• Anne-Katrine Geller
  • Bolethe Hammeken
4. term, Public Administration and Social Science (Master Programme)
Greenland is going through a process towards national independency. This implies that the efforts to achieve self-sustaining economy are intensified, so the nation eventually can get closer to an economical independent nation. This process is not as simple as it first seems to be. Many different spheres of interests will be affected through this process. Meanwhile, some topics are characterized by undefined issues, which have been the primary focus of our analysis. Regarding the current economic structure, we have identified several issues which are parallel to each other. The new sector of business (mining, mineral and oil) in Greenland will lack labour, while experts pointing out that the fishing industry needs to be reduced to free labour to the new sector of business. There are simply too many employees in the fishing industry, which makes the industry less profitable and less sustainable. The Greenland self - government agreement between Danish and Greenlandic politicians is based on income from mining, oil - and the mineral sector, which is why, that Greenland has taken responsibility for the raw material area as the first step, to provide the framework for the new business. We identified, that there is great optimism about the new sector of business, which could increase national economy in Greenland, but unfortunately we also identified, that all the expert recommendations suggests, that the release of labour from the fishing industry could raise the capacity of labour to the maximum possible level. We believe that it is unachievable because of several reasons. Firstly, it is not certain that the fishermen are interested in a career change; secondly it is a fact, that fishermen have an educational background which for most goes to 9th grade in primary school that may make it difficult for them to acquire the knowledge, which is required in the new sector of business. Thirdly, the geographical circumstances can mean, that the jobseekers gets less interest into career change, because of the demand of the flexibility and mobility of the labour; since they most likely live far from working places related to the new sector of business. Regarding education, it is a recurring theme that Greenland should intensify focus on education. We identified, that the government provide a massive efforts on education, but we see a tendency to high dropout rate of students, and that there is still a massive need for foreign labour. The dropout rate is partly linked to the social problems which remain a major issue. In the societal perspective, it is clear that when such a large proportion of the population have poor living conditions, it will have a spillover effect on the individual level, both in terms of education, work and family. At the local level, it is officially the local authorities, which has the responsibility to manage the social sphere, but we see a trend of increased cooperation between politicians, businesses and independent enthusiasts. This means that there is willingness to try to create a framework for better social welfare. If successful this project, it could mean better conditions for the individuals, which can affect several current social issues, including education. With this, we believe that if people can thrive, it will be easier for them to be able to finish an education. It would also strengthen the population, in focusing on the quality of the public welfare rather than egocentric preferences. This would indicate for a society of greater social capital, where the desire for participation and engagement can get better terms.
Publication date2010
Number of pages135
Publishing institutionAalborg Universitet
ID: 19755038