Browsing by Subject "SUSTAINABILITY"

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  • Kallio, Galina (2020)
    Questions of value are central to understanding alternative practices of food exchange. This study introduces a practice-based approach to value that challenges the dominant views, which capture value as either an input for or an outcome of practices of exchange (value as values, standards, or prices). Building on a longitudinal ethnographic study on food collectives, I show how value, rather than residing in something that people share, or in something that objects have, is an ideal target that continuously unfolds and evolves in action. I found that people organized their food collectives around pursuing three kinds of value-ideals, namely good food, good price and good community. These value-ideals became reproduced in food collectives through what I identified as valuing modes, by which people evaluated the goodness of food, prices and community. My analysis revealed that, while participating in food collectives in order to pursue their value-ideals, people were likely to have differing reasons for pursuing them and tended to attach different meanings to the same value-ideal. I argue that understanding how value as an ideal target is reproduced through assessing and assigning value (valuing modes) is essential in further explorations of the formation of value and in better understanding the dynamics of organizing alternative practices of food exchange.
  • D'amato, Dalia; Gaio, Marco; Semenzin, Elena (2020)
    The emergence of politically driven bioeconomy strategies worldwide calls for considering the ecological issues associated with bio-based products. Traditionally, life cycle analysis (LCA) approaches are key tools used to assess impacts through product life cycles, but they present limitations regarding the accounting of multiple ecosystem service-related issues, at both the land-use and supply chain levels. Based on a systematic review of empirical articles, this study provides insights on using LCA assessments to account for ecosystem service-related impacts in the context of bioeconomy activities. We address the following research questions: what is the state of the art of the literature performing LCA assessments of forest-based bioeconomy activities, including the temporal distribution, the geographic areas and products/processes at study, and the approaches and methods used? 2. Which impacts and related midpoints are considered by the reviewed studies and what types of ecosystem service- related information do they bear? Out of over 600 articles found through the Scopus search, 155 were deemed relevant for the review. The literature focuses on North-America and Europe. Most of the articles assessed the environmental impact of lower-value biomass uses. Climate change was assessed in over 90% of the studies, while issues related to ozone, eutrophication, human toxicity, resource depletion, acidification, and environmental toxicity were assessed in 40% to 60% of the studies. While the impact categories accounted for in the reviewed LCA studies bear information relevant to certain provisioning and regulating services, several ecosystem services (especially cultural ones) remain unaccounted for. The implications of our study are relevant for professionals working in the ecosystem services, circular bioeconomy, and/or LCA communities. (C) 2019 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
  • Korhonen, Jaana; Giurca, Alexandru; Brockhaus, Maria; Toppinen, Anne (2018)
    To foster innovativeness for supporting (forest-based) bioeconomy development, participation in decision-making and interaction between diverse actors become a necessary precondition for designing and implementing transition policies. However, who forms the emerging policy networks, and which policy beliefs are promoted? Based on data from a national online survey, we performed a quantitative social network analysis to investigate emerging social structures and policy beliefs in the context of the Finnish forest-based bioeconomy. Our explorative analysis shows that research, governmental, and industrial organizations mainly constitute the Finnish forest-based bioeconomy network. Actors primarily exchange information, and most key organizations report high levels of trust among each other. However, the network structure is rather closed. This raises concerns about equal benefit sharing and the inclusiveness of concerned actors. We discuss the implication of this network structure for enabling new innovations. Finally, we present the key aspects and drivers of business as usual, and suggest an option for or a more transformative change in the Finnish forest-based bioeconomy.
  • Lommi, Henri; Turkkila, Miikka; Juuti, Kalle (Suomen ainedidaktinen tutkimusseura, 2019)
    Suomen ainedidaktisen tutkimusseuran julkaisuja, Ainedidaktisia tutkimuksia
  • Ruuskanen, Taina; Vehkamäki, Hanna; Riuttanen, Laura; Lauri, Antti (2018)
    Transferable skills, such as learning skills as well as oral and written communication skills, are needed by today’s experts. The learning of transferable skills was studied during a multidisciplinary two-week, research-oriented intensive course in atmospheric sciences. Students were assessed on their experience of learning data analysis, writing reports and articles, oral presentation, learning and teaching, as well as project and time management skills and the importance of learning these transferable skills in the beginning and at the end of the course. The learning outcomes were constructively aligned with the course and it supported the learning of transferable skills needed by researchers working with multidisciplinary research questions. The methods of teaching were group work, data analysis of real scientific questions and real scientific data, a few expert lectures, discussions with experts and peer-support, and the course evaluation that was based on the groups’ oral presentations and a written report. The groups consisted of seven to eight students and four to six assistants who were working side-by-side for the period of the course. Students considered data analysis, including the formulation of research questions, as the most important transferable skill of the course and stated that it was also what they learned the most. We conclude that the students felt that working with real scientific questions and data in multidisciplinary groups supports the learning of transferable skills. The findings suggest that the students may have learned transferable skills from peers, assistants, and teachers while working in small groups of students in different stages of their studies. The study was conducted from student feedback from one course only, but we have observed while organizing over 50 similar courses that working on real scientific questions and data in a multidisciplinary and multicultural course has been motivating for both the teachers and the students. We recommend this method to be used by research groups who are training the future generation of researchers and experts in atmospheric sciences and other fields.
