‘Our Arctic’: Achievements, Opportunities, and Challenges in the Canadian North

Organized by: University of Toronto 5. September 2017

Beginning in the 1970s, Northern Canadian communities have entered into negotiations with the federal government to resolve their land claims. Since that time, many of those land claims have been settled and Canada’s northern communities – many of which are indigenous – have made great strides in achieving self-governance. 

Those who live in Canada’s north strive to define and govern their regions within the political and economic challenges of Canadian Confederation. Beyond Canada, at the Arctic regional level, and into the sphere of the global economy Canada’s northern territories, private sector, and aboriginal corporations have become regional and global actors and are increasingly finding and continuing to seek a greater voice and political influence in their own regions and on pan-arctic issues. The successes of Canada’s North, however, is dependent on overcoming the challenges at the local and national level to build the necessary critical infrastructure for the benefit of northerners and Canada. Many of the ongoing challenges will require cooperation across the Canadian North, as well with their national government and partners throughout the North American and Nordic Arctic states and those global partners with an active and invested interest in the Arctic. This session will showcase some of the achievements and opportunities for Canada’s North as well as present the region’s ongoing challenges.


  • The Honourable Bob McLeod, Premier of the Northwest Territories
  • Madeleine Redfern, Mayor of Iqaluit, Nunavut
  • Clint Davis, Chairman at NGC Nunatsiavut Inc.; Inuit Capital Strategy Trust; and Partner and Managing Director of Acasta Capital Indigenous
  • David Ramsay, former Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment, Northwest Territories; CEO of Arctic Mineral Resources; and Director, Fortune Minerals


  • Jessica Shadian, Distinguished Senior Fellow, Bill Graham Centre for Contemporary International History, U. of Toronto