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The Geological Survey of Finland (GTK) and the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) intensify their cooperation in projects both nationally and especially internationally. Both institutions are internationally recognised for their scientific excellence; GTK in the field of geological natural resources and Luke in the sustainable use of natural resources. The cooperation between GTK and Luke started within the cooperation body of ten Finnish government research institutes (Tulanet) that promotes interdisciplinary research and expert work.

The GTK-Luke cooperation will support both organisations to better meet the demands set by international tenders which require a broad set of skills to meet the SDGs and respond to transformations in natural resource management. GTK and Luke are spearheading this concept that targets larger projects with other Tulanet members.

“Our competences complement one another perfectly. The socio-economic and environmental challenges are so systemic and multifaceted that they cannot be addressed with research competence in only one specific field. We are now able to look at the challenges from a broader perspective and find more effective solutions,” says Philipp Schmidt-Thomé, Head of International Projects at GTK.

“The challenges involved with the sustainable use of natural resources and environmentally wise solutions are global and growing in significance. Closer cooperation and broader partner networks help us to innovate more effective solutions, which in turn strengthens our international impact,” says John Kettle, Director, Sales & International Relations at Luke.

One of successful joint projects was improving food security in Ethiopia through enhancing the soil fertility using own mineral resource. The project was implemented during 2014-2018 and funded by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland promoted instrument called ‘ICI’.

People working in a field in Ethiopia.
The Geological Survey of Finland and the Natural Resources Institute Finland are internationally recognised for their scientific excellence, GTK in the field of geological natural resources and Luke in the sustainable use of natural resources. One successful cooperation was carried out in Ethiopia. Photo Tegist Chernet, GTK.

“The project investigated the quantity and quality (suitability) of lime resources and their effect on soil pH, health and fertility to increase crop yield and nutrition value. Through appropriate application of lime, a mineral resource nearby, we were able to correct the soil pH, soil structure and water retention ability. As a result, crop yield considerably increased while minimizing the use of phosphate-based fertilizer by nearly 50%. We have done experiments on the smallholder farmers land, working together with the farmers and extension service providers and other stakeholders, at the same time providing on-job-trainings. By the end of the project, we have documented soil analytical data, guideline for proper application of lime and fertilizers at our counterpart institutions. Information was disseminated to several stockholders and country’s government level through meetings and workshops. This bottom-up approach worked well in the area,” says Project Manager Tegist Chernet, Senior Researcher at GTK.

GTK carries out over 300 projects annually. The subject areas include survey of minerals and natural resources, geochemistry, geophysics and environmental technology, sustainable mining, and adapting to climate change. Luke has more than 700 projects under way annually to promote the sustainable use of natural resources, of which more than one hundred are EU-funded projects.

Last week, the Finnish Arctic Research Community cooperation in the Lapland area between the University of Lapland, Lapland University of Applied Sciences, GTK and Luke was announced. The cooperation enhances the research, development, and innovation services for companies from Lapland.


Geological Survey of Finland: Solutions for more sustainable growth

The Geological Survey of Finland (GTK) produces impartial and objective research data and services in support of decision-making in industry, academia, and wider society. GTK employs more than 400 experts specialising in the mineral economy, circular economy, solutions related to energy, water and the environment, as well as digital solutions. GTK is a research institution governed by the Finnish Ministry of Employment and the Economy, operating in Finland and globally.

Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke)

Natural Resources Institute Finland is an organization with over 1200 researchers and experts. It promotes bioeconomy and sustainable use of natural resources.