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TAKE A PEEK INTO

STUDENT LIFE

NEW TECHNOLOGY REVOLUTIONISES

LEARNING [1]


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Over

130

Each year nearly

5,000

subjects

scientific publications

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Humanities Mathematics and Natural Sciences Medicine Law Social Sciences Education Turku School of Economics Students from over

100 countries

UTU – LIFE & SCIENCE MAGAZINE Chief Editor Tuomas Koivula

Over

22,000

Subeditor Mari Ratia Translations Mari Ratia and Saara Yli-Kauhaluoma Layout Hanna Oksanen

students and staff

CONTENTS

Contact information University Communications, FI-20014 University of Turku, Finland,   (communications@utu.fi)

3. 4. 9. 12. 18.

FROM A FREE PEOPLE TO FREE SCIENCE – AND GLOBAL COMMUNITY CHOOSE YOUR FUTURE CHALLENGES RADICALISATION

20. 24. 32. 36. 38.

SCIENCE BITES

SCIENCE TAKES OVER THE ISLAND OF THOUSAND STORIES

MEET OUR UTU BLOGGERS!

AUTONOMOUS SHIPPING RESEARCH REDEFINES MARITIME INDUSTRY

NEW TEACHING METHODS BOOST DIGITISATION OF EDUCATION

SMARTPHONE APP DETECTS HEART ATTACKS

TRANSNATIONAL EDUCATION SPREADS FINNISH EXPERTISE AROUND THE WORLD

[2]

ACADEMY PROFESSOR STRIVES AGAINST DISCRIMINATION


FROM A FREE PEOPLE TO FREE SCIENCE – AND GLOBAL COMMUNITY This year, Finland is celebrating 100 years of independence. The history of Finland and the University of Turku are tightly connected as, only a month before the declaration of independence, the Turku Finnish University Society was established. The purpose of the Society was to found a Finnish language university to Turku, since at the time, all higher education in Finland was provided almost entirely in Swedish. However, the most important motive was to advance the Finnish culture, science and society. In 1920, the University of Turku was founded with the donations of 20,000 Finnish people. The motto of the University, “From a free people to free science”, reflects the newly gained independence as well as the aspiration to strengthen Finnish science. It was understood early on that internationality and tolerance were also an important part of a national university. Last year, the Times Higher Education ranking placed the University of Turku among the 200 most international universities in the world as the only Finnish university. Today, we cherish Finnish language, science and culture but also work in close collaboration with international partners and welcome students and staff from all over the world. With our roots in the Finnish independence, we are now taking free science to the global community. Kalervo Väänänen The Rector of the University of Turku

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TEXT TARU SUHONEN & ERJA HYYTIÄINEN | PHOTOS ANTTI TARPONEN & TOMMI PIRILÄ

CHOOSE YOUR FUTURE CHALLENGES RADICALISATION IN 2015, EUROPE FACED A GREAT CHALLENGE as hundreds of thousands of people had to leave their homes in Assyria, Afghanistan and Iraq, and seek asylum in European countries. As a response to the challenge, students at Turku School of Economics of the University of Turku developed a campaign, Choose Your Future. The Choose Your Future project came about in the autumn of 2015 as a group work of 49 students on the Strategic Brand Management course. The team developed a mobile application called About Turku to provide asylum seekers with useful information about their new home city in their native languages. In addition, the student group founded a Facebook community in which locals and asylum seekers can discuss and learn new things of each other’s cultures. Choose Your Future also organised different kinds of events: a friendly football match between asylum seekers and Finns, a clothes collection for reception centres, and an event on the international restaurant day.

Katerina Panina, Susanna Lahtinen and Matti Sahi are among the group who founded Choose Your Future.

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In early 2016, Choose Your Future participated in the international Facebook Global Digital Challenge which was organised in collaboration by Facebook and the U.S. Department of State. The competition was targeted at universities around the world and aimed at creating new means for decreasing the attractiveness of extremist organisations, particularly by utilising social media. Choose Your Future won the Facebook Global Digital Challenge and the students were invited to Washington to present their project to the United States Government. Later, the group was also invited to the UN’s General Assembly to give a presentation at the peace and security session. The project gained further international acclaim, as the American Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), which accredits business schools, chose Choose Your Future on its 2017 list of most inspirational innovations. Through the Innovations That Inspire initiative, AACSB aims to identify ways in which business schools provide more value to the society as they spearhead innovative practices in today’s ever-changing globalised world. The initiative highlights the means with which educational institutions have managed to bring about change and an environment of new kind of thinking—the objective is to spread competent practises among the participating institutions. – Choose Your Future is a magnificent example of how to develop the innovativeness and impact of university education: it reflects extending the ways of thinking as well as openness while considering different solutions to major, societal challenges, says Turku School of Economics Dean Markus Granlund.

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MOBILE GUIDE TO NEW UNIVERSITY STUDENTS Choose Your Future is creating a unique mobile service for the new students of the University of Turku and it will help them in adjusting to the new city and study environment. At the beginning of 2017, new exchange students can test the application and in the autumn the University will offer it to all new students. – Our application supports adjusting to the new region, whether the incomer is a refugee, student or someone moving here because of work, says Katerina Panina, a student and one of the founders of CYF. The University of Turku is the first organisation to try out the new application. The mobile app has three different features: information, events and maps. The information feature provides both standard information and contents that are tailored to the client’s wishes. In the event feature, all the registered users can create new events, and the map feature places the information and events to specific locations.

