Past Events

Past Events

6th Karelia Symposium 13 April 2021 – Health from wood

The University of Eastern Finland (UEF) and Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänänen’s Fund organized the 6th Karelia Symposium under the theme “Health from wood”.

This time the symposium was an online event (Microsoft Teams).

The theme of the symposium covers the effect of wooden materials on health in construction, and the potential of trees as a source material for health-promoting products. The research of trees as a source of health has been strengthening in recent years. The symposium offers research and practical insight into the topic by leading experts in the field.

Posters were invited and the poster topics were presented with 1-minute pitch talks in the symposium.  Grant decisions for wood science research at UEF, provided by Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänänen’s Fund, were published in Karelia Symposium.

Keynote speakers 2021

  • Mike Burnard (University of Primorska): Health benefits from using wood materials in building
  • Marko Hyttinen (University of Eastern Finland): Volatile organic compounds in wood buildings
  • Kalervo Väänänen (University of Turku): Medicines and health products from tree-derived substances
  • Ari Pappinen (University of Eastern Finland): Developing the value chain of Inonotus obliquus (pakuri)
  • Paavo Heikkinen (Repolar Pharmaceuticals Oy): Benefits of tree resin products in human and animal health care
  • Heli Peltola (University of Eastern Finland): Sustainable forestry provides multiple services and products

The keynote presentations can be found at the Programme page for one week (14 April – 20 April 2021).

Poster presentations 2021

  • Karri Ramesh: Plywood of Bio Adhesives and Natural Fibers
  • Anu Laakkonen: Value Network of Non-Timber Forest Products and Services Derived from Birch
  • Kati Riekkinen: New solutions for improving food microbiological safety
  • Umme Sara Santona: Selected bio-based distillates to control liverwort growth
  • Arttu Sivula: The Effect of Relative Humidity on Wood Emissions
  • Gargi Tariyal: Healing Traits of Wood in the Himalayas
  • Virpi Virjamo: Piperidine alkaloids – antimicrobial activity and distribution of individual compounds in Norway spruce

The poster presentations can be found from the Posters at Karelia Symposium 13 April 2021 page for one week (14 April – 20 April 2021).

The winner of the vote for best poster presentation was Gargi Tariyal with the poster “Healing Traits of Wood in the Himalayas”. Her poster received 20 votes from the total of 44 votes. Tariyal was awarded with a grant of EUR 300. The second place was shared by Anu Laakkonen (“Value Network of Non-Timber Forest Products and Services Derived from Birch”) and Virpi Virjamo (“Piperidine alkaloids – antimicrobial activity and distribution of individual compounds in Norway spruce”) whose posters both received 7 votes.


5. Karelia Symposium – Puutuotteiden uusi tulevaisuus, 2019

Järjestyksessään viides Karelia Symposium pidettiin Joensuussa Tiedepuistolla 8.4.2019.  Symposiumin teemana oli puusta tehtävien uusien tuotteiden tutkimuksen ja tuottamisen kehittyvät näkymät alan johtavien asiantuntijoiden esittämänä. Biotaloudessa on käynnissä siirtyminen fossiilipohjaisista tuotteista yhä enemmän uusiutuvista ja kierrätettävistä raaka-aineista tehtäviin tuotteisiin. Tämä vaatii uutta perus- ja soveltavaa tutkimusta sekä innovaatiotoimintaa, jotka kohdistuvat sellaisiin tuotteisiin, kuten puukuidusta tehtävät tekstiilit, puumateriaaleihin perustuvat biomuovit ja biokomposiitit, sekä muut erityispuutuotteet. Näihin tuotteisiin kohdistuu huomattava kansainvälinen markkinapotentiaali.  Symposiumin yhteydessä järjestettiin posterinäyttely ja julkistettiin Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänäsen rahaston apurahojen saajat.

Keynote speakers 2019

  • Dr. Tobias Keplinger (ETH Zürich): Advanced Wood Materials – Rethinking the Use of Trees
  • Research professor Ali Harlin (VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland): Does wood replace plastics or is wood a new plastics?
  • Assistant professor Lauri Rautkari (Aalto University): Current wood research at Aalto University
  • CEO Jukka Kantola (Kaicell): New life of pulp mills
  • Associate professor Antti Haapala (University of Eastern Finland): Wood Materials Science – the regional network of biomass research
  • Professor Reijo Lappalainen (University of Eastern Finland): Wood-based composite materials

