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The Arctic Silk Road

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eLibrary: The Arctic Silk Road.

Version 3.0 (October 2020)


Nynke van der Heide and Richard T. Griffiths (Leiden University) 


This is the latest version of an electronic library of resources on the Arctic aspects of the BRI, also known as the northern sea-route. It is intended to offer support to teachers and students studying the BRI as part of their undergraduate education and to act as a springboard to individual projects. Any suggestions will be welcome, please add to the comments. 


Policy Documents


9/2018 Conference of Parliamentarians of the Arctic Region. Conference Statement

5/2019 Agreement to prevent unregulated high seas fisheries in the central Arctic Ocean


2010 Statement on Canada’s Arctic Foreign Policy. Exercising Sovereignty and Promoting Canada’s Northern Strategy

10/2016 Interim report on the Shared Arctic Leadership Model

08/2017 Arctic and Northern Policy Framework – Pan-Territorial Chapter

09/2019 Canada’s Arctic and Northern Policy Framework


01/2018 China’s Arctic Policy


NEW 12/2011 Strategy for the Arctic 2011–2020 


07/2017 Norway’s Arctic Strategy – between geopolitics and social development


2008 The European Union and the Arctic Region, Brussels, 20.11.2008 COM(2008) 763 final

2016 An integrated European Union policy for the Arctic, Brussels, 27.4.2016 JOIN(2016) 21 final

2017 International Cooperation on Arctic Matters

2019 Council Conclusions on EU Arctic Policy


NEW 1/2015 Growth from the North How can Norway, Sweden and Finland achieve sustainable growth in the Scandinavian Arctic?

NEW 9/2016 Government Policy Regarding the Priorities in the Updated Arctic Strategy


NEW 6/2016 The Great Challenge Of The Arctic National Roadmap For The Arctic


3/2009 Basics of the State Policy of the Russian Federation in the Arctic for the Period till 2020 and for a Further Perspective  

NEW 2012 Strategy on the Development of Russian Seaport Infrastructure Till 2030, 2012. 

9/2018 Распоряжение от 30 сентября 2018 года №2101-р. A comprehensive plan for the modernization and expansion of the main infrastructure for the period until 2024

12/2019 Распоряжение от 21 декабря 2019 года №3120-р The decisions taken for creating infrastructural conditions for the further development of the Northern Sea Route and coastal territories. Summary in Barents Observer, 31.12.2019.


NEW 2013 Department of Defence, Arctic Strategy

12/2019 Congressional Research Service, Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress, Updated December 2019. Preparation for an eventual government White Paper.

NEW 7/2020 Department of the Air Force Arctic Strategy 

NEW 9/2020 Congressional Research Service (2020) Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress, Updated September 2020



NEW Alvarez, J., Yumashev, D. and Whiteman, G. (2020) ‘A framework for assessing the economic impacts of Arctic change’, Ambio, 49, 407-418 

Bekkers E. et al (2015) Melting Ice Caps and the Economic Impact of Opening the Northern Sea Route, CPB Discussion Paper 207, The Hague

NEW Blackwell S.B. et al. (2015) ‘Effects of Airgun Sounds on Bowhead Whale Calling Rates: Evidence for Two Behavioral Thresholds’, PLoS ONE 10(6): e0125720. Online, 

Bogdanova, E. et al (2020) ‘The Export Potential of Innovative Bioresources of the Arctic in the Economic Zone of the Polar Silk Road’, Advances in Economics, Business and Management Research 131, 2020. 

NEW Mathieu Boulègue, M. (2019)  Russia’s Military Posture in the Arctic Managing Hard Power in a ‘Low Tension’ Environment, RIIA (July 2019)

Bowman, L and Qingchao X. (2020) China in the Arctic: Policies, Strategies, and Opportunities for Alaska. Fairbanks: Center for Arctic Policy Studies 

NEW Brady, A-M. (2019) ‘Facing Up to China’s Military Interests in the Arctic’  China Brief, 19, 21, (December 2019) 

NEW Buixadé Farré, et al., (2014) ‘Commercial Arctic shipping through the Northeast Passage: routes, resources, governance, technology, and infrastructure’, Polar Geography, 37:4, 298-324. Online, 

NEW CAFF (2017), State of the Arctic Marine Biodiversity Report, Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna International Secretariat, Akureyri, Iceland. Online, 

Conference of Parliamentarians of the Arctic Region (2018)  Important steps in the Arctic Parliamentary Cooperation 25 Years – 1993–2018, Oslo, 2018 (includes all conference statements to 2016)

Cornet, A. (2018) ‘From the “Polar Silk Road” to the Arctic Rimland: A Case Study of the Belt and Road Challenges for the European Union, Asia Focus, 90, October 2018

NEW Coulson, S.J.  (2015) ‘The alien terrestrial invertebrate fauna of the High Arctic archipelago of Svalbard: potential implications for the native flora and fauna’, Polar Research, 34:1, 27364. Online, 

NEW Crépin, A-S., Karcher, M and Gascard, J-C. (2017), ‘Arctic Climate Change, Economy and Society (ACCESS): Integrated perspectives’, Ambio, 46(3) 341-354.

