Who we are

The main tasks and operational objectives of Research Centre Terra include:

  • Producing research-based information that enables the safe construction and use of infrastructures as well as their cost-effective and sustainable maintenance; we develop new material technology and structural solutions, modernise design and renovation methods, and promote the introduction of new practices in the infrastructure sector.
  • Training new graduate engineers and doctors with up-to-date knowledge and skills for various jobs in the infrastructure sector.
  • Participating in the development of the infrastructure sector in close collaboration with other actors in the field.


Research activities

Terra studies infrastructures in four functionally overlapping research groups, TerraGeo, TerraRoad, TerraRail and TerraDigi. Terra’s research activities are characterized by:

  • Computational and numerical analysis of the behaviour of structural systems
  • Verification of analysis results by monitoring full-scale structures
  • Derivation of input data for the analyses relying on the diverse laboratory and field measurement capabilities available to the research team
  • Versatile utilisation of digitalisation throughout the life-cycle of infrastructures
  • Implementation of research projects in close collaboration with the users of the research results – companies, infrastructure owners and public authorities
  • Reporting of key research results in both Finnish and English



Terra’s personnel have extensive teaching responsibilities at the Faculty of Built Environment at the Tampere University:

  • Each year, we implement approximately 20 courses in Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programmes in Civil Engineering. In addition, we participate to some extent in the implementation of several other study courses at the Tampere University.
  • We supervise 15–20 Bachelor’s theses and the same number of Master’s theses each year; in addition, about 15 Doctoral theses are currently being conducted under the supervision of our research groups.
  • We support lifelong learning by organising various continuing education courses on changing topics, such as railway design, design of foundation engineering structures, circular economy in infrastructure construction and dam safety.
  • We actively develop the contents of our cources in collaboration with different stakeholders.
  • We constantly strive to develop the teaching methods we use.

Extensive educational responsibilities and keeping educational content up-to-date requires that everyone in Terra participates in the teaching and research activities. In addition, our permanent staff is complemented by an invaluable docent network as well as a number of other visiting lecturers and part-time teachers.


Societal interaction

In addition to research and training that serve the practical needs of various stakeholders in the infrastructure sector, our third main task includes a wide range of interactions with the surrounding society. In connection with this task:

  • We are constantly involved in the preparation of several national and EU-level standards and guidelines
  • We actively participate in the activities of numerous professional associations and committees in the field of infrastructure construction
  • We offer our expertise to decision-makers in various decision-making situations that require technical expertise
  • We participate in the public debate on the development of the infrastructure sector in various forums