Browsing by Subject "GERMANY"

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  • Reckling, Moritz; Hecker, Jens-Martin; Bergkvist, Goeran; Watson, Christine A.; Zander, Peter; Schlaefke, Nicole; Stoddard, Frederick L.; Eory, Vera; Topp, Cairistiona F. E.; Maire, Juliette; Bachinger, Johann (2016)
    Methods are needed for the design and evaluation of cropping systems, in order to test the effects of introducing or reintroducing crops into rotations. The interaction of legumes with other crops (rotational effects) requires an assessment at the cropping system scale. The objective of this work is to introduce a cropping system framework to assess the impacts of changes in cropping systems in a participatory approach with experts, i.e., the integration of legumes into crop rotations and to demonstrate its application in two case studies. The framework consists of a rule-based rotation generator and a set of algorithms to calculate impact indicators. It follows a three-step approach: (i) generate rotations, (ii) evaluate crop production activities using environmental, economic and phytosanitary indicators, and (iii) design cropping systems and assess their impacts. Experienced agronomists and environmental scientists were involved at several stages of the framework development and testing in order to ensure the practicability of designed cropping systems. The framework was tested in Vastra Gotaland (Sweden) and Brandenburg (Germany) by comparing cropping systems with and without legumes. In both case studies, cropping systems with legumes reduced nitrous oxide emissions with comparable or slightly lower nitrate-N leaching, and had positive phytosanitary effects. In arable systems with grain legumes, gross margins were lower than in cropping systems without legumes despite taking pre-crop effects into account. Forage cropping systems with legumes had higher or equivalent gross margins and at the same time higher environmental benefits than cropping systems without legumes. The framework supports agronomists to design sustainable legume-supported cropping systems and to assess their impacts. (C) 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
  • Alho, Eeva (2017)
    The sourcing of outside investment capital from non-members has motivated the emergence of innovative cooperative structures, but the literature on these new organizational forms omits the perspective of an outside investor. This paper reports a study that applied a choice experiment method in a novel setting to increase understanding of the preferences of investors in agricultural firms. A large questionnaire dataset consisting of 845 financially literate subjects enabled testing of the form in which residual and control rights provide incentives for non-producer investors to invest in agricultural firms. The choice experiment data were analyzed using a latent class model. The results demonstrate that the subjects were interested in the currently hypothetical, new types of investment instruments in agricultural producer cooperatives. Three investor classes were distinguished based on the preferences: return-seeking, ownership-oriented and risk-averse investors. Who controls the firm appears to be irrelevant concerning willingness to invest, while the rural ties of the respondent are positively related to the preference for voting rights.
  • Krischer, Jeffrey P.; Cuthbertson, David; Couluris, Marisa; Knip, Mikael; Virtanen, Suvi M. (2020)
    Aims/hypothesis This paper presents the relationship between islet autoantibodies, precursors of type 1 diabetes, and the development of persistent asthma, allergic rhinitis and atopic eczema. Methods A total of 2159 newborns who had a first-degree relative with type 1 diabetes and selected HLA genotypes were followed until the youngest participant reached 10 years of age. Islet cell antibodies (ICA) were detected using indirect immunofluorescence. Autoantibodies to insulin (IAA), GAD (GADA), the tyrosine phosphatase-related insulinoma-associated 2 molecule (IA-2A) and zinc transporter 8 (ZnT8A) were quantified with the use of specific radiobinding assays. As an ancillary study, the incidence of asthma, allergic rhinitis and eczema was assessed in 1106 of these children using the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) core questionnaire when the children were 9-11 years old. HRs with 95% CIs were calculated to depict the incidence of these diseases following seroconversion to autoantibody positivity. Results The cumulative incidence of atopic eczema, allergic rhinitis and persistent asthma were 22%, 9% and 7.5%, respectively, by 9-11 years of age. The occurrence of diabetes-related autoantibodies showed a protective association with subsequently reported incidence of asthma and eczema. The incidence of rhinitis was not significantly related to the occurrence of IAA or GADA (statistical power was limited), but demonstrated the same inverse relationship as did the other diseases with ICA or when multiple autoantibodies first appeared together. Conclusions/interpretation The findings add evidence to the relationships between these atopic diseases and diabetes-related autoimmunity and also suggest that, for eczema, the interaction depends upon which autoantibody appeared first.
  • Nokireki, Tiina; Jakava-Viljanen, Miia; Virtala, Anna-Maija; Sihvonen, Liisa (2017)
    Background: Rabies is preventable by pre-and/or post-exposure prophylaxis consisting of series of rabies vaccinations and in some cases the use of immunoglobulins. The success of vaccination can be estimated either by measuring virus neutralising antibodies or by challenge experiment. Vaccines based on rabies virus offer cross-protection against other lyssaviruses closely related to rabies virus. The aim was to assess the success of rabies vaccination measured by the antibody response in dogs (n = 10,071) and cats (n = 722), as well as to investigate the factors influencing the response to vaccination when animals failed to reach a rabies antibody titre of = 0.5 IU/ml. Another aim was to assess the level of protection afforded by a commercial veterinary rabies vaccine against intracerebral challenge in mice with European bat lyssavirus type 2 (EBLV-2) and classical rabies virus (RABV), and to compare this with the protection offered by a vaccine for humans. Results: A significantly higher proportion of dogs (10.7%, 95% confidence interval CI 10.1-11.3) than cats (3.5%; 95% CI 2.3-5.0) had a vaccination antibody titre of <0.5 IU/ml. In dogs, vaccination with certain vaccines, vaccination over 6 months prior the time of antibody determination and vaccination of dogs with a size of > 60 cm or larger resulted in a higher risk of failing to reach an antibody level of at least 0.5 IU/ml. When challenged with EBLV-2 and RABV, 80 and 100% of mice vaccinated with the veterinary rabies vaccine survived, respectively. When mice were vaccinated with the human rabies vaccine and challenged with EBLV-2, 75-80% survived, depending on the booster. All vaccinated mice developed sufficient to high titres of virus-neutralising antibodies (VNA) against RABV 21-22 days post-vaccination, ranging from 0.5 to 128 IU/ml. However, there was significant difference between antibody titres after vaccinating once in comparison to vaccinating twice (P <0.05). Conclusions: There was a significant difference between dogs and cats in their ability to reach a post vaccination antibody titre of = 0.5 IU/ml. Mice vaccinated with RABV-based rabies vaccines were partly cross-protected against EBLV-2, but there was no clear correlation between VNA titres and cross-protection against EBLV-2. Measurement of the RABV VNA titre can only be seen as a partial tool to estimate the cross-protection against other lyssaviruses. Booster vaccination is recommended for dogs and cats if exposed to infected bats.
  • Heitmann, A.; Jansen, S.; Luehken, R.; Leggewie, M.; Badusche, M.; Pluskota, B.; Becker, N.; Vapalahti, O.; Schmidt-Chanasit, J.; Tannich, E. (2017)
    Mosquitoes collected in Germany in 2016, including Culex pipiens pipiens biotype pipiens, Culex torrentium and Aedes albopictus, as well as Culex pipiens pipiens biotype molestus (in colony since 2011) were experimentally infected with Zika virus (ZIKV) at 18 degrees C or 27 degrees C. None of the Culex taxa showed vector competence for ZIKV. In contrast, Aedes albopictus were susceptible for ZIKV but only at 27 degrees C, with transmission rates similar to an Aedes aegypti laboratory colony tested in parallel.
  • Rossow, H.; Ollgren, J.; Hytonen, J.; Rissanen, H.; Huitu, O.; Henttonen, H.; Kuusi, M.; Vapalahti, O. (2015)
    We studied the incidence of reported tularaemia by year and region and the prevalence of antibodies against Francisella tularensis in the adult general population in Finland. Moreover, we assessed the correlation between vole population cycles and human tularaemia outbreaks. The seroprevalence study made use of serum samples from a nationwide population-based health survey (Health 2000). The samples of 1,045 randomly selected persons, representative for the Finnish population in each region, were screened with an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the presence of IgG antibodies against F. tularensis, and positive results were further confirmed by immunoblotting. A serological response to F. tularensis was found in 2% (95% confidence interval: 1.1-3.5) of the population. Incidence and seroprevalence were highest in the same areas, and vole population peaks clearly preceded tularaemia outbreaks one year later.
