PCRC News


  • June 9, 2022

    Seven Arctic States announced a limited resumption of Arctic Council cooperation

    On 8 June 2022, the Seven Arctic States, except Russia, have announced a joint statement that they intend to implement a limited resumption of the Arctic Council work in projects that do not involve the participation of Russia. After announcing the pause in all Arctic Council work in their 3 March statement, this is the first stage of what they called “necessary modalities” to continue the work of the Council in light of the Russian aggression of Ukraine on 24 February. For the details with background information, please see Dr. Zia Madani’s analytical note.


  • June 1, 2022

    Prof. Alexander Sergunin talks on Arctic legal issues with international law and relations scholars: ArCS II seminar

    An online seminar by Prof. Alexander Sergunin from St. Petersburg State University in Russian Federation provided excellent opportunities to discuss recent Arctic legal issues, including extended continental shelf submission to the UN Commission and the Northern Sea Route (NSR). Prof. Sergunin is a JSPS invited fellow, visiting Kobe University from April to mid-June 2022. In his talk, Prof. Sergunin also touched upon the implications of the Ukraine crisis upon those issues. A lively discussion followed, as questions were raised by 13+ participants from both ArCS II international law and international relations research programs on Russian attitude towards the Arctic Council under its chairmanship, the effect of Russian “non-friendly nations” identification in relation to the use of NSR, etc. Participants recognized the importance of continuing researcher-level dialogue even during the war. The opportunity to interact frankly and academically with the Russian Arctic authority in the midst of the Ukrainian aggression was important.


  • June 1, 2022

    Kobe PCRC-JSPS fellowship for AY2023

    Kobe PCRC will host JSPS fellows for academic year 2023 (arrival in Japan between April 2023 and March 2024). The JSPS fellowship offers generous financial support for various level of scholars from Postdocs, Mid-career to Professor Level with different length of stay in Japan. This fellowship is great opportunity, especially for early career researchers wishing to stay at Kobe PCRC to conduct relatively long-term collaborative research. For details, please see the Invitation as well as the JSPS Application Guidelines. Please note the deadline of some recruitments, including the 1st recruitment of Postdoctoral Fellowship is July 1st.


  • May 27, 2022

    Under the Ukraine invasion, how can Arctic science diplomacy maintain Russia’s cooperation? Director Shibata argues in Nature

    In midst of Ukraine invasion, PCRC with Harvard University co-organized the webinar series on Arctic science diplomacy, with speakers from Arctic and non-Arctic states including Russia, in February and March 2022. While some participants withdrew, Director Shibata with close consultation with Paul Arthur Berkman and Jenny Baeseman maintained the webinars, noting that promotion of Arctic science through diplomacy is for ensuring the sustainability of all under the climate crisis. The co-authored correspondence article in Nature, Vol.604, argues: “Informed decision-making operates across a continuum of urgencies, short- to long-term, from pandemic to climate timescales” and even the war “for the sustainability of all” and “the importance of open science with both allies and adversaries for our shared survival” should be conveyed. A strong message from Director Shibata and his research group in Nature with its impact factor 49.962.


  • May 20, 2022

    PCRC research fellow Yermakova contributes to the Daily Maverick “Russian polar vessel arrives in Cape Town as pact aims to quell tensions”

    Yermakova provided her perspective to the conversations about potential spillover effects of the ongoing war in Ukraine onto Antarctic governance, specifically on the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM) which is scheduled for the upcoming week in Berlin. Daily Maverick article raises the question of whether Russia and Belarus should be banned from the ATCM in light of the events and how the Antarctic Treaty System (ATS) can and should respond to one of the signatory states invading another. While some scholars, such as Dr. Hemmings argued that Russia and Belarus should be prevented from attending or that the meeting should be cancelled this year to signal the Treaty parties' condemnation for Kremlin actions, other scholars, Yermakova included, urge to be careful with the boycott diplomacy. Yermakova suggests that international institutions such as the ATS should maintain their main function of coordination and communication. Especially at times such as current events, she argues, it is important to have a platform to develop a language of reason. Furthermore, Yermakova stresses the importance of considering the potential impact of boycott diplomacy, as this would create a likely scenario of isolated states engaging in illegal and unregulated activities in Antarctica.


  • May 19, 2022

    Special Seminar by Prof. Alexander Sergunin, a Russian expert on the Arctic, was held in-person with students actively engaging

    The GSICS special seminar / The 20th PCRC International Law Seminar by Prof. Alexander Sergunin (St. Petersburg University, International Relations) attracted 30 GSICS students as well as faculty members from international law and international relations. Prof. Sergunin explained comprehensively the difficulties as well as remaining possibilities for Arctic international cooperation in light of Ukraine crisis. During the discussion, a student reminded ourselves the need of frank but academic discussion in-person with Russian scholars particularly in these difficult times. Participating students posed penetrating questions such as the changes in word-order structure and its relation to the Arctic governance, the applicability of so-called “Arctic exceptionalism” in this case, the effects on Russian-China relations, and possibility of peaceful resolution of the Ukraine dispute. Prof. Sergunin responded honestly providing further insights for understanding the situation. The opportunity to interact academically with the Russian authority on the Arctic in the midst of the Ukrainian invasion was very much appreciated by all participants.


  • Last updated June 9, 2022

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