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ENTREPRENEURIAL UNIVERSITY.

CREATIVE, INNOVATIVE AND BOLD RENEWERS FOR WORKING LIFE A YEAR AGO, THE UNIVERSITY OF TURKU DECLARED ITSELF AN ENTREPRENEURIAL UNIVERSITY. IT STANDS FOR INNOVATION AND COMMERCIALISING RESEARCH, UNIVERSITY-INCUBATED COMPANIES AND CLOSE COLLABORATION WITH ECONOMIC LIFE. EQUALLY, IT OFFERS ENTREPRENEURIAL EDUCATION, INSPIRES AN ENTERPRISING ATTITUDE IN THE STUDENTS AND PROMOTES RESEARCH IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP.

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BUILD YOUR FUTURE

FUTURE CAREER WITH US! The University of Turku offers 13 international Master’s Degree Programmes. The two-year programmes are based on the University’s research strengths. Check out our Master's degree portal and find out more about the programmes, entry requirements , fees, and studying in Turku.

www.utu.fi/masters

[8]


Meet our UTU Bloggers! JACOB STEVENS-YAGER

AUSTRALIA

MASTER’S DEGREE PROGRAMME IN LAW AND INFORMATION SOCIETY

Read Jacob's blog

My favourite thing about Turku: The student friendly vibe that it offers. The large amount of University students means there is a young and energetic feeling within the city and always something going on. Most special aspect about studying in UTU: The international feel and community. You always meet people from different backgrounds, countries, and experiences. Such cultural diversity creates a sense of welcoming and togetherness. My tip for new students: Bring lots of warm clothes BUT don't be afraid of the winter. While it can be dark, the snow creates a beautiful atmosphere and there seems to be a great sense of calm and harmony across the city.“ [9]


ANNA SKURATOVA RUSSIA

MASTER’S DEGREE PROGRAMME IN LEARNING, LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS AND EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS

Read Anna's blog

My favourite thing about Turku: I like that Turku is surrounded by forests where you can enjoy a walk. It’s amazing to feel united with nature. Most special aspect about studying at UTU: The level of respect, care, and freedom you receive studying at the University. My tip for new students: Take an active part in the university life. It’s fascinating!“

NHAN THANH NGUYEN  VIETNAM

MASTER’S DEGREE PROGRAMME IN GLOBAL INNOVATION MANAGEMENT

Read Nhan's blog

My favourite place in Turku: The tranquil and stunning sights along the Aura River with many superb ships and hundreds of gulls during the summer time. Most surprising aspect about studying at UTU: The great effort that is taken to facilitate and maximize students’ opportunities to learn with various methods, from traditional teaching to innovation camps, seminars, conferences, and international virtual teams. My tip for new students: Be prepared to have a hectic schedule for exploring the native soil of Santa Claus in Lapland, the largest old wooden old city at Rauma, summer jazz festival in Pori, the wonderful archipelagos, seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and many more sights waiting for you here in Finland.“ [ 10 ]


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IMPORTANTMEETINGSSINCE

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text erja hyytiäinen | photos and photo manipulation hanna oksanen

NEW TEACHING METHODS BOOST DIGITISATION OF EDUCATION [ 12 ]


ALEKSI LAHTI LIFTS HIS HAND AND SAYS HE IS HOLDING A SKELETON. FIVE PUPILS ASK EAGER QUESTIONS – WHAT IS THAT BONE THERE, WHAT ABOUT THAT ONE? NOW THEY DISCOVER THE TIBIA AND RADIUS WITH THE HELP OF THEIR IMAGINATION AND VERBAL INSTRUCTIONS, IN A FEW YEARS THE SKELETON WILL BE VISIBLE AS A HOLOGRAM-LIKE PICTURE. NEW TECHNOLOGY REVOLUTIONISES LEARNING. THE RESEARCH CONDUCTED AT THE DEPARTMENT OF TEACHER EDUCATION BOOSTS AND SUPPORTS THE DIGITISATION OF COMPREHENSIVE SCHOOLS.

O

ne of the Finnish Government’s key projects is to encourage the use of new learning environments and digital materials in comprehensive schools. Researchers at the Faculty of Education of the University of Turku know that the reform requires much more than only introducing tablet computers to classrooms. E-book is not just a traditional school book in a digital form. A new way of obtaining, utilising, learning and searching for information has to be introduced to materials and schools. Steps have already been taken. For example, the Sciless project has studied both in theory and practice how secondary school students could be encouraged to utilise their knowledge

and skills in different subjects in order to gain a deeper and more extensive understanding of a certain topic or theme. The project is led by the Dean of the Faculty of Education, Professor Marja Vauras. – We picked the Baltic Sea as our theme. In teaching, we used skills in biology and chemistry both in actual and virtual laboratories. We were able to utilise the original data collected by marine biologists from Åbo Akademi University. Last May, we visited the Tvärminne Zoological Station in Southern Finland, says Vauras. The Sciless project combines many of the goals set up by the comprehensive school reform. Sciless focuses on student-centred learning where the teacher’s task is to inspire the students. In the background of the project is the secondary school students’ decreasing interest in

