Finland, often celebrated for its picturesque landscapes and high standard of living, also grapples with issues of regional inequality. In the northernmost parts of the country, or Finnish Lapland, the indigenous Sámi people are confronted with harsh weather conditions, sparsely populated areas, and limited economic opportunities. Coastal regions, particularly those in the east, face historical shifts in industries like forestry and manufacturing, which have led to unemployment and population decline in some coastal towns. As younger generations seek better opportunities in larger cities, these regions experience an ageing population, which can strain local resources and social services.
Efforts to address these disparities have been ongoing, with initiatives aimed at improving infrastructure, promoting entrepreneurship, and investing in education and innovation. While Finland's marginalised regions contend with various challenges, they remain an integral part of the country's identity and potential.
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The below organisations actively support research and life in Finnish marginalised regions. MARGISTAR believes in their efforts and invites you to follow these projects online or connect with their representatives within the MARGISTAR consortium.
Meet MARGISTAR's Finnish Members
Prof Juha HiedanpääResearch Professor at LUKE
Juha is a Research Professor at LUKE, the Natural Resources Institute of Finland, and focuses on land use planning, co-creation, conflict management, natural resource policy, environmental policy, large carnivore policy, ecosystem services, environmental economics, environmental policy, long-term decision-making (PALO project). He is also MARGISTAR's Action Chair.
Dr Mikko JokinenSenior Scientist at LUKE
Mikko is a Senior Scientist at LUKE, the Natural Resources Institute of Finland, and specialises in nature use in Lapland, environmental social studies, reconciliation, anthropology, land use in Sami territory in Finland, mining, nature-based tourism.
Dr Simo SarkkiEnvironmental Social Scientist at the University of Oulu
Simo is an environmental social scientist and docent of "Anthropology of environmental governance" at the University of Oulu.
Taru RikkonenDoctoral Researcher at LUKE
Taru is a doctoral researcher at LUKE, the Natural Resources Institute of Finland, and focuses on rural studies, land use and natural resource governance.