One of the key projects that the Treasure America Team worked on this summer is an analysis of the potential for a successful tourism-based economy in Northern Alaska, specifically the town of Kaktovik. The report (available here) suggests that there is indeed enough potential for high-value tourism to give Kaktovik a significantly higher degree of economic independance than the alternative model – continued welfare-like dependance on oil extraction proceeds. Significant challenges, however, exist toward making this happen – most notably a complete lack of tourist infrastucture. The report concludes that with a high level of entreprenership and good publicity, the town has an opportunity to really make something of itself, achieve prosperity, and avoid the negatives that would inevitably come their way should drilling proceed in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Nick Aster is a new media architect and the founder of TriplePundit.com
TriplePundit.com has since grown to become one of the web's leading sources of news and ideas on how business can be used to make the world a better place.
Prior to TriplePundit Nick worked for Mother Jones magazine, successfully re-launching the magazine's online presence. He was instrumental in the creation of TreeHugger.com, managing the technical side of the publication for 3 years as well as an active consultant for individuals and companies entering the world of micro-publishing. He earned his stripes working for Gawker Media and Moreover Technologies in the early days of blogging.
Nick holds an MBA in sustainable management from the Presidio School of Management and graduated with a BA in History from Washington University in St. Louis.
Follow Nick Aster @nickaster