Descamps, M. (2019) The Ice Silk Road: Is China a “Near-Arctic State”? Focus Asia, February 2019

Fedorov V.P et al. (2020) The Northern Sea Route: Problems and Prospects of Development of Transport Route in the Artic, IOP Conf. Ser.: Earth Environmental Science 434.

Gladkiy, Y.N et al. (2020) ‘”Polar Silk road”: project implementation and geo-economic interests of Russia and China’, IOP Conf. Ser.: Earth Environmental Science 434. 

NEW  Glomsrød, S. and Iulie Aslaksen, I (2008) The Economy of the North, Doc submitted toArctic Council

Godzimirski, J. (2020) ‘Russian Expert and Official Geopolitcal Narratives on the Arctic: Decoding Topical and Paradigmatic DNA’, Arctic Review on Law and Politics, 11, 22-46.  

NEW Gushchin, A. (2017) One Belt One Road Initiative and the Arctic, Lecture Slides

Havnes, H. (2020) ‘The Polar Silk Road and China’s Role in Arctic Governance’ Journal of Infrastructure, Policy and Development 4:1, 121-138.

Heurlin, B. (2019) ‘China-US Confrontations in the Arctic Region: Strategies and Policies’, Asian Studies International Journal 1:1, 8-15. 

NEW Heide-Jørgensen, M.D. et al., (2013) ‘Narwhals and seismic exploration: Is seismic noise increasing the risk of ice entrapments?’, Biological Conservation 158: 50-54. 

NEW Heininen L, Sergunin, A. and Yarovoy, G. (2014) Russian Strategies in the Arctic: Avoiding a New Cold War Moscow, September 2014 Cold War

Heininen, L et al. (2020) Report: Arctic Policies and Strategies – Analysis, Synthesis, and Trends International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, 2020.

NEW Hjort, J., et al. (2018) ‘Degrading permafrost puts Arctic infrastructure at risk by mid-century’, Nature Communications 9, 5147. 

NEW Hsiung, C.W. (2020) ‘The Emergence of a Sino-Russian Economic Partnership in the Arctic?’, The Arctic Institute, 19.5.2020 (article has links to eight further background studies)

Humpert, M. (2013) The Future of Arctic Shipping: A New Silk Road for China? Arctic Institute, Washington.

Humpert, M (2014) Arctic Shipping: An Analysis of the 2013 Northern Sea Route Season, Arctic Institute, Washington.

Ji, M.S. and Dong, J.K. (2020) ‘Multi criteria evaluation of beneficial effect of commercializing Northern Sea Route on Europe and Asia countries’, The Asian Journal of Shipping and Logistics April 2020.

Jüris, F. (2020) Handing over Infrastructure for China’s Strategic Objectives: ‘Arctic Connect’ and the Digital Silk Road in the Arctic, Sinopsis, Policy Brief, 7.3.2020

NEW Klimenko, E. (2019) The Geopolitics of a Changing Arctic, SIPRI Background paper

NEW Koivurova, T. et al (2019), China in the Arctic; and the Opportunities and Challenges for Chinese- Finnish Arctic Co-operation, Publications of the Government ́s analysis, assessment and research activities 8/2019, Finland’s Prime Minister’s Office. 


NEW Koh, S.L.C. (2020) “Frozen Pathways. China’s strategic interest in the Arctic goes beyond economics”, Defense News, 12.5.2020


Kopra, S. (2018) ‘Climate change and China’s rise to great power status: implications for the Global Arctic’. In Finger, M. and Heininen, L.  (Eds.), The Global Arctic Handbook 125-139.

Kossa, M. (2019)  ‘China’s Artcic Engagement: Domestic Actors and Foreign Policy’ Global Change, Peace & Security. 32:1, 19-38.

Kossa, M. Et al. (2020) ‘East Asian subnational government involvement in the Arctic: a case for paradiplomacy?’, The Pacific Review, 2020.

Kurbonshoeva, L. Et al. (2020) ‘Pipline shore crossing approaches in Arctic conditions’, Pipeline Science and Techonology, 4:1, 18-26.  

NEW Lanteigne, M. (2020) ‘The Twists and Turns of the Polar Silk Road’, Over the Circle, 15.3.2020.

