Wednesday, September 11, 2019 - 12:15pm to 1:30pm
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Belfer Center Library (Room 369), Littauer Bldg, HKS, 79 JFK St., Cambridge

Greenland in a Changing Arctic

Greenland, the world's biggest island, has long held a strategic geographic and political position in global affairs. It has made headlines recently, after President Donald Trump stated he wanted to buy the island, because of its strategic location in the Arctic and its wealth of natural resources. Greenland's foreign minister, Ane Lone Bagger, had told Reuters: "We are open for business, but we’re not for sale."

 Join the Arctic Initiative for an insightful lunch with Greenland's Minister of Education, Culture, Church and Foreign Affairs, Ane Lone Bagger, about how Greenland is responding to the shifting dynamics in the Arctic as climate change is transforming the island and the waters surrounding it, opening up the region to the outside world. Moderated by Halla Hrund Logadóttir, Co-Founder and Co-Director, Arctic Initiative.

Greenland has a long history of adapting to social, political, economic, and physical change. A colony of Denmark until 1953, after which it became a constituency in the Danish Kingdom, gained home rule in 1979. On Greenland's National day, June 21st 2009, the Greenland Self-Government replaced the Home Rule Government, giving the Greenland parliament and government greater control over important areas such as trade, natural resources, fisheries, education, health, science and research, environment, and climate. The Self-Government Act further recognized of Kalaallit (Greenlanders) as a people under international law, opening the door to Greenland to become an independent state. As Greenland considers its path forward, Arctic and non-Arctic nations and stakeholders are increasingly interested in its future.

In spite of a population of mere 57,000, Greenland is a dynamic, natural island whose people enjoy a rich and diverse culture. Over 90 percent of its population is indigenous, and 75 percent of people in Greenland say they have personally experienced the effects of climate change. As the sea ice which is critical to Greenlanders' way of life fades away, so too do cultural traditions. In this discussion, Minister Ane Lone Bagger will discuss how Greenland is adapting to the dynamic future it faces and explore how Greenland can advance its goals of cultural preservation, expanded commerce, and resilience in the face of its dissolving world.

Lunch provided. RSVP to contact listed required. 

Contact Name: 

Brittany Janis

Research Areas: 

Harvard University
Center for the Environment

Address: 26 Oxford Street, 4th Floor, Cambridge
Phone: (617) 495-0368

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