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Students must learn

how to work with others, to receive feedback and to give critique. Today’s working life requires the ability to finish a project and to work together“

mathematics and natural sciences. Sciless studies whether their attitudes change when learning is more fun, meaningful, versatile and genuine. In addition to breaking the boundaries between subjects, an important factor in the project is entering the society. Professor Mirjamaija Mikkilä-Erdmann predicts that, in the future, pupils are more eager to search for information from outside the school environment. – It will not be enough that learning happens just in a classroom. The pupils have to go outside, to libraries, museums, nature. For example, if the topic is sustainable development and the pupils want to achieve a deeper understanding, a trip to a recycling centre is worth a visit, describes Mikkilä-Erdmann.

MAKING LEARNING FUN Digi teacher, Project Researcher Aleksi Lahti introduces himself. His unofficial title describes

the central focus of his job well. Lahti studies, plans and test how digitisation supports learning and teaching. At Raunistula elementary school, he encourages his pupils to imagine what it would be like if the tops of their desks were large touch screens. The girls move imaginary blocks around the desks and check what the others are doing. The imaginary lesson has achieved what Sciless is trying to realise. Learning is inspiring, fun and students are asking for more. In the comprehensive school of the future, it is not enough to just give some homework. Instead, it is the teacher’s task to find ways that stimulate the children’s natural curiosity. Future learning will highlight experience, independent information retrieval and insight. – We have to develop the ways in which we can inspire the pupils to take an interest in learning and get into it, says Vauras.

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Key concepts are enthusiasm, excitement and desire. When those are awakened, even the topics that seem difficult can enthral the pupils. Interest is increased by giving more options and responsibility. Quick and slow learners can proceed at their own pace and that is when everyone can succeed. – New learning environments create opportunities to inspire pupils. We bring joy to the school day, says Aleksi Lahti and gives an example. In a few years, the classrooms will have smart surfaces that can be used to display the Amazonia, for instance. The biology teacher tells the pupils to cut a leaf from a specific tree and

it ”falls” on their tablet where it can be examined further with a microscope. A smart surface on the classroom floor can be used in mathematics, for example, pupils could learn addition through gamification by adding numbers together by jumping. In addition, pupils could make virtual visits to the Roman Empire, Battle of Waterloo, or a medieval castle with the help of augmented reality. – But what kind of a technological leap can we expect in the next 5–10 years? What kind of a school will those children go to who are born this year? The rate of change is so fast that we cannot even dream of all the possibilities, says Lahti.

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According to Aleksi Lahti, the significance of arts subjects and physical education will not diminish. They are needed to encourage creativity. Digitisation supports these subjects, and coding is already used in arts and QR codes have found their way to orienteering lessons. New technology, such as smart surfaces, offers new possibilities.

And books will soon be history as well? No, if Professor Mirjamaija Mikkilä-Erdmann has anything to say about it. – A book is such a great interface that I do not think it will disappear. One obstacle with e-books is that people get easily lost in the materials. A book has a linear structure and it is easy to leaf and glance through. Reading a book supports thinking, notes Mikkilä-Erdmann, who herself develops e-books.

The most frightening image portrays a school of the future where pupils plod on independently with their studies, wholly immersed in their tablets. Researchers at the Department of Teacher Education reject this scenario right out of hand. The role of the teacher changes, but its significance will not diminish. – I believe that the challenges for teachers will be even greater in the future. Teachers must help their students in building a more profound

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understanding of different topics. They should encourage their pupils to test, practise and how to give and receive feedback. The teachers must have a good grasp of the latest methods and materials so that they can help their pupils. Everything must be based on scientific knowledge, states Mikkilä-Erdmann. Lahti emphasises that one of the most central tasks of school is to teach social skills. – Students must learn how to work with others, to receive feedback and to give critique. Today’s working life requires the ability to finish a project and to work together, says Lahti.

In the school of the future, it will only increase and one possible approach could be team teaching. In the model, a team consisting of a teacher, special education teacher, school welfare officer and teaching assistant teaches and supports the class during lessons. Teachers will not be replaced by computers, Lahti is sure of that. And neither will the computers replace people’s need to learn. They will only do what people have taught them. Creativity needs human input – that of the teacher’s as well as the student’s. – People think in complex ways, people can dream, concludes Lahti.

Mikkilä-Erdmann adds teaching emotional skills to the list. She knows that some elements of social work has sneaked into the teachers’ profession.

Professors Marja Vauras, Mirjamaija Mikkilä-Erdmann and Erno Lehtinen emphasise that new methods must be based on scientific knowledge.

