Finnish Society of Forest Science awards annually prizes for excellent doctoral and Master’s theses accepted during the preceding year. The awards are made among the theses proposed by the Department of Forest Sciences at the University of Helsinki and the School of Forest Sciences at the University of Eastern Finland. The number of awards is not fixed but depends on the quality of the theses proposed in each year. Typically, the Society awards 1-2 prizes for excellent doctoral dissertations and 1-3 prizes for excellent M.Sc. theses.
The prizes of 2021 were published in the Spring meeting of the Society on 6 April 2021. Dissertation prize awardees gave a talk on their theses. The presentation recordings will be uploaded on this page.
Prize for an excellent doctoral dissertation
Jiri Pyörälä, University of Helsinki. Assessing wood properties in standing timber with laser scanning. https://doi.org/10.14214/df.295
Dr Jiri Pöyrälä’s doctoral dissertation is multidisciplinary combining remote sensing, forest management planning and wood science. His work is innovative applying forest remote sensing to new problems. He brings the traditional remote sensing of stands and trees inside the forest and studies the tree organs. Jiri Pyörälä develops methods for studying in situ such individual tree properties that are described by modelling in traditional remote sensing based forest mensuration. The pre-examiners and the opponent of Jiri Pyörälä in the public defence paid special attention to the originality of the research problem and management of complex research problems. The dissertation was approved with distinction. In relation to the current requirements set for dissertations, the doctoral dissertation of Jiri Pyörälä is extensive. The dissertation is based on five partial publications. On the hand, the dissertation is an appropriately defined and clear entirety.
The dissertation summary article of Dr Pyörälä’s work was published as volume 295 in Dissertationes Forestales, which is a dissertation monograph series published by the Finnish Society of Forest Science, the University of Helsinki, and the University of Eastern Finland. It is open access with CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence.
Recording of the talk of Jiri Pyörälä on his award-winning thesis in the Spring Meeting of the Finnish Society of Forest Science can be viewed here.
Kaisa Rissanen, University of Helsinki. Scots pine resin and BVOC emissions in relation to tree water dynamics. https://doi.org/10.14214/df.283
Dr Kaisa Rissanen studied the effects of environmental factors and tree physiology on functions of resin and emissions of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs). The results may be applied for improving models of VOCs and they enhance understanding of the effects of environmental factors on defensive mechanisms of Scots pine. Emissions of BVOCs have an impact on climate warming by modifying the dynamics of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere e.g., the residence time of methane in the atmosphere, aerosol cloud formation, and albedo. The dissertation is innovative: The BVOC emissions from tree stems is a little studied phenomenon. Kaisa Rissanen developed new methods for measuring resin pressure and following BVOC emissions with continuously running mass spectrometers and dynamic chambers. She had an independent role in the development of the methodology, data analysis and writing. Structural equation models (SEMs) were used in data analysis for revealing the direct and indirect environmental effects (interactions, causalities) on BVOC emissions. The dissertation was accepted with distinction. The dissertation is composed of four articles. Kaisa Rissanen is the first author in all of them.
The dissertation summary article of Dr Rissanen’s work was published as volume 283 in Dissertationes Forestales, which is a dissertation monograph series published by the Finnish Society of Forest Science, the University of Helsinki, and the University of Eastern Finland. It is open access with CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence.
Recording of the talk of Kaisa Rissanen on her award-winning thesis in the Spring Meeting of the Finnish Society of Forest Science can be viewed here.
Prize for an excellent M.Sc. thesis
Hanna Joronen, University of Eastern Finland. Taivutusmurtolujuuteen ja kimmokertoimeen vaikuttavat tekijät hieskoivulla nuorpuussa ja aikuispuussa sekä niiden mallintaminen lineaarisella sekamallilla. [Factors affecting bending strength and modulus of elasticity in juvenile and mature wood of downy birch and modelling them with linear mixed-effect models.] https://erepo.uef.fi/handle/123456789/23573 (in Finnish)
Hanna Joronen made her master’s degree with specialisation in forest, energy and wood technology. Her thesis is extensive. Hanna Joronen knows the pertinent literature well and applies this knowledge in an excellent manner in her thesis. The work includes demanding data analyses applying a linear mixed model approach. The modelling is especially well done at the master’s level. Presentation, use of Finnish language and finalisation of the thesis are excellent. Hanna Joronen shows that she can manage and analyse large data sets. The discussion of the thesis shows maturity in the comparison of own results with prior knowledge.