The Northern Forum: Region-to-Region Cooperation Northern Frum: Reg


General information
Programmes and projects
Northern Forum Academy
NF Project: Product development and processing in sustainable reindeer husbandry
NF Project: Sustainable Model of Arctic Regional Tourism (SMART)
NF Project: International Women Circumpolar Expedition



Membership includes:
1. Northern subnational (regional) governments and governmental units.
2. Partners (business, other NGOs, associations, etc.)

Programs and projects
The Northern Forum’s cooperative projects, international meetings, and other operations focus upon four programmes:

The Northern Forum coordinates projects that are sponsored and implemented by groups of regional members. The Forum also endorses a variety of other activities.


Sustainable Economic Development:

Society and Culture:

Governance and Emergency:

The Northern Forum’s status as a United Nations Non-Governmental Organization allows the Forum’s members to participate in certain functions of the UN. As an Observer of the Arctic Council, the Northern Forum seeks cooperation on projects and brings local and regional concerns to the Council’s attention.

Other organizations with whom the Northern Forum cooperate are:

The Northern Forum is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization registered in the State of Alaska (U.S.A.). Its basic sources of funding are membership dues and grants from members. Additional financing for projects and operations is sought from a variety of institutions and partners.

What is the Northern Forum?
The Northern Forum is a non-profit international organization composed of thirty-nine members representing twenty-eight subnational or regional governments from eleven northern countries.

Northern Regions share unique characteristics that present unusual challenges, including:

Contact us

The Northern Forum Office of the Secretariat
716 W 4th Avenue, Suite 100
Anchorage, Alaska 99501, USA
telephone: +1 907 561 3280
fax: +1 907 561 6645

North European Associate Secretariat
Provincial Government of Lapland
FIN-96101 Rovaniemi
P.O.B. 8002, Baltakatu 2
Lapland, Suomi-Finland
telephone: +358 2051 77660
fax: +358 2051 77758

Western Russia Associate Secretariat
City of St. Petersburg
International Relations Department
Borovaya 26-28
191024 St. Petersburg, Russia
telephone: +7 812 311 9055
fax: +7 812 315 3647

Eastern Russia Associate Secretariat
Prospekt Lenina 30
677011 Yakutsk
Sakha Republic (Yakutiya), Russia
telephone: +7 4112 420 013
fax: +7 4112 244 046

Regional Members

1. City of Akureyri
2. Northern Norway (4 county governments)
3. Norrbotten County
4. Västerbotten County
5. Province of Lapland
6. Province of Oulu
Russian Federation
7. City of St. Petersburg
8. Arkhangelsk Oblast
9. Vologda Oblast
10. Nenets AO
11. Komi Republic
12. Khanty-Mansiysk AO
13 Yamalo-Nenets AO
14. Evenk AO
15. Krasnoyarsk Kray
16. Sakha Republic (Yakutiya)
17. Magadan Oblast
18. Kamchatka Oblast
19. Sakhalin Oblast
20. Chukotka AO
21. Dornod Aimag
People’s Republic of China
22. Heilongjiang Province
Republic of Korea
23. Republic of Korea
24. Hokkaido Prefecture
United States of America
25. State of Alaska
26. Yukon Territory
27. Northwest Territories
28. Province of Alberta



Projects focused on the improvement and conservation of the environment and associated issues in the North

Brown Bear Management
The Brown Bear Management project focuses on improving bear management in Northern regions and minimizing negative bear-human interaction. Under this project, a 4th workshop was held in August 2002 in Alaska, bringing together brown bear specialists from Chukotka, Hokkaido, Kamchatka, Koryak, Sakhalin and the Sakha Republic. Together with their Alaskan counterparts, they discussed best practices for managing bear populations while developing ecotourism, and how to avoid confrontations between bears and humans. The workshop included field visits to Kodiak Island and Katmai National Park to see first-hand how Alaskans promote bear viewing without disturbing the bears and other wildlife. The participants in the workshop issued a series of recommendations for increased interregional cooperation and harmonization of research and management in the North.

Aerial Bird Survey
U.S. Fish & Wildlife specialists worked together with their Russian Far East counterparts to conduct aerial surveys of waterbird populations in Chukotka and Sakha with the help of the Northern Forum Academy (see Northern Forum Academy).

Youth Environmental Education in the North
Promotes young peoples’ awareness about Northern environmental issues by holding a “Youth Eco-Forum” and preparing an “Eco-Handbook” in Chinese, English, Japanese and Russian for use in classrooms throughout the North. The first Youth Eco-Forum was conducted in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada December 2-5, 2001 and resulted in an Environmental Declaration. A second Youth Eco-Forum is planned in Hokkaido in 2004. Preparations and securing financial sponsorships are under way.