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text mari ratia | photo katja kontu

TRANSNATIONAL EDUCATION SPREADS FINNISH EXPERTISE

AROUND THE WORLD THE NEED FOR EXPERT EDUCATION AND HIGH-QUALITY DEGREE PROGRAMMES IS GROWING RAPIDLY ALL OVER THE WORLD AND MANY COUNTRIES TURN TO TRANSNATIONAL EDUCATION AS A SOLUTION. IN RECENT YEARS, THE EXPORT OF EDUCATION FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF TURKU HAS INCREASED SUBSTANTIALLY. Since 2014, transnational education at the University of Turku has been managed through Finland University that was founded together with Universities of Tampere and Eastern Finland. Transnational education has seen a rapid increase – in 2014, the University sold four education packages, the number of which jumped to 31 last year. Transnational education can come many forms. It can be either a package sold to target countries, a programme in which students arrive to the University of Turku to learn, or combinations of both. The length can vary from a couple of days to years. — Our transnational education services are based on expertise and the latest research conducted at the University. The customers include international public organisations and governments of foreign countries. We offer our customers education packages that meet their needs. New openings are planned, as there is great global interest towards, for example, information security and information management, says Coordinator of Education Export Jukka Pulkkinen.

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Teacher education bought by the NSFAF foundation was launched at the Department of Teacher Education of the University of Turku in February 2017. Altogether 24 Namibian future teachers study the first two years in Rauma and the third year in their home country.

EDUCATION LEADS THE WAY As the reputation of Finnish education is well known worldwide, many countries are interested in it. The Faculty of Education has taken up the challenge and provides a varied selection of transnational education. The Faculty’s recent contracts have included the development of English teachers’ continuing education in Oman and collaboration with Indonesia in pedagogy. In addition, the KiVa Antibullying Program of the Faculty of Social Sciences has been the flagships of the University’s transnational education for several years. The most recent KiVa agreements have been made with Spain, Chile and the Basque area. KiVa Program is currently operating in altogether 13 countries, and new partnerships are being built in Latin America as well as in Sweden and Ireland. One of the newest and most extensive models is the Bachelor’s degree education carried out by the Department of Teacher Education at the Rauma campus. The three-year education has been acquired by a Namibian national foundation for 25 students. First two years are completed in Rauma and the third in Namibia, and the students will receive a high-quality Bachelor’s degree that will qualify them as basic level teachers in Namibia. – In Finland, we believe in education. It is a great power that can change society, and each child deserves the best possible education. When a state can provide it, the country is headed towards greater equality and prosperity, says Rector of the University of Turku Kalervo Väänänen.

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SCIENCE BITES

read more www.utu.fi/en

ELEPHANT CALVES ARE MORE LIKELY TO SURVIVE IN THE CARE OF THEIR GRANDMOTHERS

A

mong the Asian elephants, grandmothers have a significant role. They ensure the survival of the calves and breeding success for their daughters. The calves of young elephant mothers under 20 years of age had eight times lower mortality risk if the grandmother resided in the same location.

KAISA MATOMÄKI WINS SIGNIFICANT NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL PRIZES

– Grandmothers may be particularly important for the reproductive success of their inexperienced adult daughters. Older daughters, on the other hand, would have already gained enough experience in calf rearing to succeed without the help of their mother, says Academy Professor Virpi Lummaa, who was part of the research group that studied the elephants in Myanmar.

Academy Research Fellow Kaisa Matomäki, who works in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Turku, received the Award for Scientific Courage from the Academy of Finland. According to the Academy, Matomäki has shown exceptional scientific audacity, creativity or innovation in research. She was also the recipient of the 2016 SASTRA Ramanujan Prize. She was awarded the prize together with Maksym Radziwill for their collaborative work on the average values of multiplicative functions in short intervals.

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photo: Virpi Lummaa

compiled by: mari ratia


SCIENCE BITES

read more www.utu.fi/en

FIRST FINNISH PROFESSORSHIP FOR

GAMIFICATION TO THE UNIVERSITY CONSORTIUM OF PORI

The new professorship for gamification focuses on the central role of games in society. Professor Juho Hamari is one of the leading researchers in gamification worldwide. Gamification entails including game-like elements in different kinds of systems. Today, game dynamics and mechanics are applied, for example, in online services, education as well as in working life.

CERTAIN HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE DRUGS BLOCK CANCER INVASION Researchers have identified a new way of blocking the spread of cancer. Calcium channel blockers, which are used to lower blood pressure, block breast and pancreatic cancer invasion by inhibiting cellular structures called filopodia. They are sticky, finger-like structures the cancer cells extend to sense their environment and to navigate. The team found that calcium channel blockers target specifically these sticky fingers rendering them inactive, thus efficiently blocking cancer cell movement.

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SCIENCE BITES

Immigrant’s Perspective to Finland Mehdi Ghasemi, a post-doc researcher at the English Department of the University of Turku, enjoys writing. His new book, titled Flight to Finland: A Noveramatry, provides a look into Finland from an immigrant’s perspective. Ghasemi employs different techniques to transform the conventional forms of writing and transfer his feelings to the readers. The form noveramatry combines prose, poetry and drama. –The book is a collection of experiences collected during five years, not only by me, but also by immigrants and Finns I’ve met and talked with.