NEW Lipponen, P. (2016) A Strategic Vision for the North Finland’s prospects for economic growth in the Arctic region preparation of Finlands Aectic Policy

Lim, K.S. (2018) China’s Arctic Policy & the Polar Silk Road Vision, Arctic Yearbook

NEW Logerwell, E., Skjoldal, H.R. (2019), Guidelines for Implementing an Ecosystem Approach to Management of Arctic Marine Ecosystems, PAME, Arctic Council. Online, 

NEW Maraii, K. (2019) ‘China’s Arctic policy: present and future’ The Polar Journal, 9, 1, 2019, 94-112.

NEW McIntyre, J. (2020) ‘The Arctic emerges as a geographic battleground’, The Washington Examiner, 14.5.2020

Mickiewicz, P. (2020) ‘ China and Russia on the Baltic Sea: between rivalry and cooperation’, International Relations and Diplomacy, 8:1 January 2020, 14-21. 

Monteiro, A. (2020) ‘Strategic Partnership, Arctic-Style: How Russia and China Play the Game’, Modern Diplomacy, 14.3.2020

Moscato, D. (2018) The Polar Silk Road in the Popular Press: Global Media Framing of China’s 2018 Arctic Policy White Paper, Arctic Yearbook

NEW National Research Council. 2015. Arctic Matters: The Global Connection to Changes in the Arctic. Washington, DC 

Olga, R. et al. (2019) ‘The Arctic of the Future: Retrospective And Perspective of Research and Development’ Advances in Economics, Business and Management Research, 131. 

NEW PAME (2019), Underwater Noise in the Arctic: A State of Knowledge Report, Roveniemi. Online, 

Parker, A. (2020) ‘Looking north: the re-emergence of the Arctic as a geopolitical hotspot’, Geopolitics, 2.3.2020.

NEW Parker, H. (2020) “CSR 2020: Two Paths to the Arctic: Analyzing Chinese and Japanese Advances’, The SAIS China Studies Review, May 2020

NEW Pazard, S, Tingstad, A. and Hall, A, (2018) The Future of Arctic Cooperation in a Changing Strategic Environment, RAND

Peng, J. and Wegge N. (2015) ‘China’s bilateral diplomacy in the Artic’, Polar Geography 38:3, 233-249. 

Pelaudeix, C. (2018) Along the Road. China in the Arctic, EUISS Brief, 13, 2018

Plataniotis, P. (2018?) An Assessment of the Future Competitiveness of Port of Piraeus. MA Thesis, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, 

Pincus, R. (2020) ‘Three-Way Power Dynamics in the Artic’, Strategic Studies Quarterly 14:1 (Spring 2020), 40-63. 

Ping, S. and Lanteigne, M. (2015) ‘China’s Developing Arctic Policies: Myths and Misconceptions’, Journal of China and International Relations 3:1, 2015.

NEW Polyak, L. e.a. (2010) ‘History of sea ice in the Arctic’, Quaternary Science Reviews, 29, 1757-1778.

NEW Renfrow, S. (2020) Arctic sea ice on the wane: Now what? NASA

NEW Shulze, V.G.  (2017) Arctic Strategies Round-up 2017

NEW Smieszek, M (2019), Informal International Regimes. A Case Study of the Arctic Council, Rovaniemi. 

Sun, Y. (2019?) The Northern Sea Route: The Myth of Sino-Russian Cooperation, Stimpson??

Teslya, A. and Gutman, S.  (2020) ‘Forming and Developing a Green Transport Corridor in the Arctic’ IOP Conf. Ser.: Earth Environment Science 434 012010. 

Tillman, H., Yang, J. and Nielsson, E.J. (2018) ‘The Polar Silk Road: China’s New Frontier of International Cooperation’, China Quarterly of International Strategic Studies, 2018, 4, 345-362

NEW Treinen, D. and Baev, P.K. (2010) The Arctic. A View from Moscow, Carnegei Endowment

NEW Vihtakari, M., Welcker, J., Moe, B. et al. (2018) ‘Black-legged kittiwakes as messengers of Atlantification in the Arctic’. Sci Rep 8, 1178. Online, 

Wang, D. Et al. (2020) ‘Development situation and future demand for the ports along the Northern Sea Route’ Research in Transportation Business and Management, March 2020. 

Woon, C.Y. (2020) ‘Framing the “Polar Silk Road” (冰上丝绸之路): Critical geopolitics, Chinese scholars and the (Re)Positionings of China’s Arctic interests’, Political Geography, April 2020, 78. 

NEW Zandzee, D., Kimberley, K. and Stoetman, A. (2020) The future of Arctic security The geopolitical pressure cooker and the consequences for the Netherlands, Clingendael Report (April 2020)

Zeng, Q. et al. (2020) ‘The competitiveness of Arctic shipping over Suez Canal and China-Europe railway’, Transport Policy 86 (February 2020)  34-43. 

NEW Zhang, C. (2020) ‘China’s Arctic Silk Road’, Maritime Executive, 10.1.2020