Study Sites


Heikki Setälä,
Professor in Urban Ecosystem Studies

phone: +358 9 191 20312

Department of Environmental Sciences, Lahti
University of Helsinki
Niemenkatu 73
FIN-15140 Lahti

Welcome to our website

Our research interests cover a wide range of topics in ecology and environmental sciences. We study forest and grassland ecosystems in natural and human-dominated settings. Urban ecosystem ecology occupies an important part of our research activities. Our research mainly focuses on soils – their decomposer food webs and the activities carried out by them. Soil-derived ecosystem services, i.e. the processes by which the environment produces resources that humans often take for granted, such as clean water and detoxification of harmful substances, lie at the core of several research projects. Research questions dealing with both basic and applied ecology are tackled in our research group.

As for species populations, ecosystems are threatened by global environmental and climate change. Of these large-scale environmental alterations our research focuses on (i) land-use change, (ii) habitat fragmentation and, at a local scale, on (iii) environmental pollution. We aim at getting a mechanistic understanding of the factors giving rise to the changes in community composition and ecosystem functioning. When relevant, we apply interdisciplinary (socio-economical-ecological) research methods to mitigate the often negative consequences of such alterations.
We hope you will find the following pages interesting. For additional information please contact us