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Mari Kågström

Mari Kågström
Associate senior lecturer


Mari Kågström researches governance and implementation for a sustainable and just society, with emphasis on policies, practices, change agency and collaboration within land use planning and natural resource management. She has a particular empirical interest in the design and performance of strategic environmental assessment (SEA) and environmental impact assessment (EIA). 

She is the co-initiator of Agora - an arena for developing knowledge and learning for environmental assessment. Since 2017 she also acts as Program director for MKB-dagen, the annual national environmental assessment conference, in collaboration with national authorities. 

Mari received her doctorate from the SLU in 2016. Her PhD thesis focused on how practitioners’ perceived and actual space for action influence on the inclusion of new perspectives in EA, namely social and environmental health and wellbeing, and in particular on the importance of the role of consultants for improving EA quality

Mari has over 15 years of experience as EA consultant. Most recently she worked part-time as senior specialist at the consulting firm Tyréns AB where she was engaged for process and methodology advices on EA projects, coordinator for the internal EA quality development program and mentor for young EA professionals.


Course leader: 

MX0147 Environmental impact assessment (SLU and Uppsala University) 

MX0136 Environmental impact assessment and environmental communication - an introduction (SLU)

MX0137  Environmental impact assessment, environmental communication and nature interpretation - methods (SLU)

HU0001 Sustainability Perspectives (SLU)

Teaching on following courses: 

LK0330 Roles and methods for landscape architecture in comprehensive planning (SLU)

Enivronmental Impact Assessment - Theory and Practice (Mid Sweden University) 


2024-228 RULES AND TOOLS – safeguarding neighbouring green space for human health and well-being

2022 - ongoing Agora - an arena for developing knowledge and learning in environmental assessment. A strategic initiativ togheter with the Mid Sweden University.

2022-2023 Multifunctional landscape transformations – turning around the trade-offs. Part of the Interdisciplinary Academy (IDA), which is a newly established programme at SLU to promote and explore cross-disciplinary research at SLU. 

2022-2023 Environmental effects from power lines. Funded by Energimyndigheten.

2021 How to study and communicate the landscape and well-being nexus? Funded by SLU Landscape. 

2019-2020 Klimatsmart samhällsbyggnad med sociala mervärden. Researcher and process leader in collaboration with the County Administrative Board of Västmanland. Funded by Energimyndigheten.

2018-2019 An opportunity not to be missed: promoting health by going beyond the simplistic view of landscape and health interactions. Funded by SLU Future Platform for Animals, Nature and Health.

2018-2019 Baltic-EaP Network on Quality Control and Capacity Development in Environmental Assessment. The aim is to develop an expert network on quality control and capacity development in environmental assessment. The centerpiece of the project are network meetings and national ‘SWOT’ analyses of quality control and capacity development in the participating countries. Project led by senior lecture Mat Cashmore (SLU). Funded by the Swedish Institute.

2016-2018 Decode – community design for conflicting desires. A Vinnova-supported project aiming for supporting sustainable planning by developing knowledge and methods for: organization, collaboration and public involvement. The project is led by adj. prof. Björn Hellström (KTH) in collaboration with 18 partner organisations from academia, private and public sector. Mari leads the study ‘From Vision to Action’, which focuses on inter-professional collaboration across administrative boarders within municipalities as well as with the private sector. This includes analysis as well as supporting public participants' capacity for developing situational specific strategies for facilitating inter-professional collaboration. Mari is also engaged in the study “Women in Vårberg” focusing on women’s participation in, and influence on, local planning. Mari also leads the cross-disciplinary theme 'Collaboration between academy and practice'.


Mari has long experience of collaboration and other interactions with EA and planning professionals, including municipalities and national and regional planning, environment and health as well as consultants and developers within the private sector.

For Mari, collaboration is central, both as research focus and as a methodological approach. Mari's collaboration activities include joint projects, workshops, conferences and seminars, resulting in reseach publications as well as the opportunity to instigate and frame debates on EA, develop new services within EA consultancy, new frameworks for assessing impact, public authorities’ guidelines and teaching material. 

Selected publications

Fors, H., Berlin, A., Gottlieb, U., Kågström, M., Weldon, J., & Zhang, J. (2024). Interdisciplinary insights into navigating the maze of landscape multifunctionality. People and Nature, 6, 519–534.

Kågström, M.,  Berlin, A., Fors, H., Gottlieb, U., Weldon, J., Zhang, J. (2023) Så underlättas tvärvetenskapligt arbete. Universitetsläraren. Debate paper.     

Kågström, M., L. Kørnøv and I. Lyhne (2023). Collaboration between researchers and practitioners in environmental assessment: Introduction to the special issue. Environmental Impact Assessment Review: 107061.

