Crisis simulation: Project Arctic

Project Arctic: A simulation of climate-induced conflict in the Arctic Region

CIVICA - The European University of Social Sciences, in collaboration with the IPLI Foundation, invites applications to a Project Arctic: A simulation of climate-induced conflict in the Arctic Region.

Master's students from all CIVICA universities are welcome to apply. Two participants per institution will be selected to represent their university during the simulation, and work together with other teams. All participants will receive a certificate of participation and three awards will be distributed.

The workshop will take place online on:

  • Saturday 28 October from 10am-4:30pm CET and
  • Sunday 29 October from 10am-5:30pm CET

About the workshop

This workshop addresses the complex challenges in the Arctic region, explicitly focusing on climate change as a potential conflict driver. Project Arctic employs the methodology of simulations in order to reveal why the Arctic region is inextricably linked to climate change and conflict and explore the potential outcomes of future policies in the region. The workshop aims to develop robust negotiation, debating, critical thinking and analytical skills. The objective is to offer a framework for young public policy experts to enhance their skill sets in a competitive setting with diverse stakeholders.

The first part of the workshop serves as a foundational module that explores the main dynamics in the Arctic region. There is a plethora of regional challenges, especially from the perspective of the primary geopolitical stakeholders. Russia has a strong military foothold in the Arctic and a keen interest in the area’s rich natural resources. China is conducting an extensive gas drilling campaign, testing new shipping lanes and partnering with the region's military powerhouse, Russia. Countries such as Canada and the United States also possess key interests in the region, as does Norway. In addition, the European Union’s position at the forefront of the fight against climate change through the development of alternative energy sources, resource efficiency and climate change research gives it a natural interest in the future of the region. After exploring the regional geopolitical context, as well as engaging in exercises that examine the link between climate change and conflict, participants will be prepared to represent the stakeholders in the region in a life-like crisis management scenario.

Following an introductory theoretical teaching module, participants will engage in a conflict management exercise, which will provide an opportunity for students to experience the highest level of crisis management from the perspectives of multiple decision-makers. Participants will have the chance to engage in crucial debates under conditions simulating the international climate of negotiations during a crisis. We have prepared a setting that will simulate the nature of face-to-face engagement, as the interactions, dialogue and cooperation between participants is one of our top priorities.

Learning outcomes

  • An augmented knowledge of the region of the Arctic and the major policy debates and arguments concerning the region
  • A better understanding of the policy-making processes and the policies associated with the Arctic region
  • A greater sensitisation to the regional dynamics, geopolitical interests and high-level discussions surrounding climate change, conflict and conflict resolution
  • Enhanced strategic thinking and skills development

Requirements for participation

Participants must attend the entire workshop in order to receive a certificate for the course, delivered by CIVICA and the IPLI Foundation.  We expect participants to be open and willing to actively participate in the exercises.

Students will be assigned roles and will conduct individual and in-pairs research regarding the specific role they have been allocated to.

All teams will design and present a policy brief of their recommendations for the Arctic Region, from the perspective of the stakeholder they represent (e.g., the EU).

At the end, three awards will be granted to teams from the CIVICA universities:

  1. Best individual speaker
  2. Best policy brief
  3. Best teamwork

How to apply

Please complete this application form and send it tocivica[at] with the subject line "Project Arctic Application" by 15 October 2023.


  • Timothy Reno
  • Letitia Roman

Timothy holds a Master of Public Affairs degree from Sciences Po Paris. He is a guest lecturer at Hertie School in Berlin and also manages Policy Simulator Lab (PSL), an initiative that develops simulation games for use as pedagogical tools to support interactive learning about policy making processes within the European Union. In addition, Timothy is an associated researcher with Lusíada University in Lisbon.

Letitia studied at the Hertie School in Berlin where she obtained a Master's degree in International Affairs. Her research focus includes Eurpoean Union governance, international security and public policy. Letitia also coordinates research and development at Policy Simulator Lab (PSL). 

General reading

Analytics, FP. “Resource Competition in the Arctic.” Foreign Policy. Foreign Policy, January 1, 7303. 

Graham, Thomas & Amy Myers Jaffe. “There Is No Scramble for the Arctic.” Foreign Affairs, July 27, 2020. 

Gross, Matthew. “Geopolitical Competition in The Arctic Circle.” Harvard International Review. Harvard International Review, December 2, 2020. 

Cepinskyte, Agne & Paul, Michael. “Arctic Security Environment in Flux: Mitigating Geopolitical Competition through a Military-Security Dialogue.” The Arctic Institute, February 11, 2021.


Applicants must complete this application form and send it tocivica[at] with the subject line "Project Arctic Application". 

The application deadline is 15 October 2023.