  • Holmgren, Sara; D'amato, Dalia; Giurca, Alexandru (2020)
    This review article examines how social science literature co-produces various imaginaries of forest-based bioeconomy transformations and pathways for reaching desired ends. Based on an analysis of 59 research articles, we find that despite a growing number of social sciences studies on the forest-based bioeconomy, much of the research tends to replicate a bioeconomy imaginary articulated in EU and national bioeconomy policies and strategies. Accordingly, the research primarily reproduces a weak approach to sustainability, which prioritize economic growth and competitiveness. Expectations are largely directed at national and regional corporate interests and forest industrial renewal, while the state has a supportive rather than restricting role. We discuss the findings against the role of social sciences, and conclude that social science scholars may adopt various strategies if interested in opening up forest-based policy debates and offer alternative imaginaries of sustainable bioeconomy transformations.
  • Anttonen, Markku; Lammi, Minna; Mykkänen, Juri; Repo, Petteri (2018)
    The Triple Helix concept of innovation systems holds that consensus space among industry, government and university is required to bring together their competences to achieve enhanced economic and social development on a systemic scale. In line with this argument, this article analyses empirically how the concept of circular economy is conceived in the institutional spheres of "industry", "government" and "university". Innovation systems are constantly being reconstructed through knowledge production and communication, which is reflected in how concepts develop in the different spheres. By applying natural language processing tools to key contributions from each of the three spheres (the "Triple Helix"), it is shown that, although institutional backgrounds do contribute to differing conceptualizations of circular economy, there is a substantial but limited conceptual consensus space, which, according to the Triple Helix, should open new opportunities for innovations. The consensus space shared across the three spheres focuses on materials and products and sees circular economy as a way to create new resources, businesses and products from waste. The industry sphere highlights business opportunities on global scale, which are also evident in the government sphere. The government sphere connects circular economy to waste-related innovation policies targeted at industrial renewal, economic growth, investments and jobs. The university sphere, in turn, focuses on production and environmental issues, waste and knowledge, and is rather distinct from the two other spheres. The importance of the differing conceptions of circular economy is based on the logic of Triple Helix systems. Accordingly, sufficient consensus between the Triple Helix spheres can advance the application of the concept of circular economy beyond the individual spheres to achieve systemic changes.
  • Matschoss, Kaisa; Pietilä, Maria; Rask, Mikko; Suni, Tanja (2020)
    Co-creation principles have become prominent in the scientific disciplines that aim to respond to global sustainability challenges especially in the global south. This paper analyses a co-creation pilot of global change research in the novel context of a Nordic country, Finland. The pilot was organised to learn how to create a future agenda for a complex and transdisciplinary research field of global change. This paper analyses its conceptualisation in Finland, how did the series of engagement events increase the capacities of participants and how did the process contribute to a change towards a new, societally responsible way of co-creating global change research. The study found that co-creation suits well for the translation of important societal questions into global research agendas and for networking actors to cocreation activities. Based on the study, we argue that co-creation offers a socially acceptable approach to address socially critical topics to design transdisciplinary social and sustainability research.
  • Kokko, Sirpa; Räisänen, Riikka (2019)
    In 2013, the UNESCO convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage was ratified by Finland, and its implementation has continued since. During this process, the discussions on the role of craft tradition have concerned the specific features of Finnish craft culture. One recognised aspect is the role of craft education in Finnish basic education. This article discusses the role of craft education in sustaining and developing textile craft traditions from the perspective of craft teacher education. The student teachers' portfolios from two courses were examined to determine how students applied traditional crafts and craft techniques in individual work and in teaching practices. The findings suggest that the way the students applied crafts traditions was often related to their own motivation, experiences, and ideation. Some of the topics in these two courses guided them to apply craft traditions but often it was their own choice to consider traditional aspect. Following the guidelines of the Finnish Curriculum for Basic Education, Finnish craft teacher education does not particularly focus on craft traditions. Taking the targets of safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage seriously, more effort is required when educating future teachers about craft traditions and the ways to sustain and develop them further.
