Sari Puustinen profile picture
Senior Research Fellow, Finland Futures Research Centre (FFRC)
Docent, Faculty of Humanities
Doctor of Science (Architecture)
BIODIFUL - Biodiversity Respectful Leadership. A research project funded by SRC 2022-2027. PI of WP 5 "Systemic transformation for biodiversity – finding institutional barriers and solutions".

Areas of expertise

Sustainable development
urban planning
urban studies
perceived safety


I work as a Senior Research Fellow at the Finland Futures Research Centre. I am a teacher in charge and coordinator of the University of Turku Sustainable Development training program (KEKO). I also work as a docent (adjunct professor) at the Department of Landscape Studies of the Faculty of Humanitie

I graduated as a Master of Political Science and Doctor of Science (architecture). I have worked as a researcher and teacher at the Helsinki University of Technology, University of Helsinki, Aalto University and the University of Turku. In 2010 I worked as a visiting researcher at Politecnico di Milano, Italy.


I coordinate and teach the Sustainable Development Studies (KEKO) at the University of Turku.  Sustainable Development Studies is a multidisciplinary Minor (secondary subject) for all students of the University of Turku. It transforms students to Sustainable Development  agents by engaging them into process of creating collective sustainability expertise.

Sustainable Development Studies (25 ECTS) consists of a core course (10 ECTS) spanning for 8 months, as well as a selection of optional courses (15 ECTS). The optional courses offer perspectives to sustainability from social and natural sciences, law, humanistic and business angles. The teamwork-based core course immerses students of different disciplines into interdisciplinary research collaboration, integrating the four dimensions of sustainability and providing the skills for advancing Sustainable Development in the working life.

In 2018 KEKO was Finland's candidate for the UNESCO Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development

In 2019-2020 I was involved in MEC-funded Climate University - project, which aims to build e-learning courses on climate change, sustainable development and systemic transformation. I lead the work on building a multidisciplinary online course.

I have worked as a teacher at Aalto University, Aalto EE, University of Helsinki and University of Turku. I have taught, inter alia, qualitative research methodology, communication and urban planning.


I work as Senior Research Fellow at the Finland Futures Research Center.

My background being in social sciences, I am a scholar of Urban Planning and Design and Urban Studies.

My research interests are broadly related to how the topic of sustainable development can be better integrated into Finnish society and administration. Throughout my research career, I have done multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research in various research groups.

From 2022 to 2027, I will be the PI of Work Package 5 of the SRC-funded BIODIFUL research project at the Finland Futures Research Centre. The title of the work package is "Systemic Transformation for biodiversity - finding institutional barriers and solutions".

In 2021, I was PI of the research project “Impact of the Pandemic on Leisure Services and Facilities”.

From 2016 to 2017 I contributed building Turku Complex Systems Institute and was leading its Future Cities and Communities research program.

I have studied urban planning from different perspectives; both at the system level and through individual themes. My research topics have been, among other things, strategic planning in urban areas, feasibility of The Land Use and Building Act, communicative planning theories, participation, land use conflicts and their solutions, the planning profession and its development in Finland, changes in the concept of Public Interest in land use planning, the effects of New Public Management in administration of land use planning, security-oriented planning and prevention of crime in residential areas, densification of urban structure and the quality of housing. I have also made housing, construction and housing policy-related research and development work.

I am an alternate member of the Finnish National Commission on Sustainable Development (2016-2019) and an alternate member of the National Council for Crime Prevention (2015-2018).


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Addressing the biodiversity crisis via leadership – An interdisciplinary review, concept development & research agenda (Presentation at the Corporate Responsibility Research Conference (CRRC) 2023) (2023)

Corporate Responsibility Research Conference, CRRC
Teerikangas Satu, Sääksjärvi Ilari, Räikkönen Juulia, Salo Matti, Uusitalo Outi, Pecoraro Maria, Onkila Tiina, Puustinen Sari, Uusitalo Ville, Mäkelä Marileena, Unkila Milla, Salo Mia, Tyrväinen Liisa, Hopia Anu, Rouhiainen Henna, Svels Stina, Grenman Miia, Kuhmonen Irene, Ahvenharju Sanna, Lauttamäki Ville, Järviö Natasha, Tuomasjukka Saska, Turunen Marja, Veijalainen Anu, Sorakunnas Esko, Lappalainen Roni, Lappalainen Otto, Walhsten Aliisa, Luoma Tommi, Hakulinen Anna, Oksanen Hanna, Möksy Juulia, Kervinen Ville, Lehtovaara Katri
(Muu (O2))