Ålands fredsinstitut
The Åland Islands Peace Institute

Hamngatan 4/PB85
AX-22101 Mariehamn, Åland, Finland
Tel. +358 18 15570
For more contact information click here.

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Publication about
the Åland Example


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News from the demilitarisation project – First scientific article published
Wednesday, 03 August 2016
Yannick Poullie IJMG cover kopia

Yannick Poullie, former junior researcher in the project ”Demilitarisation in an increasingly militarised world”, has published the results of his research in an article entitled “Åland’s demilitarisation and neutralisation at the end of the Cold War: Parliamentary discussions in Åland and Finland 1988-1995”. The article is published in the International Journal on Minority and Group Rights Vol. 23, Issue 2 (2016) 179-2010.

Poullie’s abstract explains the thrust of the argument: As a region that is simultaneously demilitarised, neutralised and autonomous, the Åland Islands represent a unique and long-established case in international law. However, this status was never independent of surrounding events. The early 1990s saw both the end of the Cold War and Finland’s accession to the European Union. This paper offers an analysis of the discussion regarding Åland’s demilitarised and neutral­ised status among both Finnish and Ålandic legislators during this period. It finds that Finnish policy-makers saw little need to discuss the matter. Åland’s officials continu­ously criticised the Finnish Defence Forces’ presence in the region as excessive and proved unwilling to let the issue rest. Against formal obstacles, they established them­selves as a relevant actor, facilitated by differing approaches of political, diplomatic and military officials in Finland. Other sovereign states showed only limited interest in the discussion, making it a domestic one for the most part.

While the project is not entitled to publish electronically the article in full text, anyone interested in the text can contact the research project leader, Sia Spiliopoulou Åkermark, at sia[at]peace.ax with a request.

The article is the first internationally published result of the research project “Demilitarisation in an Increasingly Militarised World. International perspectives in a multilevel framework – the case of the Åland Islands”. The project is a cooperation between researchers at the Åland Islands Peace Institute and the Arctic Center (University of Lapland, Rovaniemi). Research is supported by the Kone foundation and the Åland Culture Foundation (Ålands kulturstiftelse).

Yannick Poullie has previously on the same theme published the blog piece Åland’s demilitarisation and neutralisation at the end of the Cold War, 1988–1995.

Yannick Poullie is now continuing his career as a doctoral candidate in Germany.

Lunch seminar: Professor Kjell-Åke Nordquist on the peace process in Burma/Myanmar
Thursday, 02 June 2016

Kjellake 72On 16 June, the ÅIPI will arrange a lunch seminar on the national peace process in Burma Myanmar with Professor Kjell-Åke Nordquist. The seminar will be held in Swedish at Hotell Arkipelag in Mariehamn at 11.30. Lunch can be purchased in the restaurant and taken to the workshop to be held at the secluded southern end of the restaurant. The seminar starts at 11.30 and lasts one hour.

Kjell-Åke Nordquist is the Director of the Åland Islands Peace Institute, and has been working in the fields of autonomy and conflict resolution both as a researcher and a practitioner, and has been a member of the Board as well as the Research Council of the Åland Islands Peace Institute since its start. As a practitioner he has been working with peace processes mainly in Colombia, the Middle East, and South East Asia (Timor-Leste, Burma).

In Burma/Myanmar, various parts of the phased negotiation process that will lead to a national peace accord, is currently under planning. Since autumn 2015 there is a ceasefire, signed by several armed ethnic armies and the government. The forms of political and broad completion of the different civil wars, that have occurred in the country since the 1960s, is still subject to negotiations. One of the major issues is how to implement self-government structures within the federal system of Burma/Myanmar.

Visit from Moldova and Gagauzia
Friday, 20 May 2016

Moldova Gagauzia webb

On May 25-26 Åland was visited by the working group of the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova and Gagauzia people’s assembly. The Gagauz-Yeri autonomous region, was established in southern Moldova in the 1990’s to safeguard the rights of the Gagauz minority. The study visit to Åland was arranged by CMI, with financial support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sweden. CMI works to facilitate informal and official dialogue processes between the Parliament of Moldova and Gagauzia’s People’s Assembly to improve mechanisms of center-autonomy relations.

While on Åland, the group had several meetings with officials and politicians. The Åland Islands Peace Institute arranged a round table discussion for the visitors, moderated by the Director, Professor Kjell-Åke Nordquist and including the Chair of the Board, Ms Barbro Sundback, the Head of Research, Associate Professor Sia Spiliopoulou Åkermark, researcher Saila Heinikoski and Information Officer Susann Simolin.