Youth Northern Forum Summer Camp
The regional youth ecological camp “Vostok” is conducted every summer in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutiya) with the purpose of developing international cooperation of the young people and support youth initiatives in the filed of developing international tourism, international political, cultural and scientific exchanges, and support of the activities of youth organizations.

Society and Culture
Projects focused on social issues affecting Northern peoples, such as healthy lifestyles, gender equality and investigating societal and human development issues

Healthy Lifestyles in the North
This project supports health lifestyles by promoting sobriety and a drug-free population. It was started in December 2001 in the city of Cherskiy in the Republic of Sakha, where the “Kolyma Proclamation” was adopted as a first step towards healthy lifestyles. Representatives of the Sakha Republic attended the June 2002 Rural Cap conference in Kotzebue, Alaska, dedicated to sobriety and drug abuse problems. A summit on “Alcohol and Drug Abuse Summit on Sobriety and Healthy Lifestyles in the North” is scheduled for June 26-29, 2003 in the Republic of Sakha. The summit’s focus is on developing sustainable partnerships between governments, groups and individuals working toward sobriety in the North. These interregional partnerships will have the task of adopting existing programs to better respond to the needs and traditions of small communities in the North.

Governance and Emergency
Cooperative work of Northern subnational governments in addressing common challenges of equitable governance and cooperation in emergency response

Severe Cold Climate Emergency Response
A workshop was organized in cooperation with the Center for Excellence for Disaster Response/Humanitarian Assistance (DR/HA) and focused on the execution and management of disaster responses. The participants provided actual case studies on oil spills and floods and developed recommendations concerning future international and interregional cooperation, as well as a list of basic emergency equipment response teams need to take along in severe cold climate conditions. The recommendations from the workshop are under consideration by the Arctic Council’s EPPR Committee for cooperation with the Northern Forum to develop integrated responses and to catalogue best practices.

Arctic Council EPPR (Emergency, Preparedness, Prevention and Response)
The EPPR Committee wishes to work with the Northern Forum to implement response models at the local level in the Northern regions and disseminate more widely information regarding prevention and response to disasters. A first step will be to assess the feasibility and costs of translating the First Response Manual for oil spills developed in Canada into more native and local languages (it already exists in English, Russian and Inuktitut). These efforts are ongoing.

Sustainable Development
Projects focused on the improvement of the quality of lives of Northern peoples and support of sustainable economic activities and traditional rural activities

Sustainable Model for Arctic Region Tourism (SMART)
This project provides an opportunity to increase awareness of northern environmental issues and support conservation, within a framework of sustainable economic tourism activity. SMART will assist the arctic tourism sector to adopt economically, environmentally and culturally sustainable tourism practices. The project’s goal is to create resources, tools, and incentives that can be used directly by tourism SMEs or local players in rural/tourism development as well as professional training to assist the tourism sector in their respective area.

Circumpolar Infrastructure
This project involves a series of focused work groups on a variety of infrastructure issues in the North, including aviation and telecommunications. Specific achievements last year included a Transpolar Aviation workshop, organized in March 2002, which focused on the development of transpolar and circumpolar aviation routes and has led to several initiatives, including an initiative by the Institute of the North to seek direct postal service between the two sides of the Pacific.

Aviation Routes and Infrastructure
International air routes are negotiated by national governments at the federal level. Thus, this project seeks to facilitate the establishment of international air routes that service Northern regions. More generally, it was also generated to enhance cooperation among Northern regions on aviation issues. Examples of routes promoted by this project include flights between Alaska and the Russian Far East Region and Alaska and the Yukon Territory and Alberta. This project involves the contribution of the Northern Forum to the Russian Far East/U.S. West Coast AdHoc meeting’s aviation committee to discuss these issues and try to find solutions.

Reindeer Herding Management
This joint Arctic Council – Northern Forum project is transferring Nordic reindeer processing and management techniques to Northern Russian regions, emphasizing the preservation of indigenous cultures and economies. It provides and supports sustainable rural economies in the North.

Technologies for the North
The introduction of new technologies in various aspects of traditional economies without destroying their close link to nature is the focus of this project. It involves collecting information about new technologies applicable to the North and attracting companies producing Northern-oriented products. In order to familiarize the inhabitants of Northern regions with the latest achievements in technology to improve living standards, the project involves the publication of materials, creation of a video and the organization of an international seminar and a portable exhibit.



The Northern Forum Academy is headquartered in Yakutsk in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutiya), Russia. Its purpose encompasses numerous activities linked to academic and scientific pursuits in support of NF goals and objectives.

1. Conferences and meetings

2. Research conducted upon request of the Northern Forum

3. Cooperation with international and national organizations, and in particular with the Arctic Council programmes:

Arctic Council Action Plan (ACAP) Environmental Summit focused on the primary ACAP projects. The Summit would be conducted in late 2002 or early 2003 to educate local government and business leaders with the ACAP process and encourage them to provide input into the process. Additionally, specific issues associated with the ACAP remediation projects would be addressed in smaller workshops during the Summit. The NFA will also assist in the development of a network of environmental contacts at the regional and industry level.

