Baltic Sea Region as a part of (new) Northern Geopolitics and Security

A lecture Baltic Sea Region as a part of (new) Northern Geopolitics and Security will be held by dr. Lassi Heininen from University of Lapland in Finland on September 27, at 18.00 at the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia, Marijas Str. 13/3 (Berga bazars), Riga. In the early-21 century international, even global, attention in the Arctic region and toward its rich natural resources is increasing, and the region is stable and peaceful without armed conflicts. The latter one is also the case of the Baltic Sea region. Behind this is the fundamental shift from the confrontation of the Cold War to interregional and international cooperation across national borders in North Europe, which started in the late 1980s and was accelerated by modern region-building in the Arctic in the 1990s.

Here the Baltic Sea region was a forerunner of new kind of regional and trans-boundary cooperation across the former Iron Curtain, such as the EU’s Northern Dimension, and a model for region-building, such as the Barents Euro-Arctic Region. Now, when the Arctic region’s geo-strategic importance is growing, another significant and multifunctional change with globalization has occurred in the region. As a response to this new situation is that the Arctic states, as well as the European Union, have recently approved, and remapped, their national priorities and policy objectives in the Arctic region. Interestingly, though these strategies and policies much appreciate the stability and promote the existing international cooperation, they neither are much based on new kind of regional cooperation and region-building, nor take into consideration globalization and its challenges. The main aim of this presentation is on one hand, to describe the recent significant changes in Northern geopolitics and security, and on the other hand, to discuss on the Baltic Sea region as a part of this, and evaluate its role in the first significant geopolitical change in North Europe and the Arctic region.