Most of the Arctic, like most of the world, is commonly owned. With ownership comes the obligation to manage our resources for the benefit of the total. To do that, we must understand the reality, the richness, and the responsibility of the North.

– Governor Walter J. Hickel, Founder

About Us

About the Institute of the North

Governor Walter J. Hickel, founder of the Institute of the North, believed strongly that we must understand the reality, the richness and the responsibility of the North.  He championed “the commons” and how to care for commonly-owned lands and resources, in our state and beyond.

Today, the Institute works to share that vision.  Our mission is vital to Alaska’s role as a key stakeholder in policy affecting the Arctic.  We stand at a pivotal place where ideas and connections matter – across the state and on a global scale.

In an increasingly busy Arctic, many of the issues affecting Alaska have taken on new importance. Alaskans understand the inherent challenges to living in the Arctic but have found wealth in the quality of life and economic opportunity. That wealth relies on building and maintaining critical infrastructure in the state. For Alaskans to thrive in the North there must be a foundation in place to sustain communities and drive development.

The Institute of the North is a 501(c)3 non profit. Areas of special study include Alaska, the many regions of the Arctic and other areas of the world that are wealthy in both human cultures and natural resources. The Institute has gained a wide reputation as a center for the study of commonly-owned lands, seas and resources using Alaska as a model.