Research projects 18

Land is a powerful asset, but it also has a social function. Its economic and social aspects are central in advancing gender equality. Legal control of land as well as legal and social recognition of women’s uses of and rights to land, can also have catalytic effects of empowerment, increasing women’s influence and status in their homes and communities. During past decades changes in the Chinese land tenure rights and practices have brought important incentives for rural developments including farmer income and living standards. However, rural women’s land rights are still not adequately implemented. Despite modernization, China is administratively and socially very hierarchical. Foucault's idea of power provides a better starting point for looking at the use of power at the grassroots level than the hierarchical conception of power. Although the Communist Party has significant hierarchical power, at the village level, there are several parties involved in the exercise of power with different motives and perceptions. Regarding to methodology, many researchers have utilized government and other official material to explain certain phenomenon. This research is mainly based on interviews because they can provide an insight that might otherwise be invisible in official documents. This research uses an intersectional approach to qualitative content analysis. It allows the exploration of numerous intersection themes simultaneously. For example, according to this research, age, marital status, location, and gender play an important role in women’s equality situation.

Team

This research concerns socio-technical issues for providing solar electricity into rural India. Several solar pico-grid systems have been implemented in villages accompanied with comprehensive data collection, field-trips, interviews, and analysis. Research questions have included behavioural aspects with use of solar electricity in the rural context, system reliability, and system optimisations. Key results include observations that reliability need more attention and local training, i.e. strengthening frugality aspects; demand response of the rural population showed less correlation with access to solar electricity.

Team

Sini Numminen, Semee Yoon, Johannes Urpelainen

Emerging technologies such as affordable smart phones with 4G access, broadband internet, and interactive interfaces employing gestures or speech, are revolutionizing the ways we access information, learn new skills and interact with the world around us. However, developing world communities - who stand to benefit from such technologies - were, until recently, largely neglected. Interactive technologies provide a means to address learning challenges such as functional illiteracy and information access barriers, and can improve learning and education, health and wellbeing, and agricultural practices.

Team

Markku Turunen, Jaakko Hakulinen, Mikko Ruohonen, Sumita Sharma, Pekka Kallioniemi, Juhani Linna

The doctoral research project targets to understand the relevance of frugal and affordable energy innovations in sustainable energy transitions among low-income communities in emerging economies. The target technology is solar micro-grids in India. The various related sustainability challenges are studied as well as the role of distributed energy in the country's energy mix among rural energy users. Key methods include field trials, interviews, data analysis and sustainability and reliability assessments.

Team

  • Head of research Lindström, Kristina
  • Language n/a

The overall aim of the project is to improve productivity, livelihoods, nutrition and household wellbeing in Ghana and Uganda, while counteracting environmental degradation and mineral depletion caused by monocultures. The study will address both the individual farm level and the rural community level. Introducing the use of biofertilizers through a participatory process can highlight the potential of location-based resources, and empower the community more widely.

Team

Sumelius John (Project manager, Lindström Kristina (Principal investigator), Benjamin Ahiabor, John Baptist Tumuhairwe, Åsa Frostegård, Aserse Aregu (Participant), Vihinen Hilkka (Project manager), Sell Mila (Project manager), Sipiläinen Timo (Participant), Bäckman, Stefan, (Participant) Rosengren, Linda (Other)

RespMat studies fetal and childhood physical, psychosocial and environmental determinants of a key non-communicable disease, obstructive airways disease, in 15-year-olds and their mothers in rural Bangladesh, a least-developed and fragile country.

Team

Eero Kajantie, Pieta Näsänen-Gilmore

The collaboration between UEF and KNAU aims to provide an enabling environment for teaching fisheries and aquaculture, at both vocational and bachelor level, by training of trainers, developing teaching and study material and developing the teaching infrastructure at KNAU. The main activities of FishEDU are: 1) training of trainers on fisheries and aquaculture subjects and pedagogics 2) piloting of courses in two newly developed curricula and development of course material 3) establishment of an aquaculture demonstration fish farm and training centre and an e-library.

Team

Professor Raine Kortet, Professor Sari Havu-Nuutinen, University Lecturer Liisa Nurminen, Project Researcher Sofiia Nishaeva, Project Researcher Oksana Skaldina

  • Head of research Sara Lindeman
  • Language n/a

The world needs hands on solutions to wicked problems such as climate change, resource scarcity and poverty, and we need to nd the pathways that enable such solutions to emerge. To maintain competitiveness in the future, Finland needs to improve it’s capacity to innovate and collaborate in new ways, to provide holistic and sustainable solutions to global challenges, both in emerging markets as well as disruptive new approaches to service provision in Europe. New global studies frugal and reverse innovations in complex global systems.

Team

Minna Halme, Teija Lehtonen, Jarkko Levänen, Helena Sandman, Emma Nkonoki, Tatu Lyytinen, Anne Hyvärinen, Sini Numminen, Sini Suomalainen, Marleen Wierenga, Marko Keskinen, Peter Lund, Olli Varis

Bringing together advanced mobile voice-based technology, service providers and rural people of India in a tailored ecosystem is a unique project both in scale and in approach. Our project – RuralVoice – focuses on the development and deployment of voice-based services in agriculture, healthcare, education, entertainment and banking for the 220 million illiterate and underprivileged Indians that reside in the rural area. In our Indo-Finnish project consortium we are also building sustainable development and inclusive business opportunities for service- and technology companies both in India and in Europe. Keywords: Sustainable development, India, base of the pyramid, frugal innovations, voice-based services, illiterate people, mobile applications, participation, collaboration, localisation

Team

Mikko Ruohonen, Markku Turunen, Juhani Linna, Sumita Sharma, Nicholas Mavengere, Gururaj Mahajan, Jaakko Hakulinen, Pekka Kallioniemi, Vivek Kumar, Himadri Das (India), Amit Nanavati (India), Nitendra Rajput (India)

  • Head of research Jyrki Luukkanen
  • Language n/a

The objective of institutional partnership stemmed from the need for capacity building in the field of energy and environmental education in the Faculty of Engineering in the National University of Laos. Networking between teachers and researchers in Laos and Finland has provided possibilities for improved curriculum development and exchange of expertise within a new Sustainable Energy Futures Programme.

Team

Jyrki Luukkanen (FFRC), Venla Kinnunen (FFRC), Jari Kaivo-Oja (FFRC), Mika Korkeakoski (FFRC), Khampone Nanthavong (NUOL), Sengraty Kythavone (NUOL), Xayphone Houngboungnouang (NUOL), Yrjö Majanne (TUT), Juha Leppänen (Tamlink Ltd.), Suvisanna Mustonen (TUT)