ASTK15364U COURSE: Greenland at the Crossroads: Climate Change, Asian Interests in the Arctic and developments in Greenland

Volume 2015/2016

The course will consider what Greenlandic actors can do with the overall ambitions of economic development and, eventually, statehood facing several big challenges stemming from internal and external pressures in the changing geopolitical context of the Arctic: Which ideas and instruments of governance, natural resources, nation building and state formation is available for Greenland under the present circumstances? Ongoing climate changes have catapulted Greenland into the proclaimed role of the messenger of the rapid changes going on in the Arctic as a warning of future challenges globally. At the same time, Greenland is a gate to opportunities that the Arctic offers a growing world population with growing demands for natural resources that the climate change is reported to make easier accessible. The course will discuss scenarios for development in Greenland within the context of developments in the Arctic and in relations between Greenland and Denmark by focusing on dynamics in three areas of drastic change: Continuing climate change, growing Asian interests in the Arctic together with the resulting governance implications for Greenland.

Learning Outcome

The course objective is to enable students to demonstrate knowledge of the main strands of the scientific literature, reports and white papers, to apply theories and analyze one or more cases comparing single aspect or/and asses the interactions of several aspects, and be able to make informed, analytical evaluations of the developments, present situation or/and future perspectives.

Joan Nymand Larsen & Gail Fondahl (eds.) 2014. Arctic Human Development Report. Regional Processes and Global Linkages. Nordic Council of Ministers (http:/​/​​10.6027/​TN2014-567) (500 pages - selections)


+ electronic binder with articles, reports etc.

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 28
  • Total
  • 28
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Written exam
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assesment

Criteria for achieving the goals:

  • Grade 12 is given for an outstanding performance: the student lives up to the course's goal description in an independent and convincing manner with no or few and minor shortcomings
  • Grade 7 is given for a good performance: the student is confidently able to live up to the goal description, albeit with several shortcomings
  • Grade 02 is given for an adequate performance: the minimum acceptable performance in which the student is only able to live up to the goal description in an insecure and incomplete manner