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From Conventions to Convictions or to Cooperation? Cultural Heritage and Forestry in Finland

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Part of the One World Archaeology book series (WORLDARCH)

Abstract

Rapid economic development and mechanization of forestry since the 1970s have created conflicts between the interests of cultural heritage management and those of the forestry industry. Ecological and social sustainability are keywords of Finnish forestry and also are often mentioned in international conventions relating to cultural heritage. Nonetheless, hundreds of archaeological sites have been damaged during the last 40 years by mechanized harvesting and soil preparation. Several cases have been resolved in court. However, in Finland enforcing the law seems to be a less fruitful path to sustainability that cooperation between archaeologists and forestry professionals. This chapter will review the relevant international conventions concerning cultural heritage and present and analyze problems with the implementation of Finnish legislation concerning archaeological sites. The argument that a considerably better way to achieve sustainability and better protection—through enhanced cooperation between cultural heritage experts and forestry operators—is explored through a case study of the SKAIK project (Skogens Kulturarv i Kvarkenregionen, Forests Cultural Heritage in the Kvarken-region). This Swedish–Finnish project adopted the practice of wide-ranging cooperation with the forestry sector to protect archaeological sites through steps such as training forestry professionals and students to take cultural heritage sites into account in forestry planning and logging.

Keywords

Forestry Archaeological sites Finland International conventions Sustainability Cooperation SKAIK project 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Finnish National Board of AntiquitiesArchaeological Field ServicesHelsinkiFinland

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