Research Bulleting


Request to participate in the study

You will be invited to participate in a study that explores human-tree relationships and the meanings of trees. This bulletin describes the research and your contribution to it. For more information, visit the research website or ask more from the contact person. Before answering the research questions, you will be asked for your consent to participate in the research.

Voluntary participation 

Participation in the study is completely voluntary and you can suspend participation at any time. However, if you withdraw your consent, the information you provide may be used as part of the research material.

The purpose of the study 

The purpose of this scientific research is to increase cultural understanding of the meanings of trees to humans.

Communication of research results 

Participants in the study will receive an electronic newsletter informing them of the progress of the study and the results of the study. The research results will be published in research articles, in a PhD. dissertation, on the project’s website and in the science-art exhibition concluding the project.

Duration of the research project 
The study will end in 2023.

Additional Information 
If you have any questions about the research, you can contact the project manager, professor Eeva-Stiina Tuittila (eeva-stiina.tuittila [at]

Contact details of researchers 

Professor Eeva-Stiina Tuittila (research manager and registrar of this study) , University of Eastern Finland, Department of Forest Sciences, PO Box 111, 80101 Joensuu. Tel. +358 50 4424 299, eeva-stiina.tuittila [at] (in english and in finnish)

Dr. Juul Limpens, Plant Ecology and Nature conservation group, Wageningen University, tel. +31 483173 Juul.Limpens [at] (in dutch or in english)

PhD. scholar Kaisa Vainio, University of Eastern Finland, Department of Forest Sciences, PO Box 111, 80101 Joensuu. Tel. +358 50 4780 465, kaisa.vainio [at] (in english and in finnish)


This study processes your personal data in accordance with the applicable data protection legislation (EU General Data Protection Act, 679/2016, and applicable national legislation). The following text describes the issues related to the processing of personal data:

Personal data 

The following personal data is collected about you in the survey: Gender identity, age, place of residence, place of birth, occupation, educational background, frequency of migration, land and forest ownership.  There is an option to leave these questions unanswered.

Contact information is asked for the possible interview: Name, email address, address and telephone number. This is voluntary information.

The purpose of the processing personal data 

The purpose of the processing of personal data is scientific research. The ”Trees Near Us” -project collects information on trees that are important to humans. The study examines the background factors of tree relationships and ways of living with trees. We map out what kind of properties trees have that are special to humans. The questionnaire asks for information about the tree you like, the relationship to the tree, and background information about the respondent.

The basis for processing your personal data is:
The criterion is voluntary and the consent of the data subject.

The duration of the research (processing time of your personal data) is:

Disclosure of information from the research register 

Anonymized material can be handed over to project partners. The material is provided for research use only. Contact or personal information will not be disclosed to third parties.

Your information will not be transferred outside the EU or the EEA.

Because your personal information is processed in this study, you are registered in the personal register created during the study.

Once registered, you have the right to:

  • obtain information on the processing of personal data
  • check your personal information
  • correct your information
  • delete your information (eg. if you withdraw your consent)
  • withdraw your consent to the processing of personal data
  • restrict the processing of your information
  • make a complaint to the Office of the Data Protection Officer if you consider that your personal data has been processed in breach of data protection law
  • there is the obligation of the controller to notify the rectification, erasure or restriction of the processing of personal data

Processing of personal data in  this research does not require the identification of the subject. This is why the right to inspect, rectify, delete, restrict processing, report and transfer data does not apply. Also, personal information collected in the study is not used for automatic decision making.

A Privacy Statement has been prepared for the research. You have right to get acquainted with the data protection statement. You can exercise your rights  mentioned above, by contacting the researchers.


The information and research material collected about you will be treated confidentially as required by law. Individual subjects are assigned an identification code and the information is stored encoded in the study file. The material is pseudonymised for the analysis and the results are reported at the general level, so that an individual cannot be identified. Researches keep the code key, which can be used to identify the data and results of an individual subject, and the information is not given to persons outside the study. The final study results are reported at the group level and it is not possible to identify individual subjects.

The research data and the contact information are stored securely on the server of the University of Eastern Finland  in 2019-2023, after which they are deleted from the server.

What happens to your personal information at the end of the research: 
The research material is anonymized and archived in the archives of the Finnish Forest Museum Lusto.

The material can be used for other studies later. Your name and contact information will not be associated with the material. After archiving, the material is managed by Lusto, which issues permits to use the material for research purposes. Subjects have the right, if they so wish, to be informed of who has used the material available.