International conservation law is inherently nation-state based. Crucial agreements such as the International Whaling Convention, Polar Bear, CITES, Biodiversity or Migratory Species Conventions have been concluded between nation states while many local communities in the Arctic rely on or interact with species which are protected under international conservation law.
This session discusses how local interests can be best integrated in efforts to protect species in the north and what their possibilities are to make their voices as stakeholders heard. It will be discussed what primary and secondary interests have shaped and are continuing to shape the scope of the agreements and which role local communities, livelihoods and cultures play therein. It will be examined how the international community has integrated prevailing narratives on species protection and how these can be brought into reconciliation with international human rights standards pertaining to the right to access resources, the right to property or the right to culture. 
The focus of this session lies on indigenous and non-indigenous communities in the north. The session is of interest for wildlife-dependent and wildlife-interacting communities, decicion-makers and members of the environmental protection community as well as legal and anthropological scholars.