In the report ”Conflict Regulation through Self-Rule: Success factors for Territorial Autonomy Systems” published in the Åland Islands Peace Institute's report series in 2015, Felix Schulte has used the Gagauz autonomy as one of the case studies. The report can be found here.

Kjell-Åke Nordquist received the title of Professor
Friday, 20 May 2016

Kjell Åke NordquistThe Director of the Åland Islands Peace Institute, Kjell-Åke Nordquist, has been appointed Professor in International Relations, with particular focus on Peace Building and Human Rights, at the The Stockholm School of Theology in Sweden.

Blog piece on crisis talk, by Sia Spiliopoulou Åkermark
Monday, 09 May 2016

In a blog piece - published on Europe day, 9 May - Associate Professor Sia Spiliopoulou Åkermark notes that we are currently experiencing an overuse of the word "crisis".  She argues that this worldwide "crisis talk" may overshadow our awareness of the many successes of multilateral cooperation and that it may function as a reason to evade from norms, legal ones as well as social.

Read the text here.

In memory of Alyson Bailes
Sunday, 08 May 2016

Alyson Bailes, scientific advisor to the research project ”Demilitarisation in an increasingly militarised world”, passed away 29 April 2016. Alyson Bailes was not simply a diplomat and an ambassador; she was a true intellectual and a vivid thinker. Alyson Bailes accepted eagerly to join the advisory scientific board of the project in spite of her life-threatening illness. Her intellectual curiosity, vast knowledge, firm support and immense generosity were a most valuable contribution to the setting up and early steps of our research and until the very end of Alyson’s life. All of us in the project shall miss Alyson Bailes modesty and frankness and we regret deeply that she cannot join us in future discussions and rounds of email communications.

Sia Spiliopoulou Åkermark, Head of Research

Nyhetsbrev / Newsletter 2/2016
Thursday, 28 April 2016

Heather sv en

Link to Nyhetsbrev / Newsletter 2/2016

Download newsletter in pdf /ladda ner nyhetsbrevet i pdf


  • Ny rapport granskar hur EU-rätten påverkar Ålands självstyrelse
  • Lunchseminarium med Gunilla Herolf: Vad hände med EU:s säkerhetspolitik?
  • Praktikansökningar för hösten 2016 tas emot
  • Fredsinstitutet i Östtimor/Timor-Leste, Myanmar/Burma, Haag och Uppsala
  • Blogginlägg och publikation om språklig rättvisa och flerspråkighet i Europa


  • New report assesses how EU law is affecting the autonomy of Åland
  • Lunch seminar: PhD Gunilla Herolf on EU security politics
  • Call for applications for autumn internship
  • The ÅIPI in East Timor/Timor-Leste, Myanmar/Burma, The Hague and Uppsala
  • Blog piece and publication on language equality and language diversity in Europe
Lunch seminar: PhD Gunilla Herolf on EU security politics
Thursday, 28 April 2016

On 17 May, the ÅIPI will arrange a lunch seminar the EU security politics with  PhD Gunilla Herolf. The seminar will be held in Swedish at Hotell Arkipelag in Mariehamn at 11.30.
Gunilla Herolf  is Chair of the Research Council of the Åland Islands Peace Institute. She has been a researcher at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs and at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). Her main fields of interest are European integration and security cooperation.

Nordquist held lectures in East Timor/Timor-Leste
Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Kjell Ake Osttimor 2016

From 16 to 23 April, Director Kjell-Åke Norquist visited East Timor/Timor-Leste to lecture at the Dili Institute of Technology on how institutional mechanisms can contribute to stability during the shift from post-conflict to stable societal relations. In this context experiences from Åland were discussed, as well as possibilities for future contacts between Åland and Timor-Leste.

Report on EU law and the division of competences between Finland and Åland
Monday, 25 April 2016

anna lena 2008Rapport 1 2016 Anna Lena Sjolund Page 01Report 1-2016:
EU-rätten och behörighetsfördelningen mellan riket Finland och landskapet Åland
(EU law and the division of competences between the state of Finland and the autonomous region of Åland)

Anna-Lena Sjölund
No. 1-2016

When Finland and Åland joined the EU they both gave up elements of their own legislative competences in favour of the EU. At the same time it was concluded that the EU-membership would not change the division of competences between Åland and Finland. In reality, the issue has proven to be more complex and EU-membership has on several occasions raised the question as to how the division of competences between Åland and Finland should be interpreted when it comes to implementation of EU law.

The report, published in Swedish, can be downloaded for free here.

An information sheet with information in Swedish and English, can be downloaded here.

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