Biodiversity, the economy and public policy

Grantham Scholar Kaisa Pietilå is now a Senior Research Scientist at Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), Helsinki, Finland. Her focus is on biodiversity policy and politics and she co-produces science and knowledge in order to better tackle biodiversity loss in Finland, at EU level and also internationally. At the Grantham Centre she researched what factors that influenced public policy decisions affecting biodiversity loss.

Kaisa Pietilå’s research at the Grantham Centre

The contemporary global economic crisis and environmental crisis are intimately related. Yet the existing political economy literature has little to say about the relationship between the economy and biodiversity. Currently, the planet is experiencing the sixth – but the first human induced – wave of mass extinction, which will have a detrimental effect on our economies and our way of life.

The loss of biodiversity needs to be examined through a wide lens, which is why a political economy perspective is necessary. This research will reflect on one core research question: What are the factors that influence public policy decisions affecting biodiversity loss? In doing so, this project aims to shed light on the political-economic processes of both causing biodiversity loss as well as tackling it.


In May 2018 Kaisa and other Scholars hosted an event for Chevening Scholars. Chevening: supporting the development of the world’s future decision makers.

In 2016 Kaisa Pietilä joined world leaders at COP22. Here, she reflects on what she saw of ‘corridor diplomacy’ and how biodiversity needs more attention. Read: COP22: corridor diplomacy and biodiversity by Kaisa Pietilä.

Social media

You can find Kaisa Pietilå on LinkedIn.


Professor Rosaleen Duffy

Professor of International Politics


Professor Colin Hay

Co-Director SPERI