WOMEN IN LONG RELATIONSHIPS MAY EXPERIENCE GREATER DECREASE IN SEXUAL DESIRE Recent longitudinal study suggests that women who were in the same relationship for over seven years showed greater decrease in sexual desire. – Changes in relationship status had an impact on several sexual functions. The most pronounced observation for sexual desire was that women who were in the same relationship throughout the observation period had the greatest decrease in sexual desire, whereas women who had found a new partner reported somewhat lower decreases and women who were single at the end of the observation period reported stable sexual desire, says Doctoral Candidate in psychology Annika Gunst.

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SCIENCE BITES

read more www.utu.fi/en

UNIVERSITY OF TURKU AMONG WORLD'S TOP IN 12 DISCIPLINES

FISHING CAN REDUCE SIZE VARIATION IN FISH Fishing typically removes large individuals from the population. Over time, this leads to evolutionary shrinking of fish and also erodes the natural genetic diversity of fish stocks. New study from the University of Turku shows that removal of the largest individuals from populations can decrease variability in fish size which in turn can hinder their adaptation to environmental changes.

including nursing, education, medicine, biological sciences, and business and management studies. QS Ranking by Subject 2017

DOCTORAL CANDIDATES POPULARISED SCIENCE AND PRESENTED THEIR RESEARCH IN THE THREE MINUTE THESIS COMPETITION

The winner was Tarek Omran with his presentation on Optimizing dental composite structures: A bio-memetic approach to dental mechanics.

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TEXT ERJA HYYTIÄINEN AND JENNI VALTA | PHOTOS HANNA OKSANEN

SCIENCE TAKES OVER THE ISLAND OF THOUSAND STORIES


SEAL ISLAND. GROUNDS OF THE SWEDISH CROWN. LEPER COLONY. LAST STOP FOR THE MENTALLY ILL. TREASURE TROVE FOR MARINE BIOLOGISTS. THE HISTORY OF THE ISLAND OF SEILI CONTAINS THOUSANDS OF STORIES AND THERE ARE MORE TO COME. A LITTLE OVER A YEAR AGO, THE UNIVERSITY OF TURKU BOUGHT THE OLD HOSPITAL BUILDINGS AND THE ISLAND WILL ACCOMMODATE BOTH RESEARCHERS AND VISITORS IN THE FUTURE.

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T

he Östern ferry parts the waves of the Finnish Archipelago Sea. The trip to the island of Seili takes about 20 minutes from the town of Nauvo. The Archipelago Research Institute is situated on Seili where researchers of the University of Turku conduct multidisciplinary research ranging from marine environment and Baltic herrings to ticks. Only four people live on the island throughout the year, but during the summer it is packed with activity as students, researchers and tour-

ists visit Seili. It offers a safe haven also for animals and rare plants – there are altogether 29 endangered and 26 vulnerable species on the small island. Even rarer is Seili’s greatest treasure: the world’s longest follow-up data on sea water in the Baltic Sea. – Our researchers have recorded data on the state of the Finnish Archipelago Sea and monitored the marine environment around Seili since 1966. We celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Archipelago Research Institute and its research in 2016. Originally, we started the follow-up of the state of the marine environment by hand and, every ten days, we meas-

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ured the water’s physical properties, including temperature, salinity and amount of zooplankton. The current automatic buoy was placed in the same spot in 2006 to complete the manual measurements. In addition to temperature and salinity, we can now also measure oxygen content, turbidity, chlorophyll a, and the amount of blue-green algae, says Director of Archipelago Research Institute Jari Hänninen, a long-term resident of Seili. The buoy collects the data four times a day and sends it telemetrically to a server. The data is also published on the saaristomeri.utu.fi website. The longitudinal data is a treasure when researchers strive to understand complicated and

slowly changing phenomena, such as climate change. Where many scientists in the 1990s still questioned climate change, the researchers at Seili could demonstrate the changes in the marine environment. Their studies have shown how changes in the Atlantic influence the ecosystem of the Baltic Sea and how the increased precipitation caused by global warming reduces its salinity.

CROWN JEWELS OF RESEARCH – BALTIC HERRING AND TICKS Another longitudinal study conducted at Seili is the Baltic herring research that started in 1981. It began when the University was asked to discover whether ship traffic is harming fish and fishery in the Airisto inlet.

The Seili hospital, which was initially founded as a leper colony in 1619, was transformed into a psychiatric institution in 1841.

Director of Archipelago Research Institute Jari Hänninen has lived on the island of Seili for a long time.

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The University of Turku bought the hospital buildings and their grounds in 2015.

– Baltic herring often return to spawn to the same place where they hatched. But suddenly the spawning grounds contained a high sediment load. At the same time, other changes in the marine environment have had an impact on their their prey, for example. In 15 years, the average weight of Baltic herring has reduced by 40 percent. Our follow-up data also reveals that the number of males has decreased more rapidly than females and that there are developmental disturbances in the milt and spawn sacks of Baltic herring, lists Hänninen.

We are glad that maritime research is so strongly emphasised in the University's Strategy. It is important to us here at Seili.”

The Baltic herring research is one of the researchers’ most cited studies. – We conduct research that is highly recognised internationally, notes Hänninen.

