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Ari Hynynen

Professor, arkkitehtuuri- ja kaupunkitutkimus

About me

I am Professor of Architectural and Urban Research (Alvar Aalto Chair) at Tampere University, Faculty of Built Environment, Unit of Architecture. I have been the director of the Seinäjoki Urban Laboratory since 2009. In my doctoral dissertation from the year 2000, I studied local potential of urban planning from the standpoint of ecological modernisation. My post-doctoral research 2001-2004 dealt with issues of spatial integration of immigrants in urban contexts. 2005-2009 I was the co-founder and leader of the university’s EDGE laboratory, which was specialised in analysing and modelling urban structures and processes by using GIS methods and developing new ones. In my recent work, I have explored topical issues of urban and regional development, and led several projects and consortiums as a principal investigator. My publications cover a wide range of topics from Alvar Aalto’s design approach to the development of railway station areas.

Fields of expertise

Urban planning, urban development, architectural theory

Project links

Main positions of trust

2018-2021, Member of an expert panel, Publication Forum, Finland.

2001–2003, 2008–2010, 2016-2019, Board Member of the Nordic Association of Architectural Research.

2010-2013, Member of the Scientific Board, Tampere University of Technology.

Mission statement

The Alvar Aalto Chair is a chair at the Tampere University, Unit of Architecture, located in the University Consortium of Seinäjoki. The scope of the chair is architectural and urban research: more precisely urban and regional development and renovation of post-war architecture and urban environments.

The chair is part of the Epanet network, which consists of 20 professors from six universities in Western Finland. The aim of the network is to entrench research activity in South Ostrobothnia and have the researchers engaged in interdisciplinary collaboration with each other, and especially with business and industry, educational institutions and local government.

The Alvar Aalto Chair embraces the development of the regional innovation environment of building, design and planning. Important partners include the City of Seinäjoki as well as other cities and municipalities of the region, Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences, the other Epanet chairs and companies of the regional construction cluster. Scientific partners include domestic and foreign universities, and naturally other units of Tampere University.

Collaboration in R&D projects increases the know-how of the actors and provides new business opportunities. Many cities already consider their built environment a significant success factor.

In addition to launching and leading projects, the job description of the chair includes supervision of doctoral students and diverse expert tasks. Collaboration with international universities allows the region access to the latest scientific knowledge and the chair also produces new and interesting results for the international scientific community.

Research topics

Circular and bio-economy in urban development

Timber building
Food planning

Resilience and adaptability of cities

Cities as innovation environments
Small towns and middle-sized cities

Human centered architecture theory

Organic design and planning theories
Alvar Aalto’s design approach

Research unit

Seinäjoki Urban Laboratory: see links below

Selected publications