Maria Ojala starts as a professor of Socio-ecological resilience in FRONT research programme

Maria Ojala is starting as a professor of Socio-ecological Resilience in FRONT research programme at the University of Oulu in August.
Professor Maria Ojala smiling

We are happy to welcome Professor Maria Ojala to our research programme as a professor of Socio-ecological Resilience. Professor Ojala has already taken part in our research programme´s activities as she visited us in April as the discussant for Professor Arjen Wals´s ResilienceTalks lecture.

Maria Ojala is currently working as an Associate Professor in psychology (docent) and research director (shared responsibility) for CESSS (Center for Environmental and Sustainability Social Science) at Örebro University, Sweden. She has also worked as an Assistant Professor at the Department of Education, Uppsala University.

"I am looking forward to working in such a strong and multidisciplinary research environment as FRONT. It will be an exciting challenge to develop this research environment together with my new colleagues! It will also be very interesting to work with young people in Finland, especially the northern part of Finland, to explore how they relate to sustainability problems, like climate change, and to identify factors that can help them be active citizens without compromising mental wellbeing”, says Ojala.

Ojala focuses on how young people learn about and relate to sustainability

Ojalas’s research concerns how young people relate to, and learn about, sustainability issues with a specific focus on emotional reactions to climate change. She has focused on hope, worry, coping, climate-change engagement, mental wellbeing, and implications for education and climate-change communication.

Ojala has conducted both qualitative and quantitative studies and written theoretical articles about these issues. She has led several research projects financed by all the three Swedish research councils. Ojala has extensive experience of working with actors outside the university sector. She regularly gives popular scientific presentations and writes scientific texts. Her research has gained interest in international media like New York Times, Wired, Die Zeit, Los Angeles Times, and BBC.

Read more about ResilienceTalks seminar with Professor Arjen Wals that Maria Ojala visited as the discussant here.

Last updated: 15.5.2024