has	bid	on	other	projects	alongside	another	Texan	company,	Baker	Hughes	Inc.,	in	 the	 region	 using	 its	 Panamanian	 subsidiary	 (Khrennikova	 and	 Lemeshko	 2015).	 More	recently,	General	Electric	and	Rosneft	have	announced	a	long-term	cooperation	programme	for	 joint	manufacturing;	Boeing	and	Volga-Dnepr	Group,	a	 leader	 in	 cargo	 transportation,	have	signed	a	memorandum	of	understanding	for	20	airplanes;	and	Shell,	Gazprom,	E-ON	and	OMW	signed	a	joint	venture	to	construct	a	massive	Russia-EU	gas	pipeline	(Johnsson	2016;	Marson	2016).				Another	gaping	hole	in	the	sanctions	is	that	a	firm	can	only	be	blacklisted	under	EU	and	US	sanctions	if	a	sanctioned	individual	or	group	controls	a	50	percent	stake	or	more.	Illustrative	of	 this,	 Sogaz,	 a	 firm	originally	 set	 up	 by	Gazprom	 to	 provide	 insurance	 to	 other	 Russian	companies	 that	 then	 re-insures	 its	 risk	 in	Western	markets,	 should	have	been	sanctioned	because	 of	 the	 majority	 ownership	 of	 two	 blacklisted	 firms:	 Rossiya	 Bank	 and	 Kordeks.	Instead,	 Rossiya	 offloaded	 16.2	 percent	 of	 its	 shares	 to	 a	 subsidiarity	 of	 Gazprom	which	brought	it	below	the	50	percent	threshold	two	days	before	the	cut-off	date,	allowing	it	to	escape	sanctions.	In	a	similar	example,	Gunvor,	a	massive	oil-trading	firm	co-owned	by	shell	companies	 belonging	 to	 the	 sanctioned	 Russian	 billionaire	 Gennady	 Timchenko	 and	 the	Swedish	 businessman	 Torbjorn	 Tornqvist,	 restructured	 the	 company	 and	 successfully	avoided	 sanctions—despite	 US	 insistence	 that	 Putin	 had	 an	 undisclosed	 interest	 in	 the	 35 company	(The	Economist	2015).			It	is	also	interesting	who	was	excluded	from	the	sanctions	regime.	The	Canadian	sanctions	regime,	for	example,	was	labelled	by	the	Harper	government	as	among	the	toughest	in	the	world	yet	failed	to	sanction	Vladimir	Yakunin,	a	Russian	railway	tycoon	with	close	ties	to	Putin	and	on-going	agreements	with	Quebec's	SNC-Lavalin,	the	Railway	Association	of	Canada,	and	Bombardier.	Records	show	that	top	Bombardier	officials	lobbied	Ottawa	while	the	sanctions	policy	was	being	developed,	with	six	meetings	registered	with	Canada's	official	 registry	of	lobbyists.	 Canadian	 sanctions	 against	 Rosneft,	 who	 owns	 30	 percent	 of	 the	 Cardium	Formation	oil	project	 in	Southern	Alberta,	are	similarly	weak.	Ultimately	the	sanctions	are	just	 smoke	 and	 mirrors:	 they	 give	 the	 illusion	 of	 action	 but	 protect	 the	 interests	 of	 big	business.																 36 Chapter	VI:	Conclusion	 It	appears	that	there	is	evidence	supporting	a	neo-Gramscian	explanation	of	cooperation	in	the	 Arctic.	 The	 strategies	 and	 policies	 deployed	 in	 the	 region	 espouse	 a	 neoliberal	understanding	of	development	that	suggests	a	conscious	effort	to	spread	market	civilisation.	This	 process	 has	 been	 accompanied	 by	 the	 narrowing	 of	 democratic	 participation	 and	accountability,	be	it	through	media	censorship	or	by	creating	separate	economic	institutions	shielded	from	the	public’s	gaze.	Further	evidence	of	the	neoliberal	presence	in	the	region	are	the	socio-economic	problems	that	stem	from	the	 inequality	 induced	by	neoliberal	policies	(often	 compounded	 by	 the	 legacy	 of	 colonialism).	 