Poster presentations 2019

  • Aitor Barbero López et al.: Activity of coffee silverskin residue against common wood-decaying fungi
  • Md Mokbul Hossain et al.: Pyrolysis distillate constituents against wood-decaying fungi
  • Yeray Manuel López Gómez et al.: Eucalypt treated with spent coffee against the white rot fungus Coriolus versicolor
  • Sergio Martínez-Suñer et al.: Wooden T-Joints Shear Strength Analysis and Modelling 5G tower application
  • Omolara Mofikoya et al.: High Resolution Mass Spectrometry Characterization of Essential Oil and Extractives from Spruce Sprout
  • Ayobami Salami et al.: High-efficiency separation and purification by molecular distillation
  • Yan Wang et al.: Construction of tools to convert wood residues efficiently to biofuels
  • Qing Zhao et al.: Recovery of Valuable Chemical Compounds from Birch Outer Bark by Slow pyrolysis, Solvent extraction, and Alkaline hydrolysis
  • Rulong Cao et al.: Effects of thremo-mechanical modification on mechanical properties and water reasistance of plantation-grown Vietnamese acacia mangium and hevea brasiliensis
  • Nikolaos Papamatthaiakis et al.: Cultivation, chemical and physical properties of Sidia hermaphrodita and Igniscum sp. as raw material for pellet production (presentation not available)
  • Jorma Heikkinen et al. (did not participate the competition for the best poster award): Sensors and measurement techniques for bioeconomy
  • The winner of the vote for best poster presentation was Qing Zhao. Her poster received 25 votes. Zhao was awarded with a grant of EUR 300. On the second place was Sergio Martínez-Suñerwhose poster received 23 votes. Aitor Barbero López’s poster was third with 10 votes. Altogether 79 votes were given.


4th Karelia Symposium – Building with Wood: Citius, altius, levius, 2018

The University of Eastern Finland (UEF) and Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänänen’s Fund organized the 4th Karelia Symposium under the theme “Building with Wood: faster, higher, lighter”. Symposium took place in Kuopio, on April 26th 2018.

Key note lectures of the morning session covered the environmental impacts of urban construction, challenges and opportunities of wood as a construction material, and utilization of innovative hybrid structures and digitalization in light-weight building construction. The afternoon was dedicated to the researchers of the UEF. Selected PhD and MSc students working in the field of wood materials science presented their topical research projects.

Keynote speakers 2018

  • Leif Gustavsson (Linnaeus University, Ruotsi): Climate effects of residential buildings in a lifecycle perspective
  • Jussi Mattila (Betoniteollisuus ry): Strengths and opportunities of wood as a construction material
  • Petri Heino (Ympäristöministeriö): Threats and weaknesses of wood as a construction material
  • Christopher Robeller (University of Kaiserslautern, Saksa): New era of construction using innovative hybrid structures

Poster presentations 2018

  • Afrin Jahan Adiba: Global warming effects on growth of Northern woody species
  • Aitor Barbero-López: Antifungal activity of chemicals derived from forestry side streams
  • Jorma Heikkinen: Slow pyrolysis of wood
  • Mohammed Noyazzesh Hossain
  • Reijo Lappalainen: Wood-based and hemp-based biochars for water purification
  • Yoko Lu: Development for blade wood technology for small windmill in developing countries: Case study in Nepal
  • Juhani Marttila: Decay resistance of wood after thermo-mecanical modification
  • Gargi Tariyal: Applying the science of wood construction into building of 5G network smartpoles
  • Laura Tomppo: NDT applications of wood

Student presentations 2018

  • Eija-Katriina Uusi-Tarkka: Innovative biodegradable composites
  • Aitor Barbero Lopez: Natural antifungals for wood preservation
  • Jeannine Scharfe: Effect of wooden transmission mast structure on the electromagnetic signal attenuation

The 3rd Karelia Symposium: Unlimited Possibilities of Wood, 2017

On 25 April 2017, the University of Eastern Finland (UEF) and Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänänen’s Fund organized the 3rd Karelia Symposium under the theme “Unlimited Possibilities of Wood”.

Keynote lectures of the morning session were given by top European experts. The topics covered the secrets of wood microstructure, biorefining wood biomasses, innovative wood-based building solutions, and health and well-being effects of wood products. Afternoon was dedicated to the rising stars of the UEF: PhD and MSc students working in the field of wood materials science presented their topical research projects. Furthermore, Symposium included a poster exhibition, where people presented their research findings in the field of wood materials science. The best poster was awarded. Grant decisions for wood science research at the University of Eastern Finland, provided by Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänänen’s Fund, were published in the Karelia Symposium.