In addition to the longitudinal studies, researchers at Seili have also initiated new research projects whose spearhead is the tick study. Four years ago, everyone started talking about ticks and, since then, not a single summer week has passed without someone remarking on the steep increase in the number of the insects. Ticks spread Borrelia bacteria that causes Lyme

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SEILI IN SHORT • Seili is a small island in the Turku Archipelago, it is 2.5 km long and 1.5 km wide. Today, the island accommodates the Archipelago Research Institute of the University of Turku. • When the ice sheet retreated from the Baltic Sea region 10,000 years ago, Seili, Själö by its Swedish name, became seal hunter’s home base. Two sacred stones prove that people lived on the island already in the Iron Age. • In the 16th century, peasants of the Swedish Crown farmed the land at Seili. • By the order of King Gustav II Adolf, a leper colony was founded on the island in 1619 and patients with mental or other chronic illnesses were also sent to the hospital.

4 3 2 1

• The Seili church was built in 1733. • The Seili hospital was turned into a psychiatric institution in 1841. From 1959 onwards, no new patients were admitted and the hospital closed in 1962. • The Archipelago Research Institute began its operations on Seili in 1964. In December 2015, the University bought the hospital buildings and their grounds. 1

FERRY PIER

2

ARCHIPELAGO RESEARCH INSTITUTE

3

SEILI CHURCH

4

HARBOUR

THE BIG SCIENCE BANG TEAM VISITED THE ISLAND OF SEILI TO STUDY THE SCIENCE OF SAUNA

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Since 2012, researchers have gathered tick samples from closely specified areas every three weeks. In the summer of 2016, intern Markus Weckström was collecting samples.

disease in humans. At Seili, researchers studied ticks already in the 1990s, but the research commenced in earnest in 2012. They wanted to discover if anything had changed in two decades. Samples were collected from all around the island and the results astonished even the experienced researchers. – The tick population was 50 times larger that before, says Hänninen. At the same time, public discussion on the diseases that the ticks spread kept increasing. With donated funding, it was possible to conduct a more extensive study as well as a public survey. The survey was followed by a request that people send tick samples to the University. And they truly did! In a single summer, over 20,000 ticks were sent to the University.

– The tick study is one of the most significant independent projects at the University of Turku and it involves several departments from different faculties. The study is a collaboration between researchers from the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, namely the Archipelago Research Institute, Zoological Museum, the Ecology and Genetics units at the Department of Biology, and the Microbiology and Immunology units at the Faculty of Medicine. Doctoral candidates from both faculties are completing dissertations within the project, tells Hänninen.

SHAPING THE FUTURE OF SEILI Researchers at Seili are trying to steer the research to a more multidisciplinary direction. The natural scientists have for years invited other disciplines to visit and work on the island and the guest book reveals that many people have

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The Seili church was built in 1733. It contained separate doors and sections for the lepers and healthy people living on the island.

accepted their invitation. Entries for a seminar in political science, a camp for humanists and by visitors from arts studies go side by side. Even an accordion camp and an art course have been organised on the island.

will be developed with a respect towards nature and cultural values. The goal of developing the tourism on the island is to offer a chance to the public to learn more about Seili as a versatile destination for culture, nature and science.

In addition, access to the island and the visibility of the research will be improved. At the beginning of 2017, the Archipelago Research Institute became part of the new Biodiversity Unit, whose one central goal is to promote the protection of the Baltic Sea Region. Another important aspect is to highlight societal interaction along with research and education. For the Biodiversity Unit, Seili offers a unique opportunity to tell the public about important environmental issues, such as the state of the Baltic Sea, climate change and species extinction.

As autumn arrives, the Östern ferry transfers elsewhere and a smaller Falkö ferry maintains the connection to the mainland. When the tourists and most of the researchers return home, the life on the island quietens down. Only a few people remain and take care of the buildings and equipment, and prepare for the next summer. – We are glad that maritime research is so strongly emphasised in the Strategy of the University of Turku. It is important to us here at Seili, says Hänninen.

The Head of the Biodiversity Unit Ilari E. Sääksjärvi emphasises that tourism activities at Seili

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text taru suhonen | illustration autonomous ship by rolls-royce

AUTONOMOUS SHIPPING

Research Redefines Maritime Industry VESSELS THAT ARE NAVIGATED AND MONITORED FROM REMOTE CONTROL STATIONS ON SHORE ARE EXPECTED TO ROAM THE SEAS ALREADY IN THE NEXT DECADE. THE AIM IS TO ADVANCE EFFECTIVENESS AND SAFETY IN SHIPPING, AND TO PROVIDE NEW COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE WITH AUTONOMOUS SOLUTIONS. A MULTIDISCIPLINARY TEAM OF RESEARCHERS FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF TURKU IS LOOKING FOR SOLUTIONS THAT ENABLE THE AUTONOMOUS FUTURE OF SHIPPING.

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Shipping is facing a global turning point as digitalisation enables the development of autonomous and remote control ships. A multidisciplinary team of researchers from the University of Turku is part of the Advanced Autonomous Waterborne Applications (AAWA) project studying and developing solutions for autonomous shipping in collaboration with companies and other universities and research institutes. Autonomous shipping is expected to provide benefits related to effectiveness and flexibility: when autonomous systems and the data they produce increase, whole transport chains can be optimised in a new way. In addition, com-

panies in the field are interested in increasing safety. – One reason behind the investment in autonomous shipping is also the fact that the actors in Europe are continuously searching for new ways of competing after the focus of the maritime industry moved to Asia. With the development of digital applications, the aim is on new kind of pioneering innovations, of which autonomous shipping is perhaps the most ambitious example, says Development Manager Jouni Saarni from Turku School of Economics, from where the subproject of the University of Turku is coordinated.

