The Arctic Policy Ecosystem from the Perspective of the US Executive Branch


The Arctic is hot these days, and it’s not just the climate. The United States in particular has accelerated its policy activities as we covered in a recent timeline analysis. A mere week after we published that article came the announcement by the Department of Defense that it is establishing an Arctic Strategy and Resilience Office, with an affiliated Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense to head it.

The new office announcement itself follows on the heels of two big announcements, just a month prior: the opening of the Ted Stevens Center for Arctic Security Studies, and a new Ambassador-at-Large for the Arctic Region. The proliferation of offices and roles for Arctic policy set our heads spinning, so we did what we do best, and that was to create a map of the Arctic policy ecosystem as we understand it. This is our first draft, and we will see how it proofs out over time:

One of the first things we figured out early was that we needed to choose a perspective or else end up with a Pentagon-class spaghetti monster. We chose the perspective of the Executive branch, which allowed us to lay out the various components of the Executive Office, Cabinet, and independent federal agencies cross-referenced with the coordinating entities they contribute to.

All of this flows top to bottom, left to right into the international space of the Arctic Council. We hope you find it useful, and its completion means next week we are back to work on the interactive timeline so we don’t have to keep hunting for the research links we use all the time!

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