The decision to grant three new initiatives Flagship status in the Policy Area Secure was made during the first National...
Enablement besides Constraints: Human Security and a Cyber Multi-Disciplinary Framework in the European High North.
Digitalisation is changing societies and human activities rapidly in the European High North. National and regional policies aim at facilitating the digital development and/or mitigating its potentially harmful effects, but give little attention to the interests and needs of people and communities experiencing it. The policies developed in national or regional capitals are aimed at sustaining the overall economic growth, creating cost-efficiency gains or enhancing national security. Instead, people and communities living in the “developing regions” within the countries are treated mostly as objects of development whose lives are to be improved through digitisation.
This research project claims that the primary aim of digitalisation and cybersecurity policies should be the advancement of human wellbeing. In order to justify the claim, it scrutinises digitalisation and cybersecurity from the human security perspective. Its empirical focus is on the European High North which particular characteristics – delicate balance between the nature and human practices, vast distances, sparse and ageing population, limited resources and infrastructures, harsh climate, vulnerability in the face of environmental threats – have only partially been recognised in the national frameworks of Finland, Sweden and Norway. Alongside scrutinising the effects of top down policies facilitating and securing digitalisation, the research project interacts with people and communities in the region to find out their associated needs, interests and fears. The aim is to make bottom up influence possible through knowledge production and dissemination.
The project seeks to depict both positive (enabling) and negative (threatening) potentials residing in the digital development in the European High North. It focuses on finding ways to reinforce the positive potentials while diluting the negative ones. It highlights societal cleavages which digitalisation of society brings forth or intensifies while suggesting ways and means to bridge them. In the process, it treats people and communities living in the region as both objects and subjects of digitalisation. It also strives to redefine cybersecurity from the human security perspective as well as to incorporate cyber issues into the human security agenda. More about the project: