Over the past few years, northern development has become a major issue in all countries who territories extend beyond the Arctic Circle. This fact is in part of a result of the discovery of new resources and the technological means of developing them, but also reflects the aspirations, expectations and growing self-awareness of the native peoples concerned. Though each northern area is different from every other in regard to available natural resources as well as ethnic character and cultural traditions, some common characteristics of northern development may be identified. Most natives in the North desire modernization, i.e. some form of adaptation to the conditions prevailing in the southern, developed parts of their respective countries, which may be referred to in brief as the "southern model". There is no northern model for development; natives see their forms of society in relation to the past, not the future, and therefore regard change as a threat and endeavour to preserve their own values and culture in the process of adaptation to the southern model. The natives, however, desire parity of material condition and esteem with the peoples in the southern areas, and modernization is seen by them as a means of achieving this equality. The desired modernization with equality must, of course, be sought in relation to some compromise between centralization and decentalization of government and employment. The foregoing concepts are discussed in the present paper with reference to Greenland, the development of which has for over a hundred years been the subject of considerable documentation - albeit until quite recently mostly in Danish - and so is amenable to systematic studies such as are not possible in respect of other northern territories.
The following commentary is based upon ten papers on Greenland which were presented at the fourth international congress of the Foundation Française d'Etudes Nordiques held in France in 1969. The papers, two in French and the remainder in English, which appear in the published proceedings of the congress under the collective title "Greenland Today and Tomorrow", constitute a unique symposium on the affairs of the island. Although he attended the congress as a member of the United States delegation, the writer has relied on the published proceedings rather than personal recollections which have become diminished with the passage of time. The authors of the papers are all referred to below in their capacities at the time the congress was held. …
Numerous place names in Greenland are beset with some confusion, and Thule is possibly the most nonspecific of them all. An attempt has been made in the following paper, therefore, to set out some of the various meanings which have been attached to the word.
Prior to 1903, Canada did not effectively exercise jurisdiction over its Arctic territories, where men of various nationalities carried out whaling, hunting, trading and mining without any restriction. The Dominion Government Expedition of 1903-04 on board the Neptune constituted the first significant step towards the assertion of Canadian authority in the eastern Arctic, particularly in Hudson Bay. Its members established a police post, implemented customs procedures, prohibited trade in the hides of musk-ox (an endangered species), and informed the Eskimos that Edward VII was their king. In addition to demonstrating the Dominion Government's authority over its Arctic territories, the Neptune Expedition helped to promote the decline of the whaling industry, which for decades had provided the economic basis of Eskimo life in certain regions.
A means is sought of estimating the value of domestically-produced country food, which is of considerable importance in the northern native economy. The problems involved include the determination of the actual volume of production as well as the uses made of it, the evaluation of income in kind, particularly through the imputation of cash values, and the assessment of the intangibles involved in any direct comparison between the modern and traditional sectors of the northern economy. It is concluded that substitution costs provide the most appropriate measure of value and their use is, therefore, recommended, but with the caution that they cannot serve to measure the value of the activity or environment which produces the country food.