Resources, Extractive Industries and Sustainable Arctic Communities (REXSAC)
The Centre of Excellence for Resources, Extractive Industries and Sustainable Arctic Communities (REXSAC) is a Nordforsk Center of Excellence hosted by KTH Royal Institute of Technology, in collaboration with Stockholm University, the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI), and a number of additional partners. 

Project period: 01.01.2016 – 31.12.2020

REXSAC will focus on the study of extractive resource industries in the Arctic as cultural, social, economic, and ecological phenomena from analysis of why resource extraction commences, what consequences it has for communities in the Arctic and beyond, and what opportunities exist for transitioning toward post-extractive futures. The cultural footprint of a mine is just as real as its environmental and economic footprint, and both must be considered as related (often inseparable) parts of a single whole. No program or centre with this mission currently exists anywhere in the world.

REXSAC will initiate, facilitate and coordinate innovative research while developing research capacity, including substantial training of a new generation of scholars and scientists through PhD education, and contributing to knowledge for community development, policy-making, and concerns of interest for indigenous populations and other Arctic residents. Our mission is to study extractive industries in the Arctic in a comparative and interdisciplinary manner, bringing together insights and tools from across geographic and disciplinary boundaries to develop new tools and support best practices and processes.

Dr. Joan Nymand Larsen (Stefansson Arctic Institute) is leading research task R1 together with Dr. Annika Nilsson (SEI) and Prof. Ninis Rosqvist (SU) on “Defining sustainable development: indicators and assessment”. The purpose of this research task is to develop a reflexive and policy-relevant understanding of sustainable development in a rapidly changing Arctic and to identify a set of indicators that can be used for integrated environmental, social and economic assessment of trends. We will address questions that include e.g.:How can the broad normative goal of “sustainable development” be understood in context of rapid environmental and social change, with particular attention to Arctic extractive industries? What indicators are useful for decision-makers at the local, national and circumpolar level for understanding ongoing and potential future environmental and social changes that affect long-term sustainable development?

REXSAC is led by KTH Royal Institute of Technology in collaboration with Stockholm University and Stockholm Environment Institute as core collaborating institutions. Other partners are the Stefansson Arctic Institute, Akureyri, University of Copenhagen, National Museum of Denmark, Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research, University of Oslo, Greenland Institute for Natural Resources, University of Oulu, Dalarna University College, Swedish Agricultural University, and Memorial University Newfoundland, Canada.