Arctic Human Development Report (AHDR) is to be presented at the fall 2004 ministerial meeting of the Arctic Council. The bulk of the AHDR can be synthesized from already existing research results. Social scientists and others will provide reliable materials for the report, which will also include contributions from the people of the region with regard to their everyday circumstances and thoughts. The AHDR will draw on experience gained in the conduct of similar projects. The United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Human Development Report (UNHDR) provides a valuable conceptual approach concerning human development and well being.


Product development and processing in sustainable reindeer husbandry

1. Project co-ordination and contact information
The main organizer of the project is the Educational Center of Saami Area, Lapland, Finland.
Contact information: Principal Lassi Valkeapää, PL 50, FIN-99870 Inari, Telephone: +358-(0)16-671231, fax: +358-(0)16-671426,

2. Project initiation

Finland took the initiative to Sustainable Development Working Group’s meeting held on the 14th of May, 2002. It approved the initiative to be presented to Senior Arctic Officials (SAO) that approved the initiative on the 16th of May, 2002 to be presented to Inari Ministerial meeting in October 2002.

3. Description of the project
The project puts into effect a part of the program for the Finnish Chair of the Arctic Council 2000-2002. The part in question reads: “Finland contributes to the development of basic industries in the Arctic by strengthening inter alia, sustainable reindeer management, related product development and processing as well as training in this field.”
“Product Development and Processing in Sustainable Reindeer Husbandry 2002-2005” project is a co-operative project of the Arctic Council and the Northern Forum. This project carries on the Northern Forum project “Reindeer Management” which has carried out the same aims in several reindeer herding areas in Finland and Russia since 1997.
The project complements “Sustainable Reindeer Husbandry” project approved by the Arctic Council as a project under the Sustainable Development Programme.

The aims of the project
The main aim of the project is to preserve and develop reindeer husbandry. Other aims are:
- to develop and improve the reindeer husbandry of each region in such a manner that pastures are used in the most effective and ecologically sustained way to improve the social conditions of the indigenous peoples of the North.
- to ensure sustainable reindeer husbandry by related product development and further processing of reindeer products through utilizing especially education and research connected to it.
Geographical emphasis is on Russia but all countries where reindeer herding is practiced can participate in the project. The project supports the aims of the resolution No. 564 “Economic and Social Development of the Small Indigenous Peoples of the North up to the Year 2011”, Federal Target Program, approved by the Government of the Russian Federation on the 27th of June in 2001, as well as program of action approved by the Reindeer Herders’ Union of Russia in Salekhard on the 12th of March in 2002.

Sections of the project
1. Training in self-supervising of slaughterhouses
2. Slaughtering and meat handling of reindeer
3. Uniform education in reindeer husbandry for the whole reindeer herding area
4. Tourism as a supplementary industry in reindeer husbandry
5. By-products of reindeer
6. Training in marketing and business management
7. Development seminars, excursions and negotiation trips

Expected results
With the help of this project, the living conditions of the peoples of the North improve and the respect to the reindeer as genuine natural product increases in the whole reindeer herding area. More jobs are created amidst further processing as well as amongst other secondary occupations connected with reindeer. The reindeer industry remains vital and the northern culture connected to it remains respected and a way of life worth pursuing. In the long term, the further processing of reindeer meat and the other related product development will meet approximately the same standards all over the reindeer herding area.

4. Organizers of the work
Finland is the leading partner of the project. The main organization responsible is the Educational Center of Saami Area. The Finnish Game and Fisheries Research Institute’s Reindeer Research Unit in Kaamanen supports the project in the research part. The specialist organizations and the interest groups in Finland are among others the Reindeer Herders’ Association in Finland and the Saami Reindeer Herders’ Association in Finland. The State Provincial Office of Lapland functions as the contact organization to the Northern Forum.
In Russia, the Reindeer Herders’ Union of Russia (RHUR) is the project coordinator. The regional administrations in the reindeer herding area have a central part in the project. Several educational institutions that provide teaching in reindeer husbandry are involved in the realization of the project. The project functions in close co-operation with the Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North (RAIPON).
In Sweden, the main co-operating partners are the County Administration of Norrbotten and the National Union of Saami People in Sweden. In the USA, the practical co-operating partner is the Kawerak Reindeer Herders’ Association in Alaska. The coordinator is the State of Alaska. In Norway, a handicraft association Sámi Duodji and the reindeer husbandry school in Kautokeino Sámi joatkkaskuvla ja boazodoalloskuvla participate in the co-operation.
The Association of World Reindeer Herders (WRH) is a central co-operating partner in the project. Other countries as well as organizations and companies are also welcome to participate. An international Project Committee will be established for the project.