And,	 while	 the	 dominant	 historic	 bloc	appears	 to	 be	 in	 a	 position	of	 supremacy	 in	 the	 region,	 and	 is	managing	 to	 co-opt	 some	elements	of	resistance,	other	counter-hegemonic	forces	have	avoided	trasformismo.	While	the	main	regional	force	that	has	yet	to	be	fully	co-opted	remains	the	Russian	state	oligarchs,	other	 groups	 include	more	 radical	 environmentalists	 such	 as	Greenpeace	 and	 elites	 from	non-Arctic	states,	such	as	China	or	India,	that	do	not	form	part	of	the	dominant	historic	bloc.			This	analysis	was	not	without	its	weaknesses,	however.	In	some	cases	the	evidence	suggested	a	 link	 that	was	 far	 from	a	 smoking	gun.	This	was	 true	of	 the	neoliberal	bias	of	 the	Arctic	Council,	 a	 scientific	 organisation	originally	 founded	 for	 environmental	 cooperation.	While	present	to	a	limited	extent,	the	Arctic	Council’s	role	in	the	spread	of	market	civilisation	does	not	appear	to	be	an	important	one.	Moreover,	the	space	limitations	of	this	project	are	such	that	 the	 surface	 can	 only	 really	 be	 scratched;	 perhaps	 a	 larger	 study	 involving	 a	 more	comprehensive	treatment	of	more	examples	would	find	much	stronger	support,	perhaps	not.	Legitimate	complaints	could	also	be	raised	concerning	the	use	of	theory.	While	I	believe	that	furthering	the	conversation	on	the	Arctic	merited	using	this	approach	purely	for	descriptive	purposes,	issues	could	be	raised	as	to	the	divorce	of	neo-Gramscianism	from	its	underlying	emancipatory	project.			Going	forward	there	are	many	avenues	to	explore.	The	role	of	Russian	state	oligarchs	in	the	 37 Arctic	(and	more	generally)	needs	to	be	examined.	Currently	they	are	cooperating	with	the	West	in	the	Arctic,	but	at	what	point	do	they	decide	to	challenge	the	dominant	historic	bloc	or,	alternatively,	become	fully	co-opted	into	it?	The	same	questions	also	apply	to	non-Arctic	elites	from	outside	the	current	historic	bloc	that	are	increasingly	seeking	a	foothold	in	the	region.	Another	avenue	involves	integrating	a	broader	diversity	of	cases.	This	analysis	focused	heavily	on	extractive	industries	due	to	their	important	influence	in	the	region	and	the	sheer	quantity	of	information	available.	Convincing	arguments	could	also	be	made	for	other	Arctic	industries	such	as	tourism,	to	name	but	one	example.			Ultimately,	while	it	may	be	premature	to	say	that	an	emerging	transnational	capitalist	class	promoting	a	neoliberal	agenda	has	achieved	hegemony	in	the	Arctic,	it	is	clear	that	they	are	quite	 present	 in	 the	 region.	 This	 lends	 credence	 to	 a	 neo-Gramscian	 explanation	 of	 the	cooperation	occurring	between	countries	 that	 remain	at	odds	elsewhere.	Furthermore,	 in	the	same	way	that	the	Arctic	is	the	canary	in	the	coalmine	of	climate	change,	the	region	also	offers	a	window	on	the	ebb	and	flow	of	competing	historic	blocs.	That	cooperation	reigns	is	not	to	say	that	there	are	no	conflicts	between	the	current	disciplinary	neoliberal	historic	bloc	and	emerging	ones,	or	that	relations	will	not	deteriorate	in	the	future.	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