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The development of autonomous

shipping does not mean that we can start using fully autonomous ships straight away. If anything, it means that the amount of autonomous shipping procedures will gradually increase.”

REMOTE CONTROLLING REQUIRES RELIABLE SENSOR TECHNOLOGY Even though technology already partly enables remote controlled vehicles on land, sea and air, the development of autonomous shipping proceeds step by step. The University’s researchers study the prerequisites for remote and autonomous shipping when it comes to sensor technology, maritime liability and insurance, and changes in business environment. The goal has been to produce research material for building a future that utilises autonomy. One of the research questions in the project of the Department of Future Technologies at the University of Turku focuses on how all the objects on the ship’s route that require change of course or fast evasive action can be scanned extremely reliably. The research at the Department of Future Technologies is focused on new sensor technology, especially on the use of different cameras and the combination of camera and radar data, in other words, sensor fusion.

– No individual sensor can guarantee full reliability, for example, in all weather conditions, notes Senior Researcher Jonne Poikonen from the Department of Future Technologies. New sensor types produce great amounts of data and transferring the information to control centres might be difficult or expensive. – One of the goals is to find ways to reduce the amount of data on the surroundings so that the remote operator is still able to create a picture of what is happening around the ship that is as clear as possible. New technology makes it possible to create a more comprehensive image on land of what is happening on sea. As a consequence of autonomous shipping, the amount of accidents based on human error is expected to decrease, which will change the maritime insurance industry. The Faculty of Law is studying the effects of autonomous shipping on maritime liability and insurances. – Nowadays, the responsibility for damages is

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primarily based on the careless action or negligence of humans. Legally, the situation becomes difficult when the damage is a result of a mistake by an autonomous program instead of human negligence. One of the main questions is the extent to which the manufacturers of the ships and sensor systems or the shipyards are liable for the damages caused by autonomous ships.

SHIFT TO AUTONOMOUS SHIPPING TAKES TIME Researchers from Turku School of Economics have identified the development of autonomous shipping as a systemic innovation including both technological and social change. – It is interesting to see how different actors adopt new innovations that increase autonomy and how it transforms the structures of the industry. These innovations accumulate as a systemic change that will not only redefine the maritime but also wider societal operations. In recent maritime history, the introduction of containers can be seen as a similar change, says Jouni Saarni.

Researchers are mapping how the transition to autonomous shipping affects markets and actors globally. – The current actors of the field will have to reconsider their business strategies by developing new networks and services. New solutions and actors can be also expected from outside the maritime industry, notes Docent Hannu Makkonen. Researchers estimate that the first autonomous processes will be commercialised during the next 2–3 years. – The development of autonomous shipping does not mean that we can start using fully autonomous ships straight away. If anything, it means that the amount of autonomous shipping procedures will gradually increase. Autonomous shipping will become commonplace when all technological, commercial and social circumstances make it possible. This will most likely happen in the 2020s, says Director of the University of Turku subproject Antti Saurama.

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text jussi matikainen | illustration hanna oksanen

Smartphone App Detects Heart Attacks A SMARTPHONE APPLICATION DEVELOPED BY RESEARCHERS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TURKU CAN DETECT MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION, COMMONLY KNOWN AS A HEART ATTACK. NO EXTRA EQUIPMENT IS REQUIRED FOR THE APP AS IT UTILISES THE PHONE'S BUILT-IN MOTION SENSORS, ESPECIALLY THE GYROSCOPE. THE MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION DETECTION APP SHOULD BE AVAILABLE FOR TEST USE IN 2017.

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C

ardiovascular diseases are the most common cause of death worldwide, killing over 17.5 million people in 2012. One of the most well-known diseases belonging to this category is an acute myocardial infarction, i.e. a heart attack. It is important to detect the heart attack when the first symptoms appear, so that the patient can receive medical care as quickly as possible. However, sometimes people mistakenly assume that the chest pain is transient or caused by a heart burn, which can be fatal. – Myocardial infarction is caused by a blockage in the coronary artery that supplies oxygen-rich blood to the heart. The part of the heart muscle suffering from the lack of oxygen can be permanently damaged and therefore urgent clinical intervention is very important. The best treatment is a quick coronary angioplasty, says Professor of Cardiology Juhani Airaksinen from the Heart Centre of Turku University Hospital.

gery. Next, the researchers compared the two data sets. – The sensors of the smartphone, such as the gyroscope, are so sensitive that they are able to measure the rotational micro movements of the chest caused by the movement of the heart when the phone is placed on the patient’s chest. When the blood flow to the heart muscle is disturbed, these micro movements in the chest are affected and the phone can sense it, says Project Manager Tero Koivisto from the Technology Research Center (TRC) at the University of Turku. All iPhones and many Android phones feature a gyroscope. Data processing is carried out automatically and does not need to be interpreted by a person with medical training. – The machine learning algorithm we have developed can immediately tell if the patient is having a heart attack, says Koivisto.

