Welcome to the Aleksanteri Institute!

The Aleksanteri Institute functions as a national centre of research, study and expertise pertaining to Russia and Eastern Europe, particularly in the social sciences and humanities. The Institute promotes cooperation and interaction between the academic world, public administration, business life and civil society, both in Finland and abroad.

Call open for postdoctoral and senior researchers at the CoE

The Finnish Centre of Excellence in Russian Studies is looking for creative, motivated and enthusiastic postdoctoral and senior researchers conducting research on modernisation in Russia for a fixed term of 1–3 years, starting from 1 January, 2015.

The call is open until 22.10.2014.

For detailed information, please see Open Positions

Special call: Central Asia Fellowships

The Aleksanteri Institute invites highly qualified scholars conducting research on topics related to Central Asia in a field relevant to the Aleksanteri Institute’s research agenda to apply for a 1-3 months research stay at the Institute.

The call is open until 28.10.2014 and the research visits should take place between 1.2. and 17.7. 2015.

For detailed information, please visit the programme site.

Programme of the Aleksanteri Conference published

The 14th Annual Aleksanteri Conference "Restructuring State and Society in Russia" will take place in Helsinki on 22-24 October 2014. The conference programme including over 60 panels and plenary sessions has now been published at the conference site.

Keynote speakers of the conference are Alexander Etkind, Stephen E. Hanson, Oleg Kharkhordin, Alena Ledeneva and Maria Lipman. The conference will be opened on Wednesday October 22nd at noon by Minister for Foreign Affairs Erkki Tuomioja.

All events are free and open to public. Online registration required in advance.

Aleksanteri News 3/2014


Aleksanteri News 3/2014 is happy to introduce on page 2 Visiting Fellow Dr. Regina Smyth, who has lately devoted a lot of time to the enigma of Putin's appeal. The five other interesting visitors of early autumn are presented on pages 6 & 7.

This issue also has the pleasure to congratulate the first MA graduates of ECEBB Studies Satu Kuusranta and Markus Kujawa and publish an interview with a Master's School alumnus Santeri Eriksson.

Also included are the latest and upcoming seminars, conferences and publications, so to get a quick overall picture of our autumn, please take a look!

Theme week in the University of Helsinki Think Corner

Aleksanteri Institute hosts a Europe theme week in Think Corner in cooperation with the faculty of social sciences and faculty of law. You'll find more information in Finnish on the Think Corner webpage and in the University of Helsinki event site. All events are in Finnish.

Aleksanteri Insight: Where is the Eastern group heading? 

Political trends in the Eastern Group might create a Trojan horse effect inside the EU, writes Katalin Miklóssy. Miklóssy's article "Why is the Russian model tempting for the Eastern group of the EU?" was published in Aleksanteri Insight 4/2014

Competition in Socialist Society

The concept of "competition” is usually associated with market economies, while the socialist system, based on command economic planning and state-centered control over society, was supposed to emphasise "co-operation". However, various forms of competition found their way into a wide range of industries and social fields across the Soviet bloc.

How and why did the mechanisms of competition develop at state, enterprise and grassroot level? What impact did competition have in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe?

A new book edited by Katalin Miklóssy and Melanie Ilic shows how the gradual adoption and adaptation of Western practices led to the emergence of more open competitiveness in socialist society. Competition in Socialist Society was published in 2014 by Routledge.

Kikimora News: Finnish eastern trade discussed in English

Finland was the only developed market economy to trade with the Soviet Union on a bilateral basis until the collapse of central planning. In contrast with Eastern European countries, Finnish authorities - and public opinion as well - have traditionally argued that this trade was particularly profitable for the Finnish trade. This is claimed to be true both at the company level and for the Finnish economy as a whole.

An English-language discussion on these issues has been lacking so far. The new title Trading with the Soviet Union
The Finnish Experience 1944–1991
by Pekka Sutela aims to bridge this gap.

The book was published in Kikimora Publications Series B (Kikimora Studies in Russia and Eastern Europe) in June 2014.

Markku Kivinen received the City of Helsinki Science Award

The City of Helsinki Science Award was handed to professor Markku Kivinen on Tuesday June 10th by the Deputy Mayor Ritva Viljanen.

The award is a recognition of professor Kivinen's position as one of the leading theoreticians on Russian society and his diverse expertise on all questions related to Russia. Kivinen has also actively influenced the science policies making Finland one of the leading countries in Russian studies.

The City of Helsinki Science Award has been granted since 1996 for significant scientific work accomplished in Helsinki or by a citizen of Helsinki.


Centre of Excellence Choices of Russian Modernisation


Recent Publications

See database TUHAT for all publications by our staff members


Helsinki Insight