• Threat, opportunity, cooperation, and competition: defining China's integration into the Arctic

      Bowman, Susan Elizabeth; Boylan, Brandon; Skya, Walter; Bertelsen, Rasmus (2020-12)
      Despite widespread attention to China's interest in the Arctic, little research examines how the country approaches the region. This thesis uses an inductive and qualitative approach to examine China's relationships with the eight Arctic states and major international institutions in the Arctic. This thesis asks: How is China integrating into the Arctic? How do Arctic states view China's integration? Through content analysis, narratives tell the story of China's relationship with the Arctic 8 and Arctic institutions. China's integration is explored on a fundamental level through the comparison of bilateral and multilateral relations, followed by more strategic undertones including threat, opportunity, cooperation, and competition. China's integration into the Arctic is multi- faceted and demonstrates a range of characteristics. The primary focus of China's integration is the use of bilateral and multilateral approaches and the use of strategic soft and sharp power. Each Arctic state views China's integration differently depending on its tolerance for China's approach to integration. This study adds to the existing literature of China in the Arctic and provides a baseline for future research on non-Arctic states in Arctic international relations.