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

Host Committee

The United States Chairmanship of the Arctic Council has significant implications for Alaskans. The state will be the focus of international attention for the next two years as visiting delegations from around the world participate actively in meetings taking place here. The opportunity for Alaskans to shape international discourse about the Arctic has never been greater. 

Formal Arctic Council meetings in Alaska—with participation limited to members of the national, permanent participant or observer delegations—will still provide ample opportunity for Alaska to arrange side meetings, to liaise with the U.S. State Department to develop value-added opportunities that bridge local and visiting interests, and to share the reality, richness and responsibility of being an Arctic state.

Working closely with the Governor’s office, the Institute of the North will act as the Secretariat for the Host Committee during the two-year U.S. Chairmanship of the Arctic Council (2015-2017). 

Host Committee activities include:

  • Public Workshops – Prior to a Senior Arctic Official meeting, a half day public workshop will be convened to update Alaskans on U.S. activities during the Chairmanship.
  • Welcome Reception – The evening before an Arctic Council meeting, the Host Committee will invite visiting delegations to join local leaders in a networking and social event.
  • Alaska Arctic Policy Tours – Two day visits to Alaska’s Arctic, arranged around Arctic Council meetings, will provide an opportunity for visiting delegations to learn about Alaska’s Arctic.
  • Outreach Materials – Developed from every Arctic event or activity taking place in Alaska during the U.S. Chairmanship of the Arctic Council, with key takeaways for Alaskans.
  • Public Relations – Development of an archive of targeted messages and materials for delivery to the U.S. and across the circumpolar North. 

Arctic Council Meeting Schedule:


  • October 1-2, 2015: Sustainable Development Working Group (SDWG) Meeting, Chena (Fairbanks), AK
  • October 20-22, 2015: Senior Arctic Officials (SAO) Meeting, Anchorage, AK


  • March 11-12: SDWG Meeting, Barrow, AK
  • March 15-17: SAO Meeting, Fairbanks, AK
  • September 29-30, SDWG Meeting, Bangor, Maine
  • October 4-6: SAO Meeting, Portland, Maine


  • February 7-8: SDWG Meeting, Kotzebue, AK
  • March 7-9: SAO Meeting, Juneau, AK
  • May: Closing Ministerial Meeting, Fairbanks, AK