Book - University of Calgary Press

Polar Cousins: Comparing Antarctic and Arctic Geostrategic Futures

| December 2022

A timely exploration of rapidly evolving geopolitical, social, and environmental challenges for national and international security strategy across the Arctic and Antarctic polar regions.

"Polar Cousins cover"Geopolitics and climate change now have immediate consequences for national and international security interests across the Arctic and Antarctic. The world’s polar regions are contested and strategically central to geopolitical rivalry. At the same time, rapid political, social, and environmental change presents unprecedented challenges for governance, environmental protection, and maritime operations in the regions.

With chapters that raise awareness, address challenges, and inform policy options, Polar Cousins reviews the state of strategic thinking and options on Antarctica and the Southern Oceans in light of experience in the circumpolar North. Prioritizing strategic issues, it provides an essential discussion of geostrategic thinking, strategic policy, and strategy development.

Featuring contributions from international defence experts, scientists, academics, policymakers, and decisionmakers, Polar Cousins offers key insights into the challenges unique to the polar regions.

With contributions by: Brenda Dunkle, Roger Bradbury, Joe Burton, Douglas Causey, Lassi Heininen, Randy “Church” Kee, Ilan Kelman, Timo Koivurova, Peter Layton, Christian Leuprecht, Dwayne Ryan Menzes, Heather Nicol, AJ (Tony) Press, Joanna Vince, and Robin Warner

Praise for Polar Cousins

"The geopolitics of the polar regions are rapidly evolving, and this book provides critical insights and a contextual foundation into the similarities and differences of the Northern and Southern Polar regions, as well as their connections to, and impacts on the rest of the world." —Mike Sfraga, Chair, United States Arctic Research Commission; Founding Director, Chair, and Distinguished Fellow, Polar Institute, Wilson Center 

"Polar regions are increasingly strategically important. Polar Cousins provides relevant, timely information and historical examples to contrast the geostrategic significance of the Arctic and Antarctic helping the reader understand the two poles, and how and why they matter." —Frances Ulmer, Former Lieutenant Governor of Alaska; Former Chancellor of the University of Alaska Anchorage; Senior Fellow, Arctic Initiative, Belfer Center

"Polar Cousins is an expansive, innovative, fascinating and multi-disciplinary comparative study, examining the state of the Arctic and Antarctic – all at a time of heightened environmental, great power and governance challenges. It introduces fresh scholarship, comparing the circumstances at the two poles, addressing strategic competition, contrasting history and geography, territorial issues, geo-politics, military threats, trade and economic challenges, environmental and ecological concerns and legal perspectives. This is a must read for environmental, security, economic and foreign policy makers, notably including claimant and resident states such as the USA, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand." —Professor John Blaxland, Australian National University; former Head, Strategic and Defence Studies Center

About This Book

Polar Cousins cropped cover

Polar Cousins: Comparing Antarctic and Arctic Geostrategic Futures
Christian Leuprecht
For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation: Polar Cousins: Comparing Antarctic and Arctic Geostrategic Futures. Edited by Christian Leuprecht and Douglas Causey. University of Calgary Press, December 2022.

The Editors