Maija Toivanen

Maija Toivanen


Doctoral Researcher

4 peer reviewed publications in international journals. The publications have been cited 30 times, of which the most cited publication accounts for 12 citations. The author has a h-index of 3.00. (Google Scholar)


Maija Toivanen works as a doctoral researcher in Physical Geography Research Group. She is interested in biodiversity-geodiversity relationship and large-scale freshwater ecology. Her PhD focuses on a question whether geodiversity can be used as a surrogate for lake biodiversity and a measure of a conservation value (funded by Maj & Tor Nessling Foundation).

Toivanen is also working on the GlobalFood project, which studies the global accessibility to food resources using modern spatial analysis techniques.

Science communication is of special interest to Toivanen. She is studying science communication in the TIEMA master program in the University of Oulu.

Research interests

  • Geodiversity
  • Biodiversity
  • Large-scale ecology
  • Freshwater ecosystems
  • Aquatic plants
  • Conserving Nature´s Stage framework
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Functional ecology


Social media

Professional and community activities

  • Copyeditor and layout editor of Alue & Ympäristö [Region & Environment] journal 2020–
  • Board member of Geographical Society of Northern Finland 2019–
  • Editorial board member of Nordia Geographical Publications journal 2019–

Research groups

  • Physical Geography Research Group (PGRG)
  • Large-Scale Ecology Laboratory
  • Macrophyte Biogeography Lab

Selected publications

  • Alahuhta, Janne; Toivanen, Maija; Hjort, Jan (2020) Geodiversity-biodiversity relationship needs more empirical evidence. - Nature ecology & evolution 4 (1), 2-3 . [Original]
  • Toivanen, Maija; Hjort, Jan; Heino, Jani; Tukiainen, Helena; Aroviita, Jukka; Alahuhta, Janne (2019) Is catchment geodiversity a useful surrogate of aquatic plant species richness?. - Journal of biogeography 46 (8), 1711-1722 . [Original]
  • Alahuhta, Janne; Toivanen, Maija; Hjort, Jan; Ecke, Frauke; Johnson, Lucinda B.; Sass, Laura; Heino, Jani (2017) Species richness and taxonomic distinctness of lake macrophytes along environmental gradients in two continents. - Freshwater biology 62 (7), 1194-1206 . [Original]
  • Toivanen, Maija (2020) Saariselän huiput ovat tärkeitä tutkimuskohteita. - Saariselän Sanomat 16.08.2020
  • Toivanen, Maija (2020) Maisema merkitsee ihmiselle ja luonnolle. - Kaleva 16.04.2020
  • Toivanen, Maija (2019) Geodiversiteetti luonnon monimuotoisuuden näyttämönä. - Versus 17.1.2019, 1-4 . [Original]
  • Toivanen, Mauja (2019) Maija Toivasen kirje Alexander von Humboldtille: “Sinun jalanjäljissäsi”. - Science with Arctic Attitude -Blog 19.11.2019 .
  • Toivanen, Maija (2019) Mitä monimuotoisuuden tutkija miettii luonnossa?. - Maj & Tor Nesslingin Säätiön blogi 11.08.2019 .

Thesis supervisions

Master theses
  • Henna Snåre (2020) Determinants of aquatic plant richness: scale dependency and global patterns. Unpublished Master thesis. University of Oulu, Geography Research Unit.

Research visits

  • Visiting researcher at University of Nottingham (UK)
    25.2.2019 to 25.4.2019

    A research visit to the School of Geography hosted by Assoc. Prof. Richard Field and Dr. Franziska Schrodt.


Max Hermansson (Unsplash)

Geodiversity as a surrogate for freshwater biodiversity and a measure of a conservation value

Geodiversity as a surrogate for freshwater biodiversity and a measure of a conservation value is MSc Maija Toivanen's PhD research project

Global geographic accessibility to food resources (GlobalFood)

Global geographic accessibility to food resources: Exploring spatial mismatch between food production, consumption and transport system by using bi