News & Events Archive


In the News & Events Archive you'll find information about past conferences, lectures, seminars and other significant events at the Institute. From 2010 onwards, also research and publication news are included.

More information on the past activities can be found in the Annual Reports.

Past events by year | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004

News and Events in 2010

December 20th
Book launch: Gazing at Welfare, Gender and Agency. Maija Jäppinen, Meri Kulmala and Aino Saarinen (eds.) and Naistutkijana Venäjän kentillä, Meri Kulmala and Aino Saarinen.

Invitation, in Finnish (pdf)
More information from: Gazing at Welfare, Gender and Agency (pdf)
More information from: Naistutkijana Venäjän kentillä

December 17th

New book "Winter Kept