Sustainable Model of Arctic Regional Tourism (SMART)

The “Sustainable Model for Arctic Regional Tourism” (SMART) is an official project of the Arctic Council and the Northern Forum. It was initiated under the lead of the USA (Alaska), Finland and Norway and has now expanded to an arctic–wide project encompassing eight countries of the North. In addition, several other non-governmental organizations and institutions have been involved in the process and contributed to the development of the program. The program aims to assist the arctic tourism sector to adopt economically, environmentally and culturally sustainable tourism practices through resources, tools, professional training and marketing or economic incentives that can be used directly by small- and medium-sized tourism enterprises (SMEs) and other players in local rural tourism development. SMART tries to be as inclusive as possible and recognises the different stages of tourism development throughout the individual participating countries. It is also recognized that the concept of sustainability, particularly with regard to industries like tourism, is widely debated and still needs further research.

To empower the tourism sector in the arctic to continually innovate more sustainable tourism practices.

Assist the arctic tourism sector to adopt economically, environmentally and culturally sustainable tourism practices.

Main objectives

The development process of SMART so far has involved consultation with regional indigenous-population associations such as the ICC and will continue to seek counsel and participation of these groups in the further process to ensure that the aims and results of SMART take into account the specific situations of indigenous inhabitants in the project area and contribute to their well-being. Working with local and indigenous small businesses and communities will mainly take place via the pilot groups of enterprises in every country. Also, the results of the project will be disseminated in a way that will benefit local and indigenous groups that initially choose not to get involved in the project.

The overall project outputs will be distributed through various channels. One of them is the affiliation with the Arctic Council and Northern Forum which will help to reach stakeholders and players in the regions concerned with sustainable tourism development. These development specialists are naturally working with local and indigenous small businesses and communities. It is these groups that are the main beneficiary of the project’s “products”.


International Women Circumpolar Expedition

Description of the organization
Our organization was created in 1999 on the basis of a public organization called “Auto-lady”. This year we have renamed it as “International Women Expedition Nonprofit Partnership” and registered it at the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutiya) with the purpose to promote the formation of a democratic society based on strengthening peace and friendship between nations, saving traditions, languages and cultures of peoples, environmental protection, and promoting a healthy life style.

From the beginning of civilization, women have been the perpetuators of the kin and the keepers of the hearth. Women support an atmosphere of love and harmony in the home, lead the children into the adult world, and lay the bases of further spiritual development. Women of the entire world, having united their efforts, should create an atmosphere of spirituality, the conscious relation to our planet.
The proposed project will provide complex interdisciplinary comparative studies of the spiritual and material culture of our nations’ ancestors and of the settled circumpolar area. The integration of knowledge will promote a spiritual unity and rapprochement of peoples living around the North Pole.
In connection with this project, there is also an opportunity for international travel companies to learn about ecological and ethnographic tourism in Siberia and the Russian Far East.
The question of survival for all mankind can be solved, by uniting the efforts of all countries. Looking towards the forthcoming global crisis, one needs to consider the issue of developing natural reserves over the immense territories of the Russian North, the Arctic regions, Siberia and the Far East, inaccessible today because of an obsolete infrastructure. Creating a new infrastructure relying on modern technologies while improving the living standards and providing employment in the Arctic regions requires building adequate transportation as well as investments of the part of the more advanced countries.

Purpose and goals of the project

a) The purposes are twofold:
- To attract the attention of the world to the ecological, economic, social problems of the Arctic regions and the North.
- To develop circumpolar routes for international tourism and investments in Siberia and the Russian Far East.

b) Goals:
- Completion of an international women circumpolar ground expedition;
- Research and hire of participants from northern regions;
- Coordination of the itinerary, number of participants and other logistical details;
- Attracting public organizations and firms in the circumpolar regions that might be interested in participating in the project for publicity, including maintenance and transportation of expedition;
- Meetings with mass media, regional and federal, with a "northern" focus;
- Publication of the expedition’s materials;
- Production of a videofilm about the expedition;
- Organization of press conferences and round tables along the itinerary of the expedition to publicize the ideas of the project.

Oksana Novgorodova: Expedition leader
Теl: + 7 (4112) 36-88-69, +7 (4112) 147-804 с, fax +7 (4112) 24-12-34,; or
Nikolai Nakhodkin: Executive Director of the Northern Forum Secretariat in Yakutsk
Теl: +7 (4112) 42-00-13, +7 (4112) 43-20-56 home, fax +7 (4112) 24-40-46,;
Anastasia Bozhedonova: Representative of the Sakha Republic, Northern Forum Secretariat
Теl: +1 (907) 561-3280, +1 (907) 770-1731 home, fax +1 (907) 561-6645,