15th Polar Law Symposium 2022: Draft Program

Updated 4 October 2022 

 Wednesday, Oct. 12th

LOCATION: The Ceremonial Hall,  University of Iceland 

9:00 - 9:05: Welcome remarks
Dr. Jón Atli Benediktsson, Rector of the University of Iceland

9:05 - 9:20 Opening remarks
H.E. Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, President of Iceland 1996-2016

9:20 - 9:45  Keynote  
Dr. Bjarni Már Magnússon, Professor, Bifröst University

09:45 - 11:10 - The Ukrainian Crisis: Its Fallout and Effects in the Polar Regions 

Ms. Ragnheiður E. Þorsteinsdóttir, Assistant Professor, University of  Akureyri and Ph.D. candidate at the University of Iceland, Faculty of Law

Prof. Akiho Shibata, Professor and Director, Polar Cooperation Research Centre (PCRC), Kobe University, Japan & Dr. Zia Madani, JSPS Postdoctoral Fellow, Kobe University, Japan, Invasion of Ukraine and the Antarctic Treaty System: Legal challenges for its continuing resilience

Dr. Christoph Humrich, Centre for International Relations Research, University of Groningen, In View of the War in Ukraine: A Kantian, not Realist strategy for the Arctic

Dr. Barry Zellen, Visiting Scholar, University of Connecticut, As War in Ukraine Upends a Quarter Century of Enduring Arctic Cooperation, the World Needs the Arctic Council Now More Than Ever

Mr. Andrew Simon-Butler, P.h.D. student, University of British Columbia, Svalbard and a Century of (De)Militarization Creep, 

Dr. Kentaro Nishimoto, Professor of International Law, NIPR and Tohoku University, Japan ,  What Could the War in Ukraine mean for Navigation of the Northern Sea Route? An East Asian Perspective

11:10-11:15 BREAK 

11:15- 12:25 - The Interlink Between Security and Governance Within the Arctic

Dr. Lassi Heininen, Professor, Emeritus, University of Lapland, Traditional security vis-a-vis comprehensive security, the Arctic case

Ms. Sakiko Hataya, Research Fellow at the Ocean Policy Research Institute of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation & Dr. Xiang Gao, Ocean Policy Research Institute of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation,  Future of Japan-China Cooperation in Arctic Affairs

Dr. Kaisa Huhta, Senior Researcher, and Postdoctoral  Fellow, Academy of Finland, Centre  for  Climate  Change,  Energy  and  Environmental  Law, EU’s legal policy and approaches to Security for Arctic Energy

Mr. Alberto Baldini, BA student, University of Pisa & Ms. Elisabetta Ginevra Iida, BA student, University of Pisa,  Is a Stable Arctic Legal Framework Possible?  

12:25- 13:25 - A just transition for the Arctic:  Defining justice and the role of the law  in  guiding changes for a sustainable and inclusive Arctic 

Prof. Rachael Lorna Johnstone, Professor, University of Akureyri and University of Greenland 


Dr. Dorothée Cambou, Assistant Professor of Sustainability Science, University of Helsinki, Finland, Just Wind Power: The Fosen Supreme Court decision and its importance for the green transition

 Dr. Daria Shapolova, Professor, Senior Lecturer in Energy Law and Co-Director, Aberdeen University of Energy Law, Just Transition in Oil and Gas Hubs: Place-Based Approaches to Decarbonisation Governance

Prof. Mark CJ Stoddart, Department of Sociology, Memorial University, Canada, Hydroelectricity and Just Climate Transitions: Muskrat Falls, Downstream Communities, and the Politics of Anti-Reflexivity

13:25 - 14:25 Lunch break 

14:25 - 15:25 - Human and Environmental Rights in the Arctic/ Human Rights Aspects in Arctic Foreign and Domestic Affairs  
Hrafnhildir Bragadóttir, Ph.D. candidate at the University of Iceland, Faculty of Law

Professor of Public International Law, Queen Mary, University of London, International Whaling Commission, Indigenous Whaling and Indigenous Identity, Dr. Malgosia Fitzmaurice

Ms. Sara Fusco, Ph.D. candidate at the University of Lapland, Faculty of Law, in Environmental Law and Indigenous Rights, How climate change influences the Indigenous identity in the small islands of the Arctic: The establishment of customary law in the modern Indigenous tradition

Ms. Federica Scarpa, Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network, Has the integration of Greenland to the Kingdom of Denmark been rightfully implemented?

15:25-16:25 - Perspectives on Indigenous Peoples’ Rights
Ms. Federica Scarpa, Communications Manager, Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network

Dr. Øyvind Ravna, Professor of Law, UiT Arctic University of Norway in Tromsø , The Property history of Arctic Scandinavia (or Sápmi) - a fake story? 

