Profile: nen

Markku Loytonen, Vice Rector and Professor of Human Geography, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland. Markku’s research interests range from the history of geography and exploration to quantitative methods and GIS, with a focus on the geography of health.

Markku L yt nen earned his MSc in 1979, and his PhD in 1986 at the University of Helsinki. He was at the University of Turku in Finland prior to his appointment at Helsinki in 1999. Markku wrote his PhD thesis on the spatial development of communications systems in Finland from 1860 to 1980. He applied theories of innovation, diffusion, and economic growth. He finished this thesis in 1985, just as the AIDS pandemic was achieving notoriety on the world stage. He noted that the theory and methods used in his thesis applied readily to this pandemic. Some of his early research and publications were on this subject. Since then he has investigated multiple drug resistant tuberculosis. He is currently researching ALS/MND (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a.k.a. Motor Neuron Disease) with Clive Sabel, Paul Boule, Robin Flowerdew, Paula Maasilta, and others. Markku’s list of publications is nearly 300 titles, mostly articles, reviews and research reports. He is well-known in Finland as an author of popular science books, among them four literature award-winning books for children. He is on the editorial boards of Health and Place, International Journal of Health Geographics, and Belgeo. He has served as the Editor-in-Chief of Fennia (an international journal of geography published by the Geographical Society of Finland) and as the Editor-in-Chief of Terra (a journal for Finnish geographers). He is currently Vice President of the IGU, a full member of the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters, and a board member of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies, with positions of trust in many other scientific organisations. He is a member of the Order of the White Rose of Finland.

Markku may be contacted at

Updated: January 2009