  • Lajunen, Antti; Kivekas, Klaus; Vepsalainen, Jari; Tammi, Kari (2020)
    Different estimations have been presented for the amount of electric vehicles in the future. These estimations rarely take into account any realistic dynamics of the vehicle fleet. The objective of this paper is to analyze recently presented future scenarios about the passenger vehicle fleet estimations and create a foundation for the development of a fleet estimation model for passenger cars dedicated to the Finnish vehicle market conditions. The specific conditions of the Finnish light-duty vehicle fleet are taken into account as boundary conditions for the model development. The fleet model can be used for the estimation of emissions-optimal future vehicle fleets and the evaluation of the carbon dioxide emissions of transportation. The emission analysis was done for four different scenarios of the passenger vehicle fleet development in Finland. The results show that the high average age of the fleet and high number of older gasoline vehicles will slow down the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions during the next five to ten years even with a high adoption rate of electric vehicles. It can be concluded that lowering the average age, increasing biofuel mixing ratios, and increasing the amount of rechargeable electric vehicles are the most effective measures to reduce carbon dioxide emissions of the Finnish passenger vehicle fleet in the future.
  • Ranacher, Lea; Lähtinen, Katja; Järvinen, Erno; Toppinen, Anne Maarit Kristiina (2017)
    This paper investigates public perceptions related to forest ecosystem services (ES), which have been identified as one of the key topics in forest sector communication. ES represents a prime example of an issue that merits more in-depth analysis. In this study, we (I) evaluate the views of the general public on the importance of forests contributing to different ES; (II) determine the public's need for information on the impact of forest sector businesses on ecosystems; and (Ill) assess how responsibly the public believes that forest sector companies act in relation to their impacts on ecosystems. A structured questionnaire using a 5-point Likert-scale was made available as an online survey targeting respondents from four European countries (Austria, Germany, Finland and Slovenia) in each national language and English. Between May and September 2015, 219 responses were received and analyzed using descriptive statistics, exploratory factor analysis, t-test, and ANOVA. Respondents showed high levels of agreement for items accounting for regulating and supporting ES. Information needs on forest sector business impacts were found to be high, whereas there was much greater division about the level of perceived forest sector responsibility. Regarding the public perception of forest ES, three dimensions were identified: "primary ES", "consumable ES", and "social cohesion related ES". Some relationships between the respondents' socio-demographic characteristics and the three dimensions of ES were uncovered: for example, "Consumable ES" are more important for female respondents and those who do not derive income from the forest sector. (C) 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • Tiittala, Paula; Tuomisto, Karolina; Puumalainen, Taneli; Lyytikäinen, Outi; Ollgren, Jukka; Snellman, Olli; Helve, Otto (2018)
    Background: Infectious disease screening of migrants at increased risk is a feature of national infection prevention and control measures. Asylum seekers in Finland are offered screening of tuberculosis (TB), hepatitis B, human immunodeficiency virus infection (HIV) and syphilis based on individual risk assessment. We aimed to evaluate the public health response to a large influx of asylum seekers to Finland in 2015-2016 with respect to national guidelines on initial health services and infectious disease screening. Methods: We used immigration and healthcare procurement data for all 38,134 asylum seekers to Finland during 2015-2016 to assess the implementation, timing and yields of infectious disease screening. Results: The coverage of pulmonary TB screening was 71.6% [95% CI 71.1-72.0%] and that of hepatitis B, HIV or syphilis 60. 6% [60.1-61.1%] among those eligible for screening. The estimated average delay from arrival to pulmonary TB screening was 74 days for adults and 43 days for children. Delay to hepatitis B, HIV and syphilis screening was 91 days for adults and 47 days for children. The seroprevalence of hepatitis B surface antigen positivity was 1.4% [95% CI 1.3-1.6%], HIV 0.3% [95% CI 0.1-0.4%] and Treponema pallidum specific antibodies 1.0% [95% CI 0.8-1.1%]. Data did not allow assessment of yields of pulmonary TB screening. Conclusions: Up to one third of asylum seekers were not reached by screening and screenings were delayed from target timeframes. Children, as a vulnerable population, were screened earlier than adults. To ensure higher screening coverage, infectious disease risks should be reassessed and screening completed at contacts to healthcare during the post-asylum phase of integration. The large influx of asylum seekers to Finland in 2015-2016 tested the country's public health preparedness. After action reviews of the public health response to the large migrant influx such as screening implementation can be used for evidence-based improvement of public health preparedness and guidelines for initial health services and infectious disease screening.
