Photo of sunlight at nature

Project investigates paths towards a nature positive society


The EU- funded project BIOTraCes has officially started. The project aims to increase biological diversity throughout Europe. To address nature-related, societal and local political issues, researchers will conduct nine case studies in areas that have a particularly large impact on biodiversity: food production, agriculture, forestry, water and fish conservation as well as urbanisation.

Photo of Marie Stenseke
Marie Stenseke, Professor in Human Geography, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg.

BIOTraCes stands for Biodiversity and Transformative Change for plural and nature positive societies. The aim of BIOTraCes is to contribute to a more inclusive, efficient, and fair public policy, where local strategies and interests for biodiversity are taken into account. The researchers participating in the project will examine how, for example, culture, religion and economics lead to potential power locks and leverages.

- It is important for us to understand the behavioural patterns that have caused the dramatic loss of biological diversity, and also the potential for positive changes says Marie Stenseke, Professor in Human Geography at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg.

From the School of Business, Economics and Law, researchers in Human Geography participate and will conduct one of the studies, with a focus on private forest owners in southern Sweden. Swedish forestry is a hot topic and many debate the issue on an overall level.

- In this study, we will examine how the forest owners themselves view sustainable forestry on their land and solutions that reduce climate impact and favour biological diversity, says Marie Stenseke.

Major investment in research in biological diversity

Marie Stenseke is also active in two major interdisciplinary research programmes, where researchers in Economics and Ecology work together to increase knowledge and develop new models for the promotion of biodiversity.

One is the research programme BIOPATH - Pathways for an efficient alignment of the Financial System with the needs of Biodiversity, which addresses the challenges of the business world linked to biodiversity. The research programme was granted SEK 50 million from Mistra in spring 2022 and will last for four years. From the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg, researchers in Business Administration, Economics, Law, and Human Geography participate.

The second is the project SamBio: Collaboration for biodiversity - knowledge, feeling, effort. It is financed by the Västra Götaland region and aims to spread knowledge about companies' dependence on and impact on biodiversity. The project runs from 2023–2025 and is run by the Gothenburg Center for Global Biodiversity Studies (GGBC), where Marie Stenseke is Chair of the Steering group.

- The loss of biodiversity is one of the great challenges for humanity, and it feels good that we in Human Geography, together with others at the School of Business, Economics and Law can increase our research efforts in the area, says Marie Stenseke.

More information about BIOTRaCes

BIOTraCes is coordinated from Wageningen the Netherlands. It will run for 4 years, 2023-2026 2026. The total budget is SEK 51 million, of which roughly SEK 7 million goes to the University of Gothenburg. The Swedish part of the project is led by Marie Stenseke and, in also employs Oscar Jakobsson, who will soon start as a post-doctor in Human Geography at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg. In addition, another senior researcher will be employed in the coming autumn.

Find more information om BIOTraCes website:

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Marie Stenseke, Professor, School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg

Phone: +46 31 786 1389