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Vaasa, Finland

The University of Vaasa is a multidisciplinary, business-oriented university in Vaasa, Finland. The campus of the university is situated by the Gulf of Bothnia adjacent to downtown Vaasa. The university has evolved from a school of economics founded in 1968 to a university consisting of three faculties: Faculty of Business Studies, Faculty of Philosophy and Faculty of Technology. With its Faculty of Business Studies, also called the Vaasa School of Economics, University of Vaasa is one of the largest business universities in Finland. The university has 425 personnel which includes a teaching staff of 180 and 54 professors. Around 5000 students are currently studying in various degree programs at the university. Wikipedia.

To date, researchers have expressed increasing interest in the potential of using microalgae as a biofuel feedstock and technological solution for CO2 sequestration. Microalgae-derived biodiesel production is one of the best choices for biofuels production, since microalgae have substantial amounts of lipids which can be used for biodiesel conversion. Nonetheless, after the production of algal biodiesel, large quantities of residuals or post-extracts are left over, threatening environmental hygiene if not disposed of appropriately. In this respect, it is critical that the utilization of these remnants is taken into account in an effort to make microalgal biodiesel sustainable. This paper evaluates the theoretical biodiesel, ethanol, and methane yields and the relative calorific values in the production chain of algal biofuels. It is found that fermentation and anaerobic digestion of microalgae residuals are two steps which could assist in dealing with the problem of algal waste, as well as the economic and energetic balance of such a promising technology. It also discusses in detail the potential of the continuous conversion of algal residuals into ethanol and methane, with particular focus on the energetic interest, and nitrogen and phosphorus recycling. Key technical issues related to fermentation and anaerobic digestion are indentified, the strategies to improve their production highlighted, and the necessity of producing algal biodiesel and/or ethanol discussed. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Zhu L.,University of Vaasa | Zhu L.,Aalto University
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2015

In response to energy crisis, global warming and climate changes, microalgae have received a great deal of interest as a biofuel feedstock. However, the development of microalgal biofuels witnesses an obvious and serious dilemma. The reported literature shows that "fuel only" option is not economically viable due to the overwhelming investments in capital and operation. Hence, it is questionable whether it is too luxurious to produce microalgae only for biofuel application. In addition, there are some voiced concerns related to the impacts of microalgal biofuel production on the conventional applications, such as cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and nutritious feed. It is therefore questionable whether the microalgal biofuel production will affect the original functions. From a sustainability point of view, the author explores the current challenges in microalgal applications and proposes an innovative framework for microalgal biorefinery, which can realize the production of multiple products in the form of high values and biofuels such as biodiesel, bioethanol and biogas. With the aim at maximizing the value derived from different microalgal components, the innovative microalgal biorefinery concept includes four pathways: high-value products-biodiesel-bioethanol-biogas; high-value products-bioethanol-biogas; high-value products-biodiesel-biogas; and high-value products-biogas. Special attention has been paid to the production of high-value products through system integration and engineering, which is expected to promote the economics of microalgal biofuels. Net energy ratio assessment and cost-effectiveness assessment have been highlighted to testify the feasibility of microalgal biorefinery options, and some crucial actions have been suggested to help establish the process. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Heikkila J.-P.,University of Vaasa
Journal of Strategic Information Systems | Year: 2013

This paper extends the application of institutional theory to electronic human resource management (e-HRM), and strategic information systems (IS) more generally, in a multinational corporation (MNC) subsidiary setting. By adopting Scott's (2001) institutional theory perspective, this paper explores the effects of host-country institutional factors on strategic e-HRM practices in foreign subsidiaries. More specifically, the aims of this paper were, first, to shed light on how regulative, cognitive and normative institutional dimensions affect Western-based e-HRM practices in MNC subsidiaries in China, and second, to examine how these institutional factors influence the strategic potential of e-HRM in this setting. Based on interview data collected from key informants in 10 MNC subsidiaries from Beijing and Shanghai, the findings illustrate how institutional pressures create both positive transformational and negative dysfunctional consequences for subsidiaries, and that subsidiary responses to these pressures can substantially affect the ability of IS to achieve its strategic potential. Although observed local adaptations were seen to restrict the strategic potential of IS, in some cases responses seem to have enabled the transposition of a new set of strategic IS practices to this non-Western setting. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Peura P.,University of Vaasa
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2013

The main purpose of this article is to consider macro level theories for understanding the urge for reform as well as the process of societal change both in general terms, and more specifically within the energy sector. The aim is also to consider the energy sector in a wider context and analyse its recent development as a potential part of this reform. The scope and logical framework of this article is the following: The state of the global environment is approaching a point where the whole of humankind is in danger. The article reviews and discusses humankind's limits of existence and dialectics of the human-nature relationship by contrasting Malthusian and Boserupian theoretical views. This creates both practical and scientific needs. The long societal process of change is discussed according to the three-layer (3L) model of societal chance. The production of energy has traditionally been one of the core issues concerning the effect humankind has on the environment, and with regards to potential change related to it, reforming the energy sector is in a key position. This article reviews and discusses the way the already established renewal of the energy sector corresponds to the 3L model, and the diverse potentials of the anticipated further progress. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Biofuels development and adoption in Nigeria has progressed significantly since the inception of the country's biofuel program in 2007. The rapid growth of the biofuels subsector in Nigeria inspired this review which aims at identifying the key drivers, agents, enablers, incentives and objectives driving the development. From the upstream to the downstream sub-sectors, there is an increasing entry of players and participants (private and public investors). This paper aims to explore the underlining drivers, enablers and incentives promoting the investments and participations in biofuels development, adoption and utilization in Nigeria. The research sourced data from basically secondary sources and undertook desk review of available information. The drivers identified are classified into the endogenous and exogenous categories. From the review, the paper presents a multi-components conceptual framework that captures key elements of the biofuel development in Nigeria. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

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