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Helena Nordström Källström


I work as researcher at the department of Urban and rural development, the division for environmental communication.


I am responsible teacher for the course Project management and communication which is compulsory for all agronomy students at SLU and is usually given in the fourth year of study. I am also course leader of the course Interdisciplinary practice in the Masters programme Sustainable development which is a joint effort between Uppsala university and SLU. I supervise master’s projects in the program Environmental communication and management but also students in other programs at SLU.


I work with issues concerning social sustainability in rural Sweden, such as identity, practice, motivation and decision making. I’m interested in sustainable food production and sustainable ways of life in the countryside.  For example, I want to know what motivates farmers to change to more sustainable methods and strategies of production and what social factors that inspires illegal hunting. I usually use qualitative methods, but I also have experience in working with quantitative surveys.

Ongoing projects:

Social indicators for sustainable development of Swedish agriculture

SpotIT - IT-solutions for user friendly IPM-tools in management of leaf spot diseases in cereals

Plant protection for sustainable food production

Finished projects:

Changing Animal Bodies: Breeding Responses to Environmental, Economic and Social Pressures (2014-2018)


I have an interest in cooperation with actors in the surroundings of my research area. In 2016 I was participating in a mobility project (AkUt) which meant that I spent one day a week at The Rural Economy and Agricultural Societies (Hushållningssällskapens förbund).

Since 2017 i have led a committee working with instructions for a portfolio to present collaboration skills used in recruitment for academic positions at the university.

In the course Project management and communication, every year 23-25 student projects initiated by different organizations within the agricultural sector are carried through. 


Head of the division for Environmental communication, Department for urban and rural development, SLU. November 2006 to February 2011.

Agr.Dr. in Environmental Communication, SLU, November 2008
The title of the thesis is “Mellan trivsel och ensamhet – om sociala villkor i lantbruket” or ”Between comfort and solitude - the social conditions at Swedish farms”.  The thesis built on interviews with farmers in remote Swedish countryside on issues concerning their life world and relation to the wider society.

Master of Science in Agriculture at SLU (2001), Plant production and soil science (180 credits)


Co-supervisor 2013-2016: Erica von Essen "In the gap between legality and legitimacy"

Selected publications

Nordström Källström, H. (2008) Mellan trivsel och ensamhet: Om sociala villkor i lantbruket. Doktorsavhandling. Institutionen för stad och land, SLU. Acta Universitatis agriculturae Sueciae vol. 2008:74.

Peer reviewed articles in international journals

Röös, E., Fischer, K., Tidåker, P. & Nordström Källström, H. (2019): How well is farmers’ social situation captured by sustainability assessment tools? A Swedish case study, International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology, vol. 26 (3), p 268-281. DOI: 10.1080/13504509.2018.1560371

Berlin, A., Nordström Källström, H., Lindgren, A. & Olson, Å. (2018). Scientific evidence for sustainable plant disease protection strategies for the main arable crops in Sweden. A systematic map protocol, Environmental Evidence, 7(31),

Terres, J-M., Scacchiafichi L. N., Wania, A., Ambar, M., Anguiano, E., Buckwell, A., Coppola, A., Gocht, A., Nordström Källström, H., Pointereau, P., Strijker, D., Visek, L., Vranken, L. & Zobena, A. (2015). Farmland abandonment in Europe: identification of drivers and indicators, development of a risk composite indicator. Land Use Policy, vol 49 (SI), p. 30-42. DOI: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2015.06.009

Von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Nordström Källström, H., Peterson, N. & Peterson, T.R. (2014). Deconstructing the poaching phenomenon: A review of typologies for understand illegal hunting. British Journal of Criminology, vol 54 (4), p. 632-651. DOI: 10.1093/bjc/azu022

Von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Nordström Källström, H., Peterson, N. & Peterson, T.R. (2014). The radicalisation of rural resistance: How hunting counterpublics in the Nordic countries contribute to illegal hunting. Journal of Rural Studies, No 39, p. 199-209. DOI: 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2014.11.001

Nordström Källström, H. & Ljung, M. (2005). Social Sustainability and Collaborative Learning. Ambio. Vol 34. No. 4-5. Kungliga vetenskapsakademien. Stockholm. DOI: 10.1639/0044-7447(2005)034[0376:SSACL]2.0.CO;2

Peer reviewed book chapters
Von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Nordström Källström, H., Peterson, N. & Peterson, T.R. (2016). Illegal hunting: Between social and criminal justice. In Donnemeyer, J. (ed) International handbook of rural criminology, Routledge.

Proceedings and conference presentations

Nordström Källström, H., Berlin, A. & Olson, Å. (2018). Kunskapsbaserat växtskydd i praktiken – vilka faktorer spelar roll för lantbrukares beslutsfattande om växtskyddsåtgärder? Nationell Växtskyddskonferens 2018, Uppsala 14-15 november.

Nordström Källström, H., Fischer, K., Röös, E. & Tidåker, P. (2018) Swedish livestock farmers self-reported social situation. Challenged ruralities: Nordic welfare states under pressure. 5th Nordic Conference for Rural Research, Vingsted, Denmark, May 14-16 2018.

Von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Nordström Källström, H., Peterson, N. & Peterson, T.R. (2015). Moral, cultural and legal discrepancies in hunting: bridging the fault line between fair chase and “killing for the table”. Conference on Environmental communication, Boulder, Colorado, 2015.