  • Bergenheim, Sophy; Klockar Linder, My (2020)
    The aim of this article is to nuance notions of ‘pronatalism’ by applying it as an analytical concept for studying population and family policy Sweden and Finland in the 1940s and 1950s. This endeavour is pursued by analysing the ideologies and practices of three pronatalist non-governmental organisations from Sweden, Finland and Swedish Finland: the Swedish Population and Family Federation (Befolkningsförbundet Svenska Familjevärnet), the Finnish Population and Family Welfare League (Väestöliitto) and the Swedish Population Federation in Finland (Svenska Befolkningsförbundet i Finland, SBF). All three organisations promoted family-friendly policies, emphasised the need for wide-spread population policy education or ‘propaganda’, and framed pronatalist population policy as a collective issue of the nation or ‘people’, yet with different motivations and framings. Väestöliitto and SBF related the so-called population question to an external threat: the Soviet Union that threatened the geopolitical status of Finland, and the pressure of the Finnish-speaking majority, respectively. In addition, SBF saw that the Finland-Swedes were delusional about their demographic and cultural vulnerability and were hence causing their own demise. Familjevärnet, on the other hand, first and foremost connected family and population policy to the furthering of welfare, solidarity and democracy, primarily within Sweden but also transnationally. Respectively, the organisations also framed motherhood slightly differently. Väestöliitto and SBF portrayed procreation as a civic duty and motherhood as the most important role of women. Familjevärnet also viewed motherhood as an important and natural role for women, yet not as an exclusive civic duty. Rather, it emphasised that all citizens had a duty to contribute to a positive demographic development and family-friendly society, either through procreation or by partaking in the cost of bringing up children.
  • Sane, J.; Ollgren, J.; Makary, P.; Vapalahti, O.; Kuusi, M.; Lyytikainen, O. (2016)
    Puumala hantavirus (PUUV) causes haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome in humans, an endemic disease in Finland. We aimed to study recent trends in PUUV infections in Finland, to evaluate whether there are regional differences in seasonality and long-term cycles and whether the patterns have changed over time. We analysed serologically confirmed acute PUUV infections reported to the National Infectious Disease Register from 1 April 1995 to 31 March 2014. A total of 30 942 cases of PUUV infections were identified during the study period. The average annual incidence was 31 cases/100 000 person-years with the highest in Eastern Finland and the lowest in Southwestern Finland. Throughout Finland there was not an increasing trend in incidence but changes in incidence, seasonality and long-term cycles differed regionally. Long-term cycles supported by high Bayesian posterior probabilities (73-100%) differed between the south and the north, shifting from 3 to 4 years, respectively. Temporal changes in seasonality were most prominent in Southwestern Finland. The pattern of human PUUV infection epidemiology probably primarily reflects the spatio-temporal interaction between bank-vole population dynamics and climate.