  • Laakso, Senja; Berg, Annukka; Annala, Mikko (2017)
    Societies around the world are faced with wicked problems such as climate change. In this context, experimental governance approaches have emerged as tools with potential utility in both top-down and bottom-up governance efforts. At the same time, experimental governance has gained momentum as a desirable policy goal in its own right. As the various experimental approaches differ in their origins and serve different purposes, there is a need to organize the field. If more experimental development processes are desired, what can be expected from certain kinds of experiments? How can the field be organised in a way that benefits those designing, conducting, and evaluating experimental governance processes? In attempting to answer these questions, we carried out a meta-study of 25 articles on experimental climate governance. On the basis of the results and the previous work on experiments, we have built a 'triangle model of experimental governance' that proposes both vertical and horizontal dynamics within and between different functions and uses of experiments. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Holmberg, Maria; Aalto, Tuula; Akujarvi, Anu; Arslan, Ali Nadir; Bergstrom, Irina; Bottcher, Kristin; Lahtinen, Ismo; Makela, Annikki; Markkanen, Tiina; Minunno, Francesco; Peltoniemi, Mikko; Rankinen, Katri; Vihervaara, Petteri; Forsius, Martin (2019)
    Forests regulate climate, as carbon, water and nutrient fluxes are modified by physiological processes of vegetation and soil. Forests also provide renewable raw material, food, and recreational possibilities. Rapid climate warming projected for the boreal zone may change the provision of these ecosystem services. We demonstrate model based estimates of present and future ecosystem services related to carbon cycling of boreal forests. The services were derived from biophysical variables calculated by two dynamic models. Future changes in the biophysical variables were driven by climate change scenarios obtained as results of a sample of global climate models downscaled for Finland, assuming three future pathways of radiative forcing. We introduce continuous monitoring on phenology to be used in model parametrization through a webcam network with automated image processing features. In our analysis, climate change impacts on key boreal forest ecosystem services are both beneficial and detrimental. Our results indicate an increase in annual forest growth of about 60% and an increase in annual carbon sink of roughly 40% from the reference period (1981-2010) to the end of the century. The vegetation active period was projected to start about 3 weeks earlier and end ten days later by the end of the century compared to currently. We found a risk for increasing drought, and a decrease in the number of soil frost days. Our results show a considerable uncertainty in future provision of boreal forest ecosystem services.
  • Iotova, Violeta; Schalin-Jäntti, Camilla; Bruegmann, Petra; Broesamle, Manuela; Bratina, Natasa; Tillmann, Vallo; Hiort, Olaf; Pereira, Alberto M. (2021)
    Objective: The European Reference Network on Rare Endocrine Conditions (Endo-ERN), operational since 2017, consists of 71 health care providers (HCPs) in 19 EU member states. Our objective was to assess education and knowledge on rare endocrine conditions. Design and methods: A survey was developed and sent through the DIGIT-EUROSURVEY system to all Endo-ERN HCPs. Results: Response rate was 55% (n = 146), 95% physicians, 58% > 20 years of experience, 96% academics. Largest knowledge gaps were reported for the transition and neonatal ages, and for the GPs. Less than 50% of HCPs had structured educational rare diseases (RD) plans, while 86% used RD specific guidelines. HCPs would share educational materials within Endo-ERN (74%), and participate in an accreditation model (85%). E-learning portals of the endocrine scientific societies used 58 % (ESPE) and 64% (ESE). Most participants (90%) regarded Endo-ERN coordinated educational activities (annual meetings slots, webinars, etc.) as highly important and supported a common educational platform. Social media was perceived as important for educating patients (86%) but not for physicians (36%). Seventy-five % had developed patient education materials; only 31% had specific children's materials, and by-country avail ability varied from 0 to 100%. Respondents provided newly diagnosed patients with their own material in the national language (81%); referred to advocacy groups (68%), and relevant online sources (50%). Respondents believed the European Commission should fund education through Endo-ERN. Conclusion: Identified knowledge gaps in rare endocrine disorders set the basis for fast catch-up through collaboration, alignment with patients' needs, and further development of existing and newly developed educational resources.