Prof. Rachael Johnstone, Professor, University of Akureyri and University of Greenland; Inge Seiding, Associate Professor, University of Greenland, Decolonising Arctic Archives: a Research Agenda

Mr. Pavel Tkach, Junior Researcher, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Benefits and Challenges of the Intellectual Property law for traditional cultural expressions of Indigenous Communities of the North

Dr. Grant Christensen, Assistant Professor of Law, Stetson University, Expanded Jurisdiction of Native Alaskan Communities under VAWA 2022,

16:25-17:10 - The Interplay of Law and Science for balancing use and protection 
Dr. Hafdís Hanna Ægisdóttir, Director of the Institute for Sustainability Studies, University of Iceland


Dr. Hilde Woker, Professor, Faculty of Law of the Universidad de Chile, The Concept of Best Available Science in Polar Law, 

Dr. Maria Madalena das Neves, Associate Professor, Norwegian Centre for the Law of  the  Sea  (UNCLOS),  The  Arctic  University  of  Norway, Seabed  mining  on  the  northern  areas  of  the  Norwegian  continental  shelf: reconciling economic development with effective protection of the marine environment

Dr. Anna Maria Hubert , Legal and Policy Considerations for Enhancing the Benefits of Arctic Science: A Transdisciplinary Study of Wildlife Genomics

17:10 - 17:20 BREAK 

17:20-18:20 - A Changing Antarctica? Analyses of Recent Legal Innovations
Ms. Margrét Cela, Administrative Officer at Faculty of Law, University of Iceland

Mrs. Melis Yuksel, PhD student in Public Law, Hacettepe University , The territorial regimes in International Law and Unique Regime Brought by the Antarctic Treaty System

Dr. Luis Ferrada, Professor of International Law at the Faculty of Law of the Universidad de Chile,  Sovereignty on Antarctica and other possible legal-territorial categories for governance of the Sixth Continent: A conceptual framework

Dr. Xueping Li, Institute of International Law, School of Law, Wuhan University, From Peaceful Use to Rational Use: An Inquiry into the Evolutionary Trend of the Antarctic Treaty System

Ms. Elena-Laura Álvarez Ortega, Ph.D. Candidate, Tilburg University & Ms. Yousra Makanse, Ph.D. Candidate, Wageningen University & Research, Governance of Antarctic Tourism: The Role of ATS Principles and Values 

Thursday, Oct. 13th

LOCATION: The Ceremonial hall - University of Iceland

9:00-  9:35  Keynote 

 H.E. Vivian Motzfeldt, Greenland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Industry and Trade
Introduced by Prof. Timo Koivurova, Research Professor and the Director of the Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Finland, and Federica Scarpa, Communications Manager, Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network

09:35 - 09:50 - Potential legal means to regulate underwater noise in the Arctic

Mr. Hiroto Kogo, LL.M. candidate, Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies (GSICS), Kobe University, Japan  with  Prof. Akiho Shibata, Professor and Director, Polar Cooperation Research Centre (PCRC), Kobe University, Japan, Potential legal means to regulate underwater noise in the Arctic

9:50-10:05 - Interim Conservation and Management Measures under CAO Fisheries Agreement:  Its origin, concept, and functions

Mr. Taichi Inai, Ms. Rena Takezoe & Mr. Yoshiki Yamakawa, LL.M. candidates, Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies (GSICS), Kobe University, Japan, with  Prof. Akiho Shibata, Professor and Director, Polar Cooperation Research Centre (PCRC), Kobe University, Japan, Interim Conservation and Management Measures under CAO Fisheries Agreement:  Its origin, concept, and functions

10:05-10:15 Break 

10:15-11:10 - Environmental Law Within the Arctic: Lessons to be Learned and Challenges to Overcome
Dr. Aðalheiður Jóhannsdóttir, Professor, University of Iceland

Ms. Katharina Heinrich, Junior Researcher at the Arctic Governance Research Group at the Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Perspectives on dynamic marine management in ABNJ, its integration in the legal framework, and the role of the Polar Regions

Dr. Ilker K. Basaran, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Texas A&M University Galveston, and Dr. Elizabeth Nyman, Associate Professor of Political Science, Texas A&M University at Galveston, How to Address Regulatory Gap in Transboundary Oil Pollution from Offshore Installations in the Arctic Ocean 

Mr. Alberto Baldini, BA student, University of Pisa, States’ Obligations In a Territorializing Arctic: Coastal State Obligations in their EEZ between Due Regard and Environmental Law

Dr. Sanna Kopra,  Senior Researcher, Northern Institute for Environmental and Minority Law, University of Lapland, Finland,  The Arctic Ocean: the last frontier of Capitalocene or a cherished rights holder in Planetocene

11:10-12:05 - Security and Governance Issues in the Arctic: Fresh Conflicts and New Opportunities