  • Peura, Pekka; Haapanen, Ari; Reini, Kaarina; Törmä, Hannu (2018)
    The scope of this research is to make quantitative estimates of the potential economic and employment impacts of renewable energy self-sufficiency. The study aims to make generalizations on a regional, or even national level, and to give directions for future research. This paper analyses direct monetary values and employment impacts in two regions, in a theoretical situation where all energy is produced by renewables from the respective region. Renewable energy, especially utilization of existing but presently unused resources, can play an important role in vitalizing regional economies, especially in rural areas. The money spent on fossil energy could be kept circulating in the regional economy. The amount spent on energy in the research areas was almost (sic)4860 per capita per year, totalling more than 300 m annually. The existing data shows that there is the potential for self-sufficiency, or even surplus production. The results suggest that the regional economic impacts increase considerably if the region is self-sufficient in raw materials, including intermediates. On a larger scale, e.g., nationally, the loss of jobs in the fossil energy industry and the eventual variations within economies potentially based on renewable energy, will affect the overall impacts. There is at present insufficient scientific literature, knowledge or quantitative data for analysing these impacts thoroughly.This paper contributes to filling this gap. (C) 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Wen, Yanjun; Fang, Xiuqi; Liu, Yang; Li, Yikai (2019)
    Grain price volatility during historical periods is regarded as an important indicator of the impact of climate change on economic system, as well as a key link to adjust food security and social stability. The present study used the wheat prices in Baoding Prefecture, China, during 1736-1850 to explore connections between climatic transition and grain price anomalies in the North China Plain. The main findings were as follows: (1) The grain price change showed an apparent correspondence with climatic transition. The period 1781-1820 was a transition phase, with more extremes and decreased precipitations when the climate shifted from a warm phase to a cold one. Corresponding with the climatic transition, the grain price during 1781-1820 was characterized by that the mean of the original grain price series was significantly higher (lower) than the previous (later) phase, and the variance and anomaly amplitude of the detrended grain price series was the highest during 1736-1850. (2) The correspondence between grain price extremes and drought events occurred in phases. Five grain price extremes occurred following drought events during 1781-1810, while extreme droughts were the direct cause of the grain price spike during 1811-1820. (3) Social stability affected by climate change also played an important role in the grain price spike between 1811 and 1820. Paralleling the pathway of "precipitation-grain production-grain price", climate change could have an impact on grain price via the pathway of "precipitation-grain production-grain price-famine-uprising-grain price", as shown during the Tianli Uprising in 1813. These findings could contribute to an improved understanding of the interaction between climate change and human society during the historical period.
  • Herzon, I.; Birge, T.; Allen, B.; Povellato, A.; Vanni, F.; Hart, K.; Radley, G.; Tucker, G.; Keenleyside, C.; Oppermann, R.; Underwood, E.; Poux, X.; Beaufoy, G.; Prazan, J. (2018)
    Increased use of annual payments to land managers for ecological outcomes indicates a growing interest in exploring the potential of this approach. In this viewpoint, we drew on the experiences of all schemes paying for biodiversity outcomes/results on agricultural land operating in the EU and EFTA countries with the aim of reviewing the decisive elements of the schemes' design and implementation as well as the challenges and opportunities of adopting a results-based approach. We analysed the characteristics of results-based schemes using evidence from peer-reviewed literature, technical reports, scheme practitioners and experts in agri-environment-climate policy. We developed a typology of the schemes and explored critical issues influencing the feasibility and performance of results-based schemes. The evidence to date shows that there are at least 11 advantages to the results-based approach not found in management-based schemes with similar objectives, dealing with environmental efficiency, farmers' participation and development of local biodiversity-based projects. Although results-based approaches have specific challenges at every stage of design and implementation, for many of these the existing schemes provide potential solutions. There is also some apprehension about trying a results-based approach in Mediterranean, central and eastern EU Member States. We conclude that there is clear potential to expand the approach in the European Union for the Rural Development programming period for 2021-2028. Nevertheless, evidence is needed about the approach's efficiency in delivering conservation outcomes in the long term, its additionality, impact on the knowledge and attitudes of land managers and society at large, development of ways of rewarding the achievement of actual results, as well as its potential for stimulating innovative grassroots solutions.
  • Merikoski, Paula (2021)
    This article discusses hospitality towards asylum seekers as a political and contentious act. Accommodating asylum seekers in local homes is one of the pro-asylum mobilisations that emerged across Europe following the 'summer of migration'. Based on interviews with local hosts in Finland, this article demonstrates that offering accommodation is often motivated by an explicit mistrust in state asylum policies and a will to make a statement in support of the right to asylum. Home accommodation challenges the norm of housing asylum seekers in reception centres, isolated from the rest of society. Thus, it provides valuable social and spatial resources in the struggle for asylum. Departing from the understanding that questions of asylum and home are inherently political, and following feminist citizenship theorisation that connects the domestic with the political, this article and the concept contentious hospitality contribute to challenging the discursive division between public and private.