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Dpt of Forest Sciences
P.O. Box 27
(Latokartanonkaari 7)
FI-00014 University of Helsinki

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Department of Forest Sciences

The Department of Forest Sciences conducts internationally renowned research in forest sciences and provides highest level education based on the research. The aim of the department’s multidisciplinary activities is to promote the ecologically, economically and socially sustainable use of forests and peatland.

Disciplines of the department are Forest Economics and Marketing, Forest Ecology and Management, and Biotechnology.

The Department of Forest Sciences, one of the four departments at the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, is located on the Viikki Campus.

Värriö research station 50 years

The research station was founded in 1967 to study animals, but 25 years later the main research focus changed to study the interaction between forests and the atmosphere as SMEAR I station was built.

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Wood-based building sector requires focus on consumer needs and efficient networking

University of Helsinki launches a new research project focusing on consumer needs and development of innovative business networks.

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NOVA-BOVA network cooperation for an intensive course
“An Introduction to Ecosystem Service Theory and Practices”

A NOVA-funded course “An Introduction to Ecosystem Service Theory and Practices” took place from the 31st October to the 4th of November 2016, hosted by the Latvia University of Agriculture in Jelgava. The course was organized in cooperation between the University of Copenhagen, University of Helsinki and Latvia University of Agriculture.

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Doctoral dissertation: Animal-vehicle collisions - from knowledge to mitigation

Milla Niemi, MMM will defend the doctoral dissertation entitled "Animal-vehicle collisions - from knowledge to mitigation" , on 1 April 2016 at 12:15 at B-building, Ls B2, Latokartanonkaari 7.

The dissertation will be published in the series Dissertationes Forestales. The dissertation is also available in electronic form through the E-thesis service.

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Doctoral dissertation: "Heterobasidion annosum sensu stricto Pathogenesis: Bioinformatic and Functional Study of Cerato-platanin Family Proteins"

Hongxin Chen will defend the doctoral dissertation entitled "Heterobasidion annosum sensu stricto Pathogenesis: Bioinformatic and Functional Study of Cerato-platanin Family Proteins" in Lecture Hall B2, Forest Sciences building, Viikki (Latokartanonkaari 7), on November 6th 2015, at 12 noon. Professor Michael Thon, University of Salamanca, Spain, will serve as the opponent, and Professor Fred O. Asiegbu as the custos.

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Seminar on October 7th: How can University Contribute to Nordic Bioeconomy?

Society expects a lot of bioeconomy, but what do the operators of bioeconomy expect from the University? AGFOREE doctoral programme organizes a seminar on the research and teaching needs of bioeconomy. Invited speakers are Ilkka Hämälä (Metsä Fibre) Eeva Hellström (Sitra) and Leif Gustavsson (Linnaeus University, Sweden).

Seminar is open for all!

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Doctoral dissertation: ”In Silico Genomics of Fungal Oxidoreductase Genes”

Oxidoreductases are found in all living organisms and play essential roles in housekeeping, perception of environmental stress, plant-pathogen interactions, defense reactions, and pathogenicity.

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Doctoral dissertation: ”Use of remotely sensed auxiliary data for improving sample-based forest inventories”

Forests are demanded for a wide range of ecosystem services, such as recreation, biodiversity, sinks of carbon dioxide in the mitigation of climate change, and an increasing number of raw materials in society's transition towards a bio-based economy. The management of forests for all these – often conflicting – objectives is non-trivial and accurate information is needed for making appropriate management and policy decisions.

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Doctoral dissertation: ”Towards an enhanced understanding of airborne LiDAR measurements of forest vegetation”

Airborne laser scanning has contributed to considerable improvements in the mapping of forest resources during the last two decades. However, users are always seeking for more accurate information and reduced acquisition costs. Gaining understanding of the measurement process of the sensors, and of the effects of vegetation and sensor characteristics on the measurements is essential in developing new interpretation methods and better sensors.

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Doctoral dissertation: "Environmental Impact of Using Phlebiopsis gigantea in Stump Treatment Against Heterobasidion annosum sensu lato and Screening Root Endophytes to Identify Other Novel Control Agents"

The saprotrophic fungus Phlebiopsis gigantea has for several years been used as a biocontrol agent against H. annosum s.l. in spruce and pine stumps. The intensive use of a biocontrol, P. gigantea, might disturb the microbial communities in wood stumps. Understanding the consequences on other wood microbes of the long-term application of P. gigantea to living wood tissues would be important for gaining knowledge of the biocontrol effect on the microbial environment in the stumps.

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Seminar: GREEN ECONOMY AND BIOECONOMY: WHICH WAY TO GO? 'The role of forests, agriculture and land use in shaping future development agendas'

In this seminar we will discuss the similarities and differences between these two concepts in the context of future development agendas. A panel discussion is organized after the experts' speeches. The panellists include representatives from Finnish Universities, the Finnish Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Kasetsart University (Thailand), and National University of Laos. More information can be found in VITRI's blog pages ( or directly the program at (

Date: Wednesday, August 19, 2015 Time: 09:00-15:30 Venue: Infocenter Korona (LH-2), University of Helsinki, Viikinkaari 11, Helsinki

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Open position: Professor in international policy

The professorship is within the major of Forest Economics and Marketing. The international research orientation includes analysis and evaluation of processes, programs, instruments and impacts of international forest and related policies. The position also focuses on enhancing the interaction between research, policy and decision-making. A significant share of the students is from abroad and they study in the English-language Master's Degree Programme of the Department.

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European mixed forests for multiple benefits

A meeting in June 23, 2015 of the EU Cost Action "European Mixed Forests" will present recent research on ecosystem services and policies concerning mixed forests in different European countries. The one-day meeting contains 13 presentations concerning mixed forests management, ecosystem services, climate change and social impacts. The meeting is hosted by the Department of Forest Sciences, Viikki Campus, and it is open to interested participants upon email registration.

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Myanmar delegation visited VITRI

A delegation from the University of Forestry (Myanmar) visited VITRI to discuss potentials forms of cooperation in particularly capacity building and curricular improvements.

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International Day of Forests on 21 March

Climate change is subjecting our planet to unsustainable pressures. Forests and trees trap and store carbon as they grow – standing at the frontline against climate change. Join us in celebrating the International Day of Forests on 21 March.

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Scientists unlock the genome of the only biocontrol fungus commonly used against the conifer root and butt rot pathogen

Protection measures against Heterobasidion spp. have been focused on preventing germination and growth of the fungi after spore deposition. Over the last 50 years a large number of commercially produced compounds have been tested as stump protectants.

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How can large-scale forest inventories be improved?

The results of a study in the department of Forest Sciences would be important for the development of forest inventories to meet the requirements for forest information from the global conventions.

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The 21st Annual Conference of EAERE will be held in Helsinki

Main conference themes include the economics of climate change and intergenerational issues, the economics of natural resources, economic growth and development, nonmarket valuation and market failures and regulation.

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Gases can escape the xylem during freezing

Winter embolism is a major stress for trees of cold climates. While freezing occurs, gas bubbles are formed in the water-conducting structures, as gases are not soluble in ice.

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