Dr. Edyth Weeks, Adjunct Faculty, Washington University, International Relations to Look into the Future: An Assessment of the Pre-Colonization Phase of Polar Law Politics

Mr. Cornell Overfield, Associate Research Analyst, Center for Naval Analyses, Before and After Article 234: Balancing Management and Free Navigation

Dr. Fiametta Borgia, Associate Professor of International Law, University of Rome, Applying Articles 122 and 123 of UNCLOS to the Arctic Region: Opportunities and Challenges

12:05-13:00 Lunch

13:00 - 14:00 - 10 years of current developments in Arctic Law: Arctic Law is an academic discipline

Prof. Kamrul Hossain, Professor, University of Lapland, Arctic Law is an Academic Discipline

Prof. Gudmundur Alfredsson, Senior Associate at Stefansson Arctic Institute, Understanding the content of Arctic/Polar Law

Prof. Timo Koivurova, Research Professor and the Director of the Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Finland, Future of Arctic law and governance after the Russian invasion of Ukraine

Prof. Rachael Johnstone, Professor, University of Akureyri , Professor, University of Greenland, Global Polar Law? 

14:00-15:00 -  Ethical considerations for the protection of Antarctica 

Dr. Antje Neumann, Associate Professor of Law at the Faculty of Law, University of Akureyri, Towards a comprehensive protection of Antarctica’s intrinsic values

 Mrs. Asma Ebrahim, CFO, and forms part of Executive Teams for large global corporates, Antarctica is Open for Business’ - A Commercial Toolkit to Regulate Antarctica’s Code of Ethics

​​Ms. Jordane Liebeaux, MA student in Polar Law, University of Akureyri, The “no-go” alternative: An eco-centric approach for Antarctica  

Dr. Ricardo Roura, Independent scholar & Senior Adviser, Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition (ASOC), From World Park Antarctica to the rights of nature: Environmental perspectives on Antarctic governance

15:00 - 15:10 BREAK 

15:10-15:40 - Hyperborean Legalities: Critical Approaches to Polar Law

Mr. Romain Chuffart, Durham ARCTIC PhD Candidate, Durham Law School, Durham University 

Ms. Mana Tugend, PhD Research Fellow, Norwegian Centre for the Law of the Sea, UiT

15:40 - 16:50 - International Law, Ukraine, and the Arctic:  Is Operational Co-existence Possible?


Dr. Betsy Baker, Global Fellow, Wilson Center Polar Institute, USA 


Mr. Evan Bloom,  Senior Fellow and Former Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Fisheries and Director for Ocean and Polar Affairs, U.S. Department of State, The Arctic Ocean, diplomacy, and international law: A7, A8, and non-Arctic state interests after Ukraine 

Dr. Suzanne Lalonde, Professor of International Law, Université de Montréal, Canada, International Law, Boundaries, and Marine Conservation after Ukraine

Dr. Timo Koivurova, Research Professor and the Director of the Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Finland , The Arctic Council and Arctic Law after Ukraine

Mr. Peter Wilhelm Lund Linde, Fulbright Arctic Scholar, Arctic Cooperation or Co-existence after Ukraine

16:50-17:00 - Closing remarks by the Faroese Representative and transition to the 16th Polar Law Symposium

Dr. Mikael Marlies Karlsson, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, University of Iceland 


The 15th Polar Law Symposium will be held at the Ceremonial hall (Hátíðarsalur) at the University of Iceland in Reykjavík on October 12 and 13, 2022. The Polar Law Institute, the Icelandic Arctic cooperation network, and the Centre for Arctic Studies at the University of Iceland will co-host the Symposium in partnership with the Arctic Circle. 

The Polar Law Symposium aims to foster a critical debate on the crucial issues that are now facing and/or deriving from the polar areas. 


An advisory committee is composed of Gudmundur Alfredsson (Stefansson Arctic Institute), Pia Hansson (University of Iceland), Julia Jabour (University of Tasmania), Timo Koivurova (University of Lapland) Akiho Shihata (University of Kobe), and Embla Eir Oddsdottir (Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network). Jonathan Wood, Symposium Manager and PhD fellow at the University of Iceland will be heading a planning committee with the members currently consisting of Federica Scarpa, (Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network – IACN) and Ríkey Þöll Jóhannsdóttir  (Centre for Arctic Studies).

Polar law is a field of law that deals with the international, domestic, sub-national legal regimes that are applicable to the Arctic or the Antarctic, or both. The concept also includes aspects of governance and management, geopolitics, security, and social issues. For a more detailed understanding, please refer to the Yearbook of Polar Law, the Polar Law Textbooks I and II, and browse previous topics addressed in the Polar Law Symposia on the PLS website


Please note: Registration is free, yet mandatory.  

To register please send an email to Jonathan Wood (by 10 October 2022) indicating: 

  • Your name and surname
  • Affiliation 
  • Which dates are you planning to attend