  • D'Amato, D.; Rekola, M.; Wan, M.; Cai, D.; Toppinen, A. (2017)
    This paper addresses the current research void on local community views of changes in ecosystem services associated with rapid land use transformation in the context of plantation-based forestry. This interview-based study, conducted in southern China, aims at assessing the perspectives of local communities of: 1) the effects of Eucalyptus industrial plantations on selected ecosystem services and on local development; and 2) opportunities for future community livelihood development, based on the relations with the government and with forest industry operating locally. We analysed data from semi-structured interviews with 70 villagers for their views on changes in ecosystem services after the establishment of plantations, and their future expectations on the local livelihood development. Most interviewees mentioned some negative development on environmental quality after the establishment of the industrial plantations, especially on soil and water. Furthermore, the reduced productivity of cropland surrounding industrial plantations, coupled with other financial drivers, induced several villagers to switch from agricultural crops to household plantations. In the absence of destructive typhoons, household plantations can provide owners more free time, higher income, while industrial plantations provided some employment opportunities. Interviewees' expectations for the future included receiving financial support and capacity building for household plantations and crops, support to local roads and schools, and higher employment opportunities. Some interviewees suggested that solutions should be implemented for improving degraded water quality, while others suggested reducing forestry operations. Even though being highly context-specific, our findings open up the discussion about the further community development opportunities in the context of plantation forestry. In particular, the potential of value sharing mechanisms between the private sector and the local communities should be further studied. (C) 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
  • Kuittinen, Matti; Hautamaki, Ranja; Tuhkanen, Eeva-Maria; Riikonen, Anu; Ariluoma, Mari (2021)
    Purpose Currently, no clear guidance exists for ISO and EN standards of calculating, verifying, and reporting the climate impacts of plants, mulches, and soils used in landscape design and construction. In order to optimise the potential of ecosystem services in the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions in the built environment, we unequivocally propose their inclusion when assessing sustainability. Methods We analysed the life cycle phases of plants, soils, and mulches from the viewpoint of compiling standard-based Environmental Product Declarations. In comparison to other construction products, the differences of both mass and carbon flows were identified in these products. Results Living and organic products of green infrastructure require an LCA approach of their own. Most importantly, if conventional life cycle guidance for Environmental Product Declarations were to be followed, over time, the asymmetric mass and carbon flows would lead to skewed conclusions. Moreover, the ability of plants to reproduce raises additional questions for allocating environmental impacts. Conclusions We present a set of recommendations that are required for compiling Environmental Product Declarations for the studied products of green infrastructure. In order to enable the quantification of the climate change mitigation potential of these products, it is essential that work for further development of LCA guidance be mandated.
  • Räsänen, Aleksi; Nygren, Anja; Monge Monge, Adrian Antonio; Käkönen, Mira; Kanninen, Markku; Juhola, Sirkku (2018)
    Land use changes have been recognized to have considerable impacts on water; and vice versa, changes in water use and governance may have implications on land use and governance. This study analyzes recent land use/land cover (LULC) changes, and how changes in land use and water governance are perceived to affect land use and water-related risks in three case-study areas exposed to frequent flooding and inadequate or deteriorating water quality. The areas studied included the Vantaa basin in Finland, a section of the Grijalva basin in Mexico, and the Lower Xe Bang Fai basin in Laos. We show how there are complex and context-specific interrelationships between land use, water governance, and water-related risks in each study area. In a remote sensing analysis of LULC changes during the past 30 years, we found that LULC changes have been the most dramatic in Xe Bang Fai, Laos in the form of expanding agriculture and built-up areas; however, there has also been an expansion of built-up areas in the two other sites. According to our stakeholder scenario workshop data, analysis of policy documents and field visits, the nexus between land, water and risks is recognized to some extent in each study area. There have been modest shifts toward more integrated land use and water governance in Vantaa and Grijalva, while the integrated governance seems to have been most absent in Xe Bang Fai. Tighter integration of land and water policies is needed in all the three cases to manage the land use changes in a way that their effects on water-related risks will be minimized.
  • Myers, Rodd; Rutt, Rebecca L.; McDermott, Constance; Maryudi, Ahmad; Acheampong, Emmanuel; Camargo, Marisa; Cam, Hoang (2020)
    Timber legality trade restrictions and verification are a bundle of contemporary mechanisms triggered by global concerns about forest degradation and deforestation. The European Union Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade initiative is a significant effort to not only screen out illegal timber and wood products from the EU, but also support trading partner countries to improve their legality definitions and verification processes. But by using bilateral agreements (Voluntary Partnership Agreements) as a key mechanism, the EU legitimizes trade partner nation-states as the authority to decide what is legal. We engage in a theoretical debate about the complexities of the meaning of legality, and then analyze empirical data collected from interviews in Ghana, Indonesia, Vietnam and Europe with policy, civil society and industry actors to understand how different actors understand legality. We find hegemonic notions of Westphalian statehood at the core of 'global' notions of legality and often contrast with local understandings of legality. Non-state actors understand these hegemonic notions of legality as imposed upon them and part of a colonial legacy. Further, notions of legality that fail to conform with hegemonic understandings are readily framed by nation- states as immoral or criminal. We emphasize the importance of understanding these framings to elucidate the embedded assumptions about what comprises legality within assemblages of global actors.
