Tove H. Malloy

My professional website

Nordic Autonomies and European Territorial Management

Like in many parts of the world, Nordic policy-makers have been confronted with changes as a result of the globalisation of trade and market integration. Amid the change and turbulence, regions2 follow different paths. While some regions do relatively well, others are less successful. Territories with poor links to the sources of prosperity, or afflicted by migration, and lagging behind with respect to infrastructure and private investment may find it difficult to keep up with the general trend. Central governments are no longer the sole provider of territorial policy, and the vertical distribution of power between the different tiers of government may shift and need to be reassessed. Decentralisation of fiscal resources may be needed, in order to better respond to the expectations of citizens and improve policy efficiency. Public authorities need to weigh up current challenges, evaluate the strategies pursued in recent years, and define new options. In Europe this has put the focus on regionalisation in terms of the meso level between the state and the local community both intra-state and inter-state.

Collective autonomies and identity groups, such as traditional minorities, are potential participants in the mobilisation towards European regionalisation through regional co-operation. The participation of traditional minority autonomies is seldom discussed in relation to territorial management in Europe. Yet, several traditional minorities and indigenous people enjoying autonomous powers participate in regional co-operation efforts. in my rticle (link below), “Nordic (Minority) Autonomies and Territorial Management in Europe: Empowerment through Regionalisation?” in the International Journal on Minority and Group Rights (Vo. 20) I discuss the involvement of Greenland, the Faroe Islands and the Åland Islands in the development and co-operation of macro-regions. Regional co-operation has long been a corner stone of Europe’s integration project, and macro-regions is the latest concept in the effort to strengthen regions economically in the wake of the onset of globalisation and indeed global economic crises. In contradistinction to the perceived notion of traditional minorities as conflict prone troublemakers, it is argued that in the effort to maintain the peace and overcome persistent challenges common to both majorities and minorities, traditional minorities are increasingly pro-active and working for the survival of their autonomous regions. This is manifested, among other, in the manner in which they participate – albeit unevenly – in regional co-operation aimed at economic development and integratn.

Download article: IJGR_20_01_5_Malloy

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