BiographyElen-Maarja is a cultural geographer / spatial planner by education. Her earlier research focused on cultural geography and in particular place attachment, well-being, belonging and identity-work of young people in the rural context. She has conducted extensive participatory research with young people in rural Estonia as well as rural Canada across several years. She has an interest in visual methods, in particular participatory video and takes a participatory approach to research in general. Her more recent research is focused on issues connected to spatial planning and environment - in particular community resilience in declining rural areas and community resilience to flooding. Her interest lies in the role of collaboration/shared power in spatial planning and the role of community groups (either protest groups or activist groups) in pushing further the transition towards more sustainable and inclusive places. In that context she has recently been exploring theme's such as urban gardening / community food movements, and protests in relation to environmental disasters.
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
Resilience - in the context of social & spatial sciences
Community groups, collective action, protests & activism
Climate adaptation & justice
Place-attachment, belonging & well-being
Hiking, training my dog, picking berries & mushrooms, gardening, ninjaprincesses