  • Weiss, Gerhard; Hansen, Eric; Ludvig, Alice; Nybakk, Erlend; Toppinen, Anne (2021)
    Innovation in the forest sector is a growing research interest and within this field, there is a growing attention for institutional, policy and societal dimensions and particular when it comes to the question of how to support innovativeness in the sector. This Special Issue therefore focuses on governance aspects, relating to and bridging business and political-institutional-societal levels. This includes social/societal factors, goals and implications that have recently been studied under the label of social innovation. Furthermore, the emergence of bioeconomy as a paradigm and policy goal has become a driver for a variety of innovation processes on company and institutional levels. Our article provides a tentative definition of & ldquo;innovation governance & rdquo; and attempts a stateof-art review of innovation governance research in the forest sector. For structuring the research field, we propose to distinguish between organizational/managerial, policy or innovation studies. For the forestry sector, specifically, we suggest to distinguish between studies focusing on (i) innovative governance of forest management and forest goods and services; on (ii) the governance of innovation processes as such, or (iii) on specific (transformational) approaches that may be derived from combined goals such as innovation governance for sustainability, regional development, or a bioeconomy. Studies in the forest sector are picking up new trends from innovation research that increasingly include the role of societal changes and various stakeholders such as civil society organizations and users. They also include public-private partnership models or participatory governance. We finally should not only look in how far research approaches from outside are applied in the sector but we believe that the sector could contribute much more to our general scientific knowledge on ways for a societal transformation to sustainability.
  • Vihemäki, Heini; Toppinen, Anne; Toivonen, Ritva (2020)
    Intermediaries can potentially help reduce institutional lock-ins that slow down sustainability transitions by influencing policy processes, because of their connectedness and often high level of legitimacy. In this paper, we analysed intermediaries seeking to accelerate the diffusion of wooden multi-storey construction (WMC) in Finland, their roles and engagement in policy processes. Increasing the use of wood in construction has high policy support nationally, backed up with climate and forest policies. Yet, market diffusion has been slow. The data consist of qualitative interviews of intermediaries and other actors, participatory observation and a review of secondary materials. The results reveal a complex set of intermediaries, including systemic, niche and regime-based ones. The intermediaries are characterised by multiple goals, partly overlapping roles and means of policy influencing. The low degree of coordination among the intermediaries and the differences in their agenda for transition are critical challenges which limit the effectiveness of their actions.
  • Repo, Juha Petteri; Anttonen, Markku Tapio; Mykkänen, Juri; Lammi, Minna Maaria (2018)
    The concept of circular economy has become a catchphrase for describing redesign of economies and industries towards better sustainability. The consideration of consumers holds a prominent role in the concept, yet consumers‟ concerns and hopes are not well accounted for. This article takes a forward-looking approach to the relationship between consumers and policies on circular economy. It analyses an extensive and systematically collected corpus of European citizen visions on desirable and sustainable futures from this perspective, and compares the outcomes to newly adopted circular economy policies in Europe. The article argues that European policies on circular economy should increasingly connect to energy and climate issues as well as social topics, if they are to build congruence between citizen and policy understandings, and thereby raise public acceptance for the concept.
  • Wolfram, Marc; van der Heijden, Jeroen; Juhola, Sirkku Kaarina; Patterson, James (2019)
    Over the past decade, diverse urban governance innovations and experiments have emerged with the declared aim to foster climate change mitigation and adaptation, involving actors at multiple levels and scales. This urban turn in environmental governance has been accompanied by normative claims and high expectations regarding a leading role of cities in coping with climate change. However, while time pressures for effective action are growing, little is known about the social learning processes involved in such urban climate governance innovations, and what they actually contribute to achieve the required transformations in urban systems. Therefore, this special issue presents eight selected papers that explore learning in urban climate governance practices in a variety of local, national and international contexts. Their findings point to a more ambiguous role of these practices as they tend to support incremental adjustments rather than deeper social learning for radical systemic change. Against this backdrop we propose a heuristic distinguishing basic modes and sources in governance learning that aims to facilitate future empirical research and comparison, thus filling a critical theory gap. Using this framework for interpretation illustrates that urban climate governance learning urgently requires more openness, parallel processes, exogenous sources, as well as novel meta-learning practices.