Estonian University of Life Sciences
The Estonian University of Life Sciences (Estonian
Estonian language
Estonian is the official language of Estonia, spoken by about 1.1 million people in Estonia and tens of thousands in various émigré communities...

: Eesti Maaülikool, EMÜ), located in Tartu
Tartu is the second largest city of Estonia. In contrast to Estonia's political and financial capital Tallinn, Tartu is often considered the intellectual and cultural hub, especially since it is home to Estonia's oldest and most renowned university. Situated 186 km southeast of Tallinn, the...

, Estonia
Estonia , officially the Republic of Estonia , is a state in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Finland, to the west by the Baltic Sea, to the south by Latvia , and to the east by Lake Peipsi and the Russian Federation . Across the Baltic Sea lies...

, is the former Estonian Agricultural University, which was established in 1951 and renamed and restructured in November 2005.

Eesti Maaülikool is, by its own claim, the only university
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 in Estonia whose priorities in academic and research activities provide the sustainable development
Sustainable development
Sustainable development is a pattern of resource use, that aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for generations to come...

 of natural resources necessary for the existence of Man as well as the preservation of heritage and habitat
Habitat (ecology)
A habitat is an ecological or environmental area that is inhabited by a particular species of animal, plant or other type of organism...

. The EMÜ is a centre of research and development in such fields as agriculture
Agriculture is the cultivation of animals, plants, fungi and other life forms for food, fiber, and other products used to sustain life. Agriculture was the key implement in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that nurtured the...

, forestry
Forestry is the interdisciplinary profession embracing the science, art, and craft of creating, managing, using, and conserving forests and associated resources in a sustainable manner to meet desired goals, needs, and values for human benefit. Forestry is practiced in plantations and natural stands...

, animal science
Animal science
Animal Science is described as "studying the biology of animals that are under the control of mankind". Historically, the animals studied were farm animals, including livestock and horses, but courses available now look at a far broader area to include companion animals, for example dogs, cats and...

, veterinary science
Veterinary medicine
Veterinary Medicine is the branch of science that deals with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease, disorder and injury in non-human animals...

, rural life and economy, food science
Food science
Food science is a study concerned with all technical aspects of foods, beginning with harvesting or slaughtering, and ending with its cooking and consumption, an ideology commonly referred to as "from field to fork"...

 and environmentally
Environmental science
Environmental science is an interdisciplinary academic field that integrates physical and biological sciences, to the study of the environment, and the solution of environmental problems...

 friendly technologies. The university is a member of the BOVA university network.

Teaching and research is carried out in five institutes:
  • Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences
  • Institute of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Sciences
  • Institute of Forestry and Rural Engineering
  • Institute of Technology
  • Institute of Economics and Social Sciences.

In 2009, there were 4704 students at EMÜ. There were 983 employees, among them 228 lecturers and 159 researchers and senior researchers.


The roots of EMÜ are in the agricultural and forestry education and research carried out at the University of Tartu
University of Tartu
The University of Tartu is a classical university in the city of Tartu, Estonia. University of Tartu is the national university of Estonia; it is the biggest and highest-ranked university in Estonia...

. At the opening celebration of the University in 1632, Johan Skytte
Johan Skytte
Johan Skytte was a Swedish politician.Skytte was son of the Mayor of Nyköping, Bengt Nilsson Skräddare...

, the Swedish chancellor and practical founder of the University, said that wished that "even the peasants of this country could get their share of the watering springs of educational wealth." This statement is taken to be the beginning of agricultural education
Agricultural education
Agricultural education is instruction about crop production, livestock management, soil and water conservation, and various other aspects of agriculture. Agricultural education includes instruction in food education, such as nutrition...

 in Estonia.

After the reopening of Tartu University in 1802, a Chair of Agriculture was founded under Prof. J.W. Krause. Initially agronomy
Agronomy is the science and technology of producing and using plants for food, fuel, feed, fiber, and reclamation. Agronomy encompasses work in the areas of plant genetics, plant physiology, meteorology, and soil science. Agronomy is the application of a combination of sciences like biology,...

 was taught in the Faculty of Philosophy
Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational...

, later in the Faculty of Physics
Physics is a natural science that involves the study of matter and its motion through spacetime, along with related concepts such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves.Physics is one of the oldest academic...

 and Mathematics
Mathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...

. This school was well known in Europe and Russia. When Tartu opened as an Estonian university in 1919, a Faculty of Agriculture, consisting of the Departments of Agronomy and Forestry, was founded. Experimental stations and trial plots, where students could undertake research work, also belonged to the faculty. A Faculty of Veterinary Science was founded based on the older Tartu Veterinary Institute. These two faculties formed the core of an independent university in 1951, the Estonian Agricultural Academy.

The Estonian Agricultural Academy was directly subordinate to the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 Ministry of Agriculture and prepared specialists in different fields of agriculture from agronomists and animal breeders to experts in the electrification of large farms. Work continued in this way until the end of the 1980s.

After the regaining of Estonian independence in 1991, the Academy was renamed Estonian Agricultural University, and the institution restructured, also according to the radical changes in Estonian agriculture and forestry (such as the abolishment of kolkhoz
A kolkhoz , plural kolkhozy, was a form of collective farming in the Soviet Union that existed along with state farms . The word is a contraction of коллекти́вное хозя́йство, or "collective farm", while sovkhoz is a contraction of советское хозяйство...

es and sovkhoz
A sovkhoz , typically translated as state farm, is a state-owned farm. The term originated in the Soviet Union, hence the name. The term is still in use in some post-Soviet states, e.g., Russia and Belarus. It is usually contrasted with kolkhoz, which is a collective-owned farm...

es). New specialities like Environmental Protection, Landscape Architecture
Landscape architecture
Landscape architecture is the design of outdoor and public spaces to achieve environmental, socio-behavioral, or aesthetic outcomes. It involves the systematic investigation of existing social, ecological, and geological conditions and processes in the landscape, and the design of interventions...

, Production and Marketing of Agricultural Products, Landscape Protection and Preservation, Applied Hydrobiology
Hydrobiology is the science of life and life processes in water. Much of modern hydrobiology can be viewed as a sub-discipline of ecology but the sphere of hydrobiology includes taxonomy, economic biology, industrial biology, morphology, physiology etc. The one distinguishing aspect is that all...

, Environmental Economics
Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The term economics comes from the Ancient Greek from + , hence "rules of the house"...

 and Natural Resources Management were adopted.

Up to the end of 2004, the University had six faculties (Agronomy, Agricultural Engineering, Economics & Social Sciences, Forestry, Rural Engineering, and Veterinary Sciences) and eight institutes (Estonian Agribiocentre, Estonian Plant Biotechnology Research Institute EVIKA, Forest Research Institute, Institute of Animal Science, Institute of Environmental Protection, Institute of Experimental Biology, Institute of Zoology and Botany and Polli Institute of Horticulture).

However, the EAU was always in a limbo, not least under the influence of Europeanization after Estonia joining the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

in 2005. Thus, in the same year the change to Estonian University of Life Sciences and refocusing was carried out, aimed at guaranteeing the institution's survival in the coming times.

External links

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