INITIAL RESULTS ARE PROMISING

APP ENCOURAGES PATIENTS TO SEEK MEDICAL CARE FASTER

The study tested how well a heart attack can be detected using only the data collected with the built-in motion sensors of a smartphone. The study group consisted of 17 infarction patients, who were treated at the Heart Centre of Turku University Hospital. Measurements were taken by placing the smartphone on a patient’s chest for a few minutes while they were laying down and it measured the rotational micro movements of the chest. One recording was taken from each patient during the heart attack and the other after the coronary angioplasty sur-

When someone feels acute chest pain, the phone should be placed on their chest in order to start the recording. The data collection phase takes about two minutes. The app analyses the data immediately and gives the result. – The app is intended to encourage patients to seek medical care faster. Our goal is not to rule out heart attacks, but to give a signal to the patient when a real emergency is at hand, Koivisto describes the intended use of the app.

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text jussi matikainen | photos hanna oksanen

ACADEMY PROFESSOR

STRIVES AGAINST

DISCRIMINATION ACADEMY PROFESSOR JOHANNA NIEMI MOVED TO TURKU IN 2014 AND SOON FOUND HERSELF HANGING TURKU-THEMED CURTAINS IN HER WINDOWS. AS A RESEARCHER AND TEACHER, SHE WANTS TO TAKE PART IN BUILDING A SOCIETY WHERE NO ONE IS DISCRIMINATED FOR THEIR GENDER, ETHNIC BACKGROUND OR SEXUAL ORIENTATION.

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J

ohanna Niemi was appointed as the Professor of Procedural Law of the University of Turku at the beginning of 2014. In 2015, the Academy of Finland granted her the Minna Canth professorship which enables researchers of gender and equality to focus on their research for a five-year period.

– When teaching, I have noticed that today’s young adults are clearly and particularly highly aware of the status of sexual minorities and of the discrimination directed against them, as well as of the status of ethnic minorities. I’m happy that it’s so easy to discuss issues related to sexuality, ethnicity and gender with today’s students.

Niemi, who was born in Helsinki and grew up in Oulu, has lived most of her life in the Helsinki region. She came to the University of Turku from the University of Helsinki and is now starting to feel at home in Turku.

VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN MUST BE PREVENTED COMPREHENSIVELY

– Turku has a pleasant atmosphere. I have adapted well to the academic community and the University’s administrative services are very functional. The environment for conducting research is great, says Niemi. During the Minna Canth Academy professorship, Niemi combines law and gender studies in her research. – Gender perspective should be integrated in all fields of law and in other disciplines as well. Researchers and teachers should have the basic competence to discuss issues related to it. This requires persevering work. Niemi remarks that, besides gender, other causes for discrimination have also become part of contemporary discussions. These include, for example, ethnicity, age, disabilities or sexual orientation.

During her Academy professorship, Niemi is writing a book with the working title ”Gender in justice”. She uses legislation, preparatory works of legislative proposals, and court cases as source material for her book. Methodologically, her research has strong connections to the latest theories in gender studies. Niemi calls for a more comprehensive approach to preventing violence against women. – There have been positive developments: single paragraphs have been amended to improve policies against violence. However, there has been no systematic review of our legislation from the point of view of preventing violence against women. Niemi emphasises that Finland has pledged to prevent violence against women by signing international agreements, such as the Istanbul

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For a long time, I

was driven by my desire to discover, learn and understand new things. Now, it is more important to share my expertise, to mentor young researchers.” Convention of 2011 on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. – The European Court of Human Rights has often demanded that governments should have a systematic programme for preventing violence against women. We don’t have it in Finland yet and I want to emphasise this theme as the Minna Canth Academy Professor. Niemi’s second project concerns the amendment process in legislation. The legislation on criminal investigation was reformed from the beginning of 2014. Niemi studies the modernisation of legislation and especially the preparation process by interviewing those involved, among other things. – My purpose is to highlight the different roles and motives of experts. I want to study how experts regard their own roles and how different kinds of input are combined together. An interesting question, for example, is how the relationship between the experts and the politicians participating in the process influences the end result.

As Niemi talks about her research, it is clear that the topics are very important to her. – For a long time, I was driven by my desire to discover, learn and understand new things. Now, it is more important to share my expertise, to mentor young researchers. I share my office with the doctoral candidates who are part of my research group. They give me strength and motivation. In addition, Niemi is trying to learn how to be active in social media. She laughs and says that her most successful post so far involved her Turku-themed Aura River curtains. Furthermore, she opened a new blog in the beginning of 2017. – I have also discovered a great way to learn more about my new home city. On every Monday night, I participate in Nordic walking tours around Turku and the near-by region, organised by a local outdoor association, says Professor Niemi.

READ PROFESSOR NIEMI’S BLOG: WWW.JOHANNANIEMI.WORDPRESS.COM [ 40 ]


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UTU Life and Science 2017  

Science magazine of the University of Turku, Finland. Read more about our research, studies and University community!

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