Keynote speakers 2017

  • Professor Dr. Lennart Salmén, RISE, Sweden: Treasures in Wood Microstructure
  • Research Director Dr. Niklas von Weymarn,Metsä Fibre, Finland: From a Kraft Pulp Mill to a Bioproduct Mill
  • Professor Dr. Ing. Peer Haller, Technical University of Dresden, Germany: Wood in Top Form – New Perspectives in Construction
  • Associate Professor Dr. Andreja Kutnar, University of Primorska, Slovenia: Health and Well-Being Effects of Wood Products
  • Mezbah Uddin: Imporiving fire retardancy of wood with selected protein and inorganic coating
  • Aitor Barbero López: Can used ground coffee beans be used as wood preservatives?
  • Soumaya Chibily: Bio-preservation of wood
  • Anni Harju: Automated stilbene UV fluorescence measurement
  • Tianran Ding: Effect of recycled tannins in wood preservation
  • Hanna Joronen: Bending strength of Betula pubescens juvenile and mature wood
  • Bright Asante: Adsorption of tannins onto functionalized nanocellulose

Student presentations 2017

  • Juhani Marttila: Improved properties for wood by thermomechanical modification
  • Kimmo Laitinen: Improving corrosion resistance of coatings by wood distillate treatment
  • Chenyang Cai: Effects of wetting exposure on the structure and properties of thermally modified wood
  • Tianran Ding: Life cycle assessment of tannin-nanocellulose impregnated wood
  • Mezbah Uddin: Improving the fire retardancy of wood with selected proteins and inorganic compounds
  • Kalle Kiviranta: Fire properties of wood-plastic composites (WPCs) modified with wood distillate

2nd Karelia Symposium: State of the Wood

Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänänen’s Fund and the University of Eastern Finland organised a scientific symposium presenting the latest international progress in wood research. On 18 April 2016, the Karelia Symposium was organised for the second time, now under the theme “State-of-the-wood”.

The symposium presented research on innovative, wood-based materials and products as well as new techniques and processes in the context of bioeconomy. The symposium consisted of two scientific sessions with internationally renowned experts as speakers. Ongoing thesis and other wood research projects at the University of Eastern Finland were also presented in a poster session. In connection with the symposium, the scholarships of the Heikki Väänänen Fund were awarded for wood research at the University of Eastern Finland. The symposium ended with a cocktail party.

Speakers of the 2nd Karelia Symposium

  • Dr. Juha S. Niemelä, Natural Resources Department, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry – Opening of the symposium
  • Prof. Dr. Til Opatz, Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz, Germany – Xylochemistry – using wood-based starting materials for chemical synthesis
  • Dr. Josefin Illergård, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden – Biointeractive (antibacterial) cellulose fibers
  • PhD student Ayobami Salami, Department of Applied Physics, UEF, Finland – Extraction and chemical analysis of bioactive molecules from selected African trees
  • PhD student Parvathy Venugopal, School of Forest Sciences, UEF, Finland – Comparative heartwood phenolics’ analysis of different Scots pine deadwood types
  • Prof. Claus Felby, University of Copenhagen, Denmark – Biofuels for the maritime sector -technology and feedstocks
  • Prof. Ning Yan, University of Toronto, Canada – Value-added green chemicals and bio-products from bark residues


1. Karelia symposium: Uuden sukupolven puu

Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänäsen rahasto ja Itä-Suomen yliopisto järjestivät puun tutkimuksen uusia kansainvälisiä edistysaskelia esittelevän tieteellisen konferenssin Joensuussa 13.4.2015. Ensimmäisen Karelia Symposiumin teemana oli “Uuden sukupolven puu”.

Puun uusia käyttömuotoja ja puubiomassan tuotantoa biotaloudessa valottava symposium koostui kahdesta tieteellisestä sessiosta, joiden aiheena olivat lignoselluloosan uudet käyttötarkoitukset ja analysointimenetelmät, sekä puubiomassan resurssitehokkaat tuotantoratkaisut. Lisäksi järjestettiin posterinäyttely, jossa esiteltiin aiheeseen liittyviä ajankohtaisia tutkimushankkeita ja opinnäytetöitä.

Symposiumin yhteydessä jaettiin Teollisuusneuvos Heikki Väänäsen rahaston apurahat Itä-Suomen yliopistossa tehtävää puuhun liittyvää tutkimusta varten. Symposiumin jälkeen järjestettiin cocktail-tilaisuus. Symposiumin kieli oli englanti.