Founded in 1878, the Swedish Society for Anthropology and Geography (SSAG) has awarded the prestigious Vega medal to Professor of Geography Anssi Paasi from the University of Oulu on the basis of his scientific merit. In its explanatory memorandum, the society emphasises the importance of Paasi’s research for the critical renewal and expansion of political geography.
Archaeologists and geneticists of the University of Oulu found out that domesticated reindeer replaced wild reindeer at the Sámi offering places in Northern Finland in the 15th to 17th centuries. The research group analyzed archaeological reindeer bone finds from four Sámi offering places. The analyzed samples dated from the late 12th century to the 17th century.
Ageing female gorillas do not suffer from bone loss, i.e. osteoporosis, as their close relatives, humans. Osteoporosis refers to bone loss, in other words, a reduction in bone mass, and is a common disease especially in older women. The research result may be relevant when examining age-related diseases.
Digital business can be found in all sectors. Researchers at the University of Oulu analyse opportunities for digitalisation and help companies to develop a new business model. Their partners include the Port of Oulu, which is building a 5G local network with digital services.
Two new projects are promoting the revival of Nordic minority languages: translators of Meänkieli and Kven will be offered translator training for the first time, and Meänkieli will have its first corpus created. Niina Kunnas from the University of Oulu, who participates in the projects, tells us some more about the topic.
The University of Oulu collects information worldwide on the effects of the coronavirus crisis on people's everyday life. Experiencing the Pandemic project material will be used in a variety of disciplines, including in dealing with potential new crises.
The University of Oulu maintains the Saami Culture Archive, which has been keeping a record of life in the Saami area for over a century. The digitalisation of the archive materials has been supported by donations made to the university, and so now it is easier than ever to make use of the archive in research and teaching. With the help of students and researchers with skills in the Saami languages, the secrets of the archive are now also being opened up for use in multidisciplinary research in the northern regions.
The multidisciplinary GenZ profiling project of the University of Oulu begins to materialise when the tenure track assistant and associate professors selected in January begin their research activities. At the same time, the project objective of bringing human orientation to digitalisation is highlighted from the perspective of the different research fields.
In the 1940s, Finnish children were born in a land of forests and fields. More than half of the working-age population earned their living from agriculture and forestry. Of the entire population, 75 per cent lived in areas categorised as rural. By European standards, the Finnish society was urbanised late but at a rapid pace.
The American Association of Geographers (AAG), the largest international scientific organisation in the field of geography, has awarded the John Rooney Prize to Jarkko Saarinen, Professor of Geography of the University of Oulu.
According to a multidisciplinary study at the University of Oulu, contemporary Finns’ vertebrae have not grown in the same proportion to body size compared to people who lived 200–500 years ago. The smaller size of vertebrae may be linked to contemporary back problems.
Anssi Paasi, Professor of Geography at the University of Oulu, has been named Professor of the Year by the Finnish Union of University Professors. His appointment was announced at the Communicatio Academica event in Vaasa on 17 January 2020.
University of Oulu researchers found out together with their Nordic colleagues that reindeer supplementary feeding began in some areas already 800 years ago. Previously it has been unclear when supplementary feeding of the reindeer began.
Climate.now is a multidisciplinary study module that deals with the science of climate change and how to prevent it and adapt to it. The module is open to anyone who is interested and can be completed through extensive online resources.
Human activity has caused remarkable environmental impacts on the earth already thousands of years ago. The global history of land use was examined in a study which brought together more than 250 archaeologists from around the world. This is the first world-wide review on the long-term history of land use based on archaeological research.
Medical research has confirmed it, and now archaeologists have as well: forms of exercise that involve shaking and vibrations are the best for strengthening bones. The archaeological research carried out at the University of Oulu also found that exercise involving repeated vibrations combined with a larger muscle cross-sectional area is the most effective for strengthening bones.
Farmers who lived in Finland in the Middle Ages and the early Modern Age (1400–1700) made very versatile use of their environment by practising a mixed economy. Domestic animals grazed on natural pastures, and bunches of tree branches and lichen were collected for them as feed. In addition to farming and animal husbandry, residents of Northern Finland engaged in hunting and fishing.
Extensive international research reveals an interesting phenomenon in the increasing obesity among world population: the geography of body-mass index (BMI) appears to have changed radically over the last few decades. In 1985, urban men and women in the majority of the countries had a higher BMI than their rural counterparts. However, in approximately 30 years, the situation has practically been reversed.
Only products acquired from terrestrial environments were prepared in the oldest pottery vessels by the Stone Age hunter-gatherers of Finland and North-West Russia. Processing of aquatic products, like fish and seals, started only some five hundred years after the adoption of pottery technology.
Forms of digital healthcare, such as remote online therapies, are an effective response to the growing demand for healthcare services. Most doctors consider online therapies as an accepted way to provide treatment. Doctors believe they work well to complement early stage treatment but should not be the only option.
Researchers from the University of Oulu are involved in a large-scale international study, which shows that genetic factors partly explain risk behaviour. The effect of individual genes on risk behaviour is low, but the interaction of genes is significant.
Quality and equal education is one of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN. Professor of global education at the University of Oulu Elina Lehtomäki sheds light on the multi-level connection between education and sustainability.
The sustainability of tourism is one of the central themes under tourism geography at the Geography Research Unit at the University of Oulu. This multifaceted topic encompasses both ecological and societal perspectives.
The researchers in Oulu are pioneers in the tracing of Finnish disease history with the help of mummies. By studying the mummy of Nikolaus Rungius, a Vicar of the Kemi parish, Archaeologist Tiina Väre has discovered that the clergyman may have suffered from tuberculosis, obesity, and, according to the latest findings, gynecomastia.
School essays written in the autumn following the end of the Finnish Civil War offer a multi-dimensional insight into the battle of Tampere. However, the stories written by people with first-hand experience are overshadowed by the White winners’ interpretation, says Docent Marianne Junila, who has done long-term research on the subject.
University of Oulu researchers showed together with their Nordic colleagues that the use of Sámi offering sites began earlier than previously thought. New radiocarbon dates show that the use of these sites began more than thousand years ago.
It is only a few decades since many Finns became war refugees; there are still people among us whose past is marked by forced displacement and migration. What are their stories like? How did these people integrate into a new community and the society, and how long did it take?
Sexual harassment between children is widespread. The information comes from a study conducted by the University of Oulu, which examined sexual harassment that took place in peer relationships between children and the possibilities of dealing with the issue with children through creative methods.
How does co-operation with others work when face-to-face interaction is moved to the virtual world and physical presence replaced with an avatar playing field that opens up through virtual reality headsets? The University of Oulu is interested in exploring virtual reality in technology and in human sciences.
The latest trends in the research on artificial intelligence at the University of Oulu are related to human well-being and activity. Artificial intelligence identifies emotions from both human face and voice, and turns the operating environment into a ‘smart space’ Sanna Järvelä, professor in the field of learning and educational technology, envisions using artificial intelligence for stimulating learning.
This year, the Associated International Conference and Rectors' Forum of the University of the Arctic (UArctic) cooperative network was held in Aberdeen, Scotland, under the theme Conversations from the North. The talks given underscored the cooperation between local people and researchers – that is the only way by which the life in the Arctic can be genuinely improved.
Academy Research Fellow Anna-Kaisa Salmi from the University of Oulu has received major funding from the European Research Council (ERC) for research on animal domestication. The 5-year ERC Starting Grant funding is worth 1.49 million euros.