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Finland aims to establish a Finnish landscape observatory

A wide range of Finnish governmental, academic and civil society institutions have created a Consortium to study the constitution of the Landscape Observatory of Finland.
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The Consortium integrates the Ministry of the Environment, The National Board of Antiquities, The Finnish Environment Centre (SYKE), The Natural Resource Centre of Finland (LUKE), The University of Helsinki, The University of Jyväskylä, The University of Turku, The Aalto University, the Professional Association of Landscape Architects (MARK) and the Finnish Society for Cultural Environment Studies.

The Consortium is the first cross-party co-operation in the field of landscape management and research in Finland and was born after a series of national and international seminars organized by Aalto University in Otaniemi. During those seminars, the representatives of the above-mentioned institutions analyzed the current level of implementation of the European Landscape Convention in Finland and agreed in the high potential that a Landscape Observatory could have in that process.

The concept of Landscape Observatory is based on the European Landscape Convention and follows the recommendations of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. According to those recommendations, Landscape Observatories are strategic tools for describing the condition and evolution of landscapes over time, for exchanging experiences and knowledge concerning landscape protection, management, planning and participation, for measuring the effectiveness of landscape policies and for forecasting the effects that transformative factors can have on the landscape.

Following these principles, the Landscape Observatory of Finland, would contribute to have a better knowledge of the Finnish Landscapes, both the exceptional and the ordinary, and would support the implementation of other related strategies like the Cultural Environment Strategy and national strategy on Sustainable Development.

“The Consortium will start soon its work and is expected to define the goals, structure and institutional framework for the possible Landscape Observatory of Finland. We want to make an effective, inclusive and useful platform that can contribute to the general interests of the Finnish society and that can take advantage of the internal diversity that we already have in the Consortium,” says Professor Juanjo Galan from Aalto University.

 

More information:

  • Juanjo Galan, Professor in Landscape Architecture, Aalto University: [email protected]
  • Tapio Heikkilä, Senior Environmental Adviser, Ministry of the Environment: [email protected]
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