The Yearbook of Plar Law Vol. 4, (2012), 3-11.
12 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2014
Date Written: January 26, 2014
Both the Arctic and the Antarctic have been seen as types of laboratories for natural sciences to examine ‘life on the edge’, and polar research has long been dominated by natural sciences. Nowadays the social sciences are paying more attention. In the Antarctic, especially due to the unique international governance arrangement, international relations and international law scholars have found interesting research issues in relation to the 1959 Antarctic Treaty and the gradually evolving Antarctic Treaty System (ATS). In the Arctic things have evolved differently. During the Cold War the region was a major military theater and, accordingly, predominantly international relations and geopolitical scholars with a realist orientation studied relevant developments. Yet with the end of the Cold War, an emerging co-operation between Arctic States had brought about additional focus on environmental protection in the region, as social scientists (including lawyers) have increasingly started to focus on the Arctic.
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