Jonas Åkerman

Jonas Åkerman

Professor emeritus, Associate professor emeritus

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Personal profile


 Active at the Department of Physical Geography in Lund since 1967. My research focuses on arctic and alpine environments especially periglacial processes and permafrost. My main field research, is done in Svalbard, Norway, focusing upon the geomorphology and periglacial processes in relation to climate and its variations. The fieldwork was initiated in 1972 and is still ongoing and the monitoring of the periglacial processes and their climatic relations within this project is one of the longest uninterrupted series of its kind. A similar monitoring programme, which started in 1978, is going on in the Abisko area in northern Sweden.  

Parallel with my focus on arctic and alpine environments I have been active in applied Physical Geography in development projects within the agricultural and rural development sector. Through long term assignments in India, and Africa within projects concerning environmental management and development issues, agriculture, agroforestry, soil erosion and conservation and general rural development I have a wide and long international experience. These assignments as technical adviser within ministries of Agriculture (India, Lesotho, Zambia) and Environment (Kenya, Zambia) and project manager within UN, Sida/SAREC & SADC financed projects give me a wide background on practical applied development issues from the field and from the management side of sustainable development issues. My specific interests include the role of smallholder and subsistence farmers as main actors in a sustainable rural development process, environmentally sound and sustainable land use, environmental impact assessment, training and extension issues etc. My teaching includes almost all aspects of Physical Geography and at all levels; geomorphology esp. periglacial geomorphology, environmental change, soil science and climatology, hydrology, & photogrammetry.

I am the Swedish Council member of the International Permafrost Association, IPA, and Board member of the Svenska Sällskapet för Antropologi och Geografi. Board member of the Svenska Nationalkommitten för Geografi within the Royal Swedsih Acadamy of Sciences.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land

Free keywords

  • geomophorolgy, arctic, permafrost, climate


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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