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The Arctic is home to unique habitats that are severely threatened by the effects of climate change. The increasing loss of sea ice allows parts of the Arctic to be used more intensively than ever before, especially to pursue economic opportunities such as oil, gas, and mineral exploitation and commercial shipping, fishing, and tourism.

Some of these activities threaten the rights of indigenous and local communities and increase pressures on the region's ecosystems critically, whereas others might allow for sustainable local development in certain areas. Our work requires interdisciplinary research and a cross-sectoral understanding of the dynamics at hand, including the impacts of transboundary pollution, invasive species, and underwater noise as well as protection through different management tools such as marine protected areas.

Ecologic Institute provides analyses of international, regional, and national governance frameworks with relevance for the Arctic and develops recommendations to support sustainable environmental policy and governance for the region. Our experts draw particularly on their experiences of ocean and marine governance and the blue economy as well as on their legal expertise to cover all relevant pressures on Arctic habitats.

Ecologic Institute is also represented in national fora  such as the German Arctic Dialogue and fosters transdisciplinary exchange between young professionals with its Arctic Summer College.


Environmental Law – Ecologic Legal

Land Use






Coastal + Marine



Nature-based Solutions and Green Infrastructure

Fenja Kroos

Environmental Law – Ecologic Legal


Coastal + Marine





Arne Riedel, LLM
Coordinator Ecologic Legal
Coordinator Arctic
Senior Fellow
Selected Projects for Arctic

People in the Arctic


Image by Taken from Pixabay

The Arctic plays an essential role in sustaining ecosystems worldwide. At the same time, economic, political, scientific and touristic interests in the Arctic are growing and leave a far-reaching impact on local ecosystems and residents. The DÁVGI project aims to... Read more

Image by Taken from Pixabay

The worldwide trend of increasing urban population is also noticeable in Arctic cities. Regarding the unique importance of the Arctic for the global climate system the question arises, how the increasing population can be addressed while taking the environment and the... Read more

Arctic Policies

Development of Options for a German Environmental Policy for the Arctic
In this Project, Ecologic Institute elaborates policy options for the development of a strategy to protect the Arctic environment for the German Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU). The project entails an analysis of the... Read more

Arctic Environment

|© Richard Fitzer |
The consequences of climate change are much more visible in the Arctic than in other regions of the world. The increasing loss of sea ice allows to use parts of the Arctic Ocean for a longer time and more intensively than before. This could threaten biodiversity in the... Read more
iStock©Lya Cattel
How can we improve policy monitoring of national implementation to further protect the Arctic environment and its inhabitants? With the WWF Arctic Council Scorecards, Ecologic Institute and WWF International Arctic Programme continue and update the overview of the... Read more
How can we improve policy monitoring of national implementation to further protect the Arctic environment and its inhabitants? With the WWF Arctic Council Scorecards, Ecologic Institute and WWF International Arctic Programme undertook the effort to provide a first... Read more

Arctic Knowledge and Networks

The European Ocean Coalition (EU4Ocean) connects diverse organisations, projects and people that contribute to ocean literacy and the sustainable management of the ocean. Supported by the European Commission, this bottom-up inclusive initiative aims at uniting the... Read more

The EU4Ocean Coalition for Ocean Literacy

All projects on Arctic
Selected Publications for Arctic

Edited Volumes

This book, edited by Ecologic Institute's Brendan O'Donnell, Max Gruenig, and Arne Riedel, highlights both the diversity of perspectives and approaches to Arctic research and the inherent interdisciplinary nature of studying and understanding this incomparable region.... Read more

O'Donnell, Brendan; Max Gruenig; Arne Riedel (Eds.) 2018: Arctic Summer College Yearbook. An Interdisciplinary Look into Arctic Sustainable Development. 1st ed. Springer International Publishing Switzerland.

The Arctic region not only plays an important role in regulating the world's climate, but is also highly affected by climate change. A new book edited by Ecologic Institute's Elizabeth Tedsen, Sandra Cavalieri, and R. Andreas Kraemer addresses the significant changes... Read more

Tedsen, Elizabeth, Sandra Cavalieri, and R. Andreas Kraemer (eds.) 2014: Arctic Marine Governance. Opportunities for Transatlantic Cooperation. Heidelberg: Springer.

Recent Articles

articles first page (print version)

© cogitatio

 The advancement of governance architecture in the Arctic region and dealing with the "Arctic development paradox" have been among the most significant challenges of the circumpolar North for decades. The common denominator of both issues is the growing necessity... Read more

Michał Łuszczuk et al. 2022: Governability of Regional Challenges: The Arctic Development Paradox. Politics and Governance 2022, Volume 10, Issue 3, Pages 29–40

Project Publications

The Arctic environment faces many influences that threaten its very existence: climate change and its impacts already present challenges for many ecosystems. Economic activities within the region, as fisheries, shipping, mining and transport of resources as well as... Read more

Riedel, A., Bach, I., Abhold, K., Hoffmann, H., Stephen, K., Schopmans, H., 2020: Ökologisch nachhaltige Nutzung mit hohen Umweltstandards in der Arktis – Umweltleitlinien deutscher Arktispolitik. Abschlussbericht. Umweltbundesamt, Dessau-Roßlau.

WWF Bericht
How can we improve policy monitoring of national implementation to further protect the Arctic environment and its inhabitants? With the WWF Arctic Council Scorecards, Ecologic Institute and WWF International Arctic Programme undertook the effort to provide a first... Read more

WWF Arctic Programme (2017): WWF Arctic Council Conservation Scorecard (Rep.). Ottawa, ON.

All publications on Arctic
Selected Events for Arctic

Youth and Arctic

The Arctic Climate Change Emerging Leaders Fellowship (ACCEL), Barents Regional Youth Council, Emerging Leaders in Environmental and Energy Policy Network (ELEEP), Reykjavik University, and Youth Arctic Coalition convened a workshop as well as a question and answer... Read more

Discussion:Youth in the Arctic: A Discussion Connecting the Leaders of Tomorrow and Today

Reykjavik, Iceland

Climate and Arctic

| Fotolia_© Goinyk Volodymyr
100 days after the successful negotiation of a global climate agreement in Paris, the Arctic is facing some of the warmest winter temperatures on record. As communities face threats to personal safety, livelihood, and culture, one pressing question remains: what effect... Read more

Digital Event:100 Days In: COP21 and the Arctic's Future – An Era of Energy Transition

Berlin, Germany
All events on Arctic
Selected Presentations for Arctic
Katherine Weingartner, Elizabeth Tedsen und Arne Riedel präsentieren den Gap Analysis Report.
On 11 September 2014, nineteen top Arctic institutes in Europe proposed the establishment of an EU Arctic Information Centre as a network undertaking in the final seminar of the project "EU in the Arctic, The Arctic in the EU" in Brussels, Belgium. Arne Riedel presented... Read more

Speech:EU in the Arctic, the Arctic in the EU - Gap Analysis Report

Brussels, Belgium
All presentations on Arctic