Russia-EU: Soft-Power Risks in the Eurasian-Arctic Context

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2018-62-9-112-120

E. Labetskaya (,
Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO), 23, Profsoyuznaya Str., Moscow 117997, Russian Federation 

Abstract. Russia–EU relations are regarded within a framework of the ongoing author’s “Trans-Arctic study”, which allows to consider new formats of global interaction in the Arctic macro-region, often referred to as conflict-free. Behind the “conflict-free Arctic”, the hybrid policy of “Smart & Intelligent Power” hides, which is fraught with the erosion of identity in the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation (AZ RF). Soft-power risks, which are brought to the AZ RF due to transformation of the Russia–EU interaction paradigm, are its part. The modernized “Northern Sea Route” and huge natural resources of the AZ RF are a colossal “capital” of Russia, which cause envy and generate the wish of foes to exercise economic, political, cultural and information control over this “capital”. The multiplier of these challenges is the growth of global significance of the “Eurasian-Arctic field” in the Trans-Arctic, where the “soft-, smart-, intelligent-, sharp-power” has become a popular instrument of foreign policy. An analysis of the EU’s ambitious integrated Arctic strategy and its model of interactions in the region suggests that in the near future, the European Union’s presence in the Trans-Arctic will remain limited. And “soft-power risks” generated here by the EU will be “broadcast” to Russia through the actors of the Trans-Artic multi-level management system, who are closely affiliated with Brussels. For a safe Russia–EU interaction in the “Eurasian-Arctic Field” of the Trans-Arctic or in the AZ RF it is necessary to elaborate a new model, which would take into account the risk of “soft-power and sharp-power” intervention – the one that will not allow to awaken the dormant conflict-generating force of the Trans-Arctic. 

Keywords: Eurasia, the EU, Russia, Trans-Arctic, security, geopolitics, space, securitization, power 


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For citation:
Labetskaya E. Russia-EU: Soft-Power Risks in the Eurasian-Arctic Context. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2018, vol. 62, no. 9, pp. 112-120.

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