Institution information Contact Information

Viikki Tropical Resources Institute
Dpt of Forest Sciences
P.O. Box 27
(Latokartanonkaari 7)
FI-00014 University of Helsinki
Tel. +358 9 1911
Fax +358 9 191 58100




Viikki Tropical Resources Institute (VITRI)

The Viikki Tropical Resources Institute (VITRI) that forms part of the Department of Forest Sciences provides academic training and carries out research on forests and related natural resources in tropical and developing countries. VITRI staff also undertakes national and international assignments related to tropical forest management as well as environmental and forest policy.










Public seminar: REDD+: Dead or alive? The role of forests and land use in climate negotiations [ Updated! ]

Viikki Tropical Resources Institute has the pleasure to invite you to the 2014 Public Seminar on "REDD+: Dead or Alive? The role of forests and land use in climate negotiations". As a part of Helsinki Summer School 2014, this years' seminar focuses on REDD+-theme and addresses the current situation with high-level guest speakers from various organizations.


Date: Wednesday 13 August 2014
Time:  09:00 - 15:30
Venue: Small Hall (Pieni Juhlasali), Fabianinkatu 33

Participation is free of charge but registration is requested via this link. The poster of the seminar can be seen here and the detailed program here.



Guest lecture by Assoc. Professor Sithong Thongmanivong

Dr. Sithong Thongmanivong is an Associate Professor in remote sensing, GIS and integrated land use planning at the Faculty of Forestry of the National University of Laos. He holds a PhD in Biology at the University of Vienna, a MSc in remote sensing and GIS from the Asian Institute of Technology and a BSc in forestry at Vientiane Forestry College. He is specialized in land use and land cover change assessment, community-based natural resource management and the interactions between socio-economic systems and the environment. Since 2009, Sithong Thongmanivong is Lao national coordinator for REDD program and coordinates CBNRM – IDRC Canada project in Laos. He is also national consultant in land use, forest management and governance projects supported by Danish and Canadian cooperation in Laos.

The title of his lecture is: An introduction to the Faculty of Forestry, National University of Laos and the Forestry sector in Laos

When: Wednesday, June 25, 14-16

Where: University of Helsinki, Viikki Campus, Latokartanonkaari 7, room K171 (B building)

You are all warmly welcome!

Prof. Thongmanivong presentation is available from the link



Guest lecture by Professor Fredrick Owino

Professor Fredrick Owino has a long career in forestry research and higher education in East Africa. He has served as the head of the Department of Forestry, University of Nairobi in the 1970’s, as the dean of the Faculty of Forest Resources and Wildlife Management of Moi University in the 1980’s, and as scientist at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) in the 1990’s. After that has accomplished a wide range of short-time consultancy assignments in several African countries, and served as negotiator for international agreements on forests. Professor Owino will be appointed as Honorary Doctor at the solemn conferment of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry later this week.

The title of his lecture is: Developing forest policy for the new nation of South Sudan

When: Wednesday, June 4, 14-16

Where: University of Helsinki, Viikki Campus, Lecture Hall B4

You are all warmly welcome!

Prof. Owino's presentation is available from the link



Ms. Monique Barbut, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD ) visits VITRI.

During her two-day mission to Finland, Ms. Monique Barbut, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD ) visited VITRI on April 2, 2014 to discuss with VITRI scientists on scientific issues related to the convention and on possibilities for cooperation between VITRI and UNCCD. She was accompanied by Ms. Satu Ravola (Program Management Officer of UNCCD) and by Mr. Tommi Vuorinen, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland (Finnish National Focal Point for UNCCD).








From left to right: Dr. Eshetu Yirdaw (VITRI), Ms. Satu Ravola (UNCCD), Dr. Fobissie Kalame (VITRI). Ms. Monique Barbut (UNCCD), Professor Markku Kanninen (VITRI), Mr. Tommi Vuorinen (Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland), Dr. Mohamed ElFadl (VITRI). Photo: Adrian Monge Monge



The Dept. of Forest Sciences and VITRI opened the registration for the field course in SE Asia 5-23 January 2015

Field course in the Mekong area (Laos and Thailand). Students attending field course should take TROP220 in period II, 2014. In case field course overlaps with other courses in period III, 2015, students have to agree with their respective teachers on how to compensate the missing lectures. Registration in WebOodi
Eligible as participants are BSc 3rd year, M.Sc. and doctoral students registered at the University of Helsinki, with preference given to those supervised or co-supervised at the Department of Forest Sciences and VITRI. Participants are selected based on their previous studies, especially in forest sciences with specialization in the tropics & developing countries, as well as issues related to tropical natural resource management or development studies; other relevant past experience or ongoing activities (such as M.Sc. thesis work) will be also considered.
Participants are expected to cover: the cost of their flight tickets, meals outside academic activities, own travel insurance (compulsory!), Visa costs (double entry visa to Thailand + single entry visa to Lao PDR).
Important! Prospective participants are urged to apply for personal scholarships. As part of HEI ICI FORMEB project, a maximum of 15 grants worth 600€ each are available for the participants. Grant application can be found at (link).
You can contact FORMEB coordinator Dipjoy Chakma (dipjoy.chakma[at] for further information.



Guest lecture by Dr. Peter Holmgren

Dr. Peter Holmgren is the Director General of the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), one of the fifteen international research centers of the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). Dr. Holmgren has been working with FAO since 1998 and from 2007 he has served as Director Climate, Energy and Tenure division at FAO.

The title of his lecture is: Redefining forestry for sustainable development

When: Wednesday, January 22, 14-16

Where: Lecture Hall B7, Viikki Campus, University of Helsinki

You are all warmly welcome!

The presentation can also be found here.