Bergeå, H., Caselunghe, E. & Nordström Källström, H. (2011). Farmers as legitimate participants within environmental decision making? Downplaying and discursive closure as communicative strategies for meeting farmer initiatives. NESS (Nordic Environmental Social Science Conference). Stockholm. June 2011.

Sandin, P., Blokhuis, H., Ekelund Axelson, L., Hansen-Axelsson, H., Nordström Källström, H., Rydhmer, L., Röös, E., Sundh, I., Ulen, B. (2011). Attitudes to Food Production Systems and Food Products. Proceedings of 24th NJF Congress and 2nd NFS Conference 2011. Uppsala.

Hallgren, L., Bergeå, H., Ahnström, J. & Nordström Källström, H. (2010). From conservation heroes to climate villains – how changes in social recognition may contribute to changed identities of farmers. IFSA proceedings. Vienna 2010.

Nordström Källström, H. & Caselunghe, E. (2010). Can social sustainability be measured? Paper presented at Nordic rural futures: pressures and possibilities research conference on the future of Nordic rural areas. May 4. Uppsala, Sweden

Caselunghe, E., Nordström Källström, H. & Ahnström, J. (2009). Landscape and place concepts meeting through encounters between birdwatchers and farmers. 2009 Conference on Communication and Environment, Portland, Maine, USA.

Lundin, G., Nordström Källström, H. & Fogelberg, F. (2007). Mechanical and electrical control of Cirsium arvense in growing cereal crops in organic farming. European Weed Research Society, 14th EWRS Symposium, Hamar, Norway, 17-21 June 2007

Nordström Källström, H. (2004). Social Exclusion of the Swedish Farmer: The Importance of Consumer-Producer Relations. XI World Congress of Rural Sociology, Trondheim, Norway.

Nordström Källström, H. (2004). Recognizing the farmer: Local food systems can provide improved social conditions for farmers. Sixth IFSA European Symposium, Vila Real, Portugal.

Nordström Källström, H. (2002). How changes in farmers' views of quality of life bring about structural changes: the case of farming in three marginal areas of Sweden. Farming and rural systems research and extension, local identities and globalisation, 5th IFSA European symposium. Florens, Italien.  

Ljung, M. and Nordström, H. (2001). Biodiversity and the public: Analysing eight Swedish projects communicating about biodiversity. 2001 Conference on Communication and Environment, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.

Reports in English

Von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Nordström Källström, H., Peterson, M.N. & Peterson, T.R. (2017) On Illegal Killings of Wildlife in Fennoscandia: Symposium Report. Urban and Rural reports 2017:1

Von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Nordström Källström, H., Peterson, N. & Peterson, T.R. (2015). Toward a critical and interdisciplinary understanding of illegal hunting: a synthesis of Copenhagen research workshop findings. Urban and rural reports. 2015:1.

Reports in Swedish

Nordström Källström, H., Tunón, H. & Wissman, J. (2018). Meritportfölj för samverkan vid SLU. Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Samverkansrådet, Uppsala 2018-08-31. Dnr SLU ua.2018.1.1.1-3353.

Nordström Källström, H., von Essen, E., Hansen, H.P., Peterson M.N. & Peterson, T.R. (2017). Om illegal jakt i Fennoskandia: Rapport från symposium. Urban and Rural reports 2017:2

Ljung, M. & Nordström Källström, H. (2014). Miljöåtgärder i samverkan – strategier för att inspirera till miljöåtgärder i lantbruket. Rapport 2013:31. Jordbruksverket, Jönköping.

Hallgren, L. & Nordström Källström, H. (2013). Att minska konflikter om rovdjursförvaltning? -Redovisning av en utvärdering av Naturvårdsverkets anslagsfördelning till rovdjursinformation 2009 – 2011. Naturvårdsverket, Stockholm.

Hansen, H.P., Peterson, T.R., Sinclair, J., Nordström Källström, H. & Haglind, P. (2010). Utredning av underlag för utveckling av socioekonomiska kriterier och rekommendationer rörande utsläpp av varg. Naturvårdsverket, Stockholm.

Nordström Källström, H. (2007). Den sociala situationen i lantbruket (kapitel 2.9) i: Hållbarhet i svenskt jordbruk 2007. SCB, Jordbruksverket, Naturvårdsverket och LRF. Örebro.

Caselunghe, E. & Nordström Källström, H. (2007). Lantbrukarnas framtidsbilder. Delstudie 4 i Det storstadsnära landskapet R:34. Länsstyrelsen i Stockholms län, Stockholm.

Nordström Källström, H. & Ljung, M. (2002). Att kommunicera biologisk mångfald. En förstudie. SLU, Institutionen för landskapsplanering Ultuna, Småskriftserien nr 6. Uppsala.

Nordström Källström, H. (2002). Att vara lantbrukare eller inte: En studie av förutsättningarna för livskraftigt lantbruk i tre nedläggningsdrabbade områden i Sverige. Jordbruksverket rapport 2002:10. Jönköping.  

Popular Science articles/presentations (in Swedish)
Bergeå, H., Caselunghe, E., Nordström Källström, H. & Ljung, M. (2011) Rådgivning om naturvård som affärsidé. Uppsala: SLU. Fakta. Jordbruk Nr 3, 2011. SLU, Uppsala. 

Nordström Källström, H. (2003). Inget uthålligt lantbruk utan bönder som trivs. Fakta Jordbruk, nr 15, 2003. SLU, Uppsala.