University of Oulu

Matti Lakkala, Aale Luusua & Janne Pihlajaniemi (2020) Finnish perceptions of log and log architecture, Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research, 35:5-6, 296-307, DOI: 10.1080/02827581.2020.1774642

Finnish perceptions of log and log architecture

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Author: Lakkala, Matti1; Luusua, Aale2; Pihlajaniemi, Janne1
Organizations: 1Oulu School of Architecture, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2INTERACT Research Group, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.9 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Informa, 2020
Publish Date: 2022-01-27


The use of log construction is increasing in Finland. This development is desirable for ecological and economic reasons. However, due to changes related to the technical properties of logs and their overall popularity, introduction of novel building typologies and urbanization in general, it is unclear how the public currently experience logs as a construction material and technique. Thus, in this paper our aim is to examine logs and log building holistically as a phenomenon in the Finnish context, and to explore what kind of perceptions of the log as an architectural material there currently are among Finnish laypersons. To do so, we analyse interviews conducted among 18 Finnish laypersons. The study method utilized a semi-structured interview combined with a walk-along interview in a log construct built by our research team. Results are discussed through the lens of relevant wood research and the Finnish history of logs. Results suggest that logs are currently perceived as a topical and trendy material because of their naturalness, warmth and healthiness. Stereotypes related to logs, such as ruralness or traditionality, are changing or begin to appear differently. The visibility of log structures was found to be meaningful to the study participants in various ways.

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Series: Scandinavian journal of forest research
ISSN: 0282-7581
ISSN-E: 1651-1891
ISSN-L: 0282-7581
Volume: 35
Issue: 5-6
Pages: 296 - 307
DOI: 10.1080/02827581.2020.1774642
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 211 Architecture
Funding: This study was mainly conducted within the Modern Log City project, which was funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the log manufacturers of Northern Ostrobothnia. The final writing of the paper was done with financial support from the Finnish Cultural Foundation; we thankfully acknowledge all of their support.
Copyright information: © 2021 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research on 11 Jun 2020, available online: