The Interconnectedness of Digitalisation and Human Security in the European High North: Cybersecurity Conceptualised through the Human Security Lens

In: The Yearbook of Polar Law Online
Author: Gerald Zojer
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Digitalisation has increased rapidly in recent decades, and became integral part of the development agenda of most states. The development of cyberspace has led to numerous opportunities for human development, but it also has presented certain challenges to societies. In acknowledging the importance of digital technologies, many states have endorsed strategies for digital development and cybersecurity. Because these strategies are often state-centric, techno-deterministic, and simplistic, they disregard the interconnectedness and complexity of the opportunities and challenges these technologies can entail in a region-specific context.

This paper argues that the human security framework may be applied to analyse and study the region-specific implications of digitalisation. The multidimensional and comprehensive human security approach includes state-centric concerns as well as the needs and fears of people and communities in a specific region. Moreover, the human security framework enables the local population to voice their concerns. The insights that the human security approach offers could contribute to developing meaningful and targeted policies that address the concerns of people and communities in specific regions. The paper uses the argument on the European High North as a case study to show that digitalisation has region specific impacts and how digitalisation is interrelated with human security.

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