Career Updates

Erik Andersson appointed professor

Erik Andersson is principal researcher at the Stockholm Resilience Centre and now even professor at Helsinki University.

Will move to a professor position at University of Helsinki but keep a foot with the Centre

Story highlights

  • Erik Andersson is an internationally recognised environmental scientist and urban scholar with expertise in landscape studies, urban issues, systems thinking, biodiversity conservation and more
  • The professor position at University of Helsinki is an opportunity for him to establish and develop a long-term research programme and continue to invest in the interface between science and policy
  • In particular, he will continue to explore the interactions and frictions between the social, ecological and technological layers overlaying nay landscape and especially our cities

Centre researcher Erik Andersson is moving on to a professorship at University of Helsinki University, a position affiliated with the Ecosystems and Environment Research Programme at the Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences. He will, however, also continue his position as principal researcher at the Stockholm Resilience Centre, part time.

As an internationally recognised sustainability scientist and systems thinker with a background in natural resources management and systems ecology he has focused his efforts on landscape studies, ecosystem services and urban sustainability, as well as engagement and collaboration with civic, public and private actors.

I hope the professor position will give me a stronger mandate for long-term, strategic work, allowing me to both invest more time and resources in my own research and my lab, and engage in large-scale science-policy processes, like IPBES, the IPCC equivalent for biodiversity.

Erik Andersson

Work at the intersection of landscapes

“I hope the professor position will give me a stronger mandate for long-term, strategic work, allowing me to both invest more time and resources in my own research and my lab, and engage in large-scale science-policy processes, like IPBES, the IPCC equivalent for biodiversity,” says Andersson.

As part of the new position, he will continue to explore different types of social-ecological boundaries that intersect landscapes and shape their use and identities.

“Fragmentation and disconnect are cross cutting, ubiquitous challenges, and I hope to build a better understanding of their nature and dynamics. Especially cities are all about boundaries and edges – planning sectors, land ownership, actor interests, green infrastructure - and this has to be turned into a strength rather than an obstacle,” explains Andersson.

Before accepting the position at University of Helsinki, Andersson was in January this year also appointed extraordinary professor of the North-West University in South Africa, at their research unit for Environmental Sciences and Management.

City meets nature

Even though Erik Andersson has done most of his research in or near cities, he is an inveterate outdoor recreationist, birdwatcher and lover of deep forests. He started out as an ecologist and geographer but has over the years worked across various disciplines to seek the answers to real-world problems and needs. Today, he has more than 75 peer-reviewed publications in scientific journals, five book chapters and multiple technical reports and popular science items.

Andersson is one of several centre researchers who have recently been promoted to professors. Earlier in 2022, Magnus Nyström and Örjan Bodin were appointed professors. This follows similar appointments of Line Gordon and Beatrice Crona in 2021, and Maja Schlüter in late 2020.


Published: 2022-10-21