Kågström, M., Faith-Ell, C., Longueville, A. (2023). Exploring researcher’ roles in collaborative spaces supporting learning in environmental assessment in Sweden. Environmental Impact Assessment Review. Volume 99, March 2023.

Longueville, A., Faith-Ell, C., Kågström, M. (2022) The potential for Networked Learning in Environmental Assessment teaching in Sweden. Conference paper. Thirteenth international conference on networked learning (NLC2022), 16-18 May 2022, Sundsvall, Sweden. 

Kågström, M. (2022) How to prepare students for a work life within pluralistic processes and sociopolitical contexts? Conference abstract. TUK2022, The Faculty Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy in Science and Technology, Uppsala University, March 16, 2022, Uppsala, Sweden. 

Kågström, M. (2020) Klimatsmart samhällsplanering med sociala mervärden – en berättelse om samspel och hopp. [Climate-smart spatial planning with added social values – a story about interactions and hope]. Forskningsrapport tillhörande Energimyndighetens program Lokal och regional kapacitetsutveckling [Research report belonging to the Swedish Energy Agency’s programme for local and regional development of capacity for energy transition and climate mitigation]

Kågström, M., Butler A., Dovlén S (2020) Välbefinnande och landskap - bortom natur. Rapport 7 i rapportserien från SLU Framtidens djur, natur och hälsa.

Kågström, M. (2020) EXPECTATIONS. Hope and despair: professionals’ struggle to navigate multiple planning ideas in public-private collaboration, in eds. Metzger, J. and Lindblad, J. Dilemmas of Sustainable Urban Development: A View from Practice. Routledge.

Kågström, M. (2019) Bortom invanda förväntningar, in eds. Brechensbauer, A., Grafström, M., Jonsson, A. and Klintman, M. Kampen om kunskap: Akademi och praktik. Santérus Förlag.

Kågström, M., Dovlén, S. (2019) Barriers and Openings for Transforming Swedish Planning Practice – Examples of Landscape and Health Policy Integration. Planning Theory and Practice.

Kågström, M. (2019) A social scientist's reflection on EIA implementation of methods for threatened species. Animal Conservation, 22(4), 326-327.

Kågström, M., Brorström, S. (2019) Strävan efter att göra bättre, men inte veta hur - en studie om hållbarhetssamordnares vardag och praktik, in eds. Hellström., B. and Daram, L. Stadsutveckling & design för motstridiga önskemål. En bok om nödvändigheten av förändring i tanke och handling för sociala hållbarhetsprocesser. Arkus skrift nr 77, Arkus förlag. 

Isaksson, S., Kågström, M. (2019) Vadå påverka? Om berättelser från Vårberg. in eds. Hellström., B. and Daram, L. Stadsutveckling & design för motstridiga önskemål. En bok om nödvändigheten av förändring i tanke och handling för sociala hållbarhetsprocesser. Arkus skrift nr 77, Arkus förlag.

Kågström, M. (2019). Så mycket upplevelse med så enkla medel! Dokumentation och reflektion från två seminarier om naturvägledning, naturupplevelser och hälsa. Rapport 2 i rapportserien från Framtidens djur, natur och hälsa.

Bergeå, H., Kågström, M., Löf, A., Westin M (2018). Kännedom om dilemman kan leda till bättre samverkan. Universitetsläraren

Kågström, M. (2016). Begränsande normer och utrymme för förändring. PLAN: Tidskrift för samhällsplanering 3, 50-53.

Kågström, M. (2016) Between ‘best’ and ‘good enough’: how consultants guide quality in environmental assessment. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 60, 169–175

Kågström, M. (2016) Strengthening the practitioner focus in environmental assessment. Doctoral thesis no 2016:1. Faculty of landscape architecture, horticulture and crop production. Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.  

Kågström, M. & T. Richardson (2015). Space for action: how practitioners influence environmental assessment. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 54, 110-118.

Kågström, M., T. Hilding-Rydevik & I. Sjöberg (2013). Human health frames in EIA: the case of Swedish road planning. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal 31(3), 198-207.

Kågström, M. (2010). Hälsa i MKB ger utrymme för godtycke. PLAN. Tidskrift för samhällsplanering 2-3, 46-51.

Kågström, M. (2009). Hur ska man hantera det här med hälsa? En kunskapsöversikt om hälsans roll i konsekvensbeskrivning och transportplanering. Uppsala: Institutionen för stad och land. Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet.


Researcher, Associate Senior Lecturer at the Department of Urban and Rural Development; Division of Political Science and Natural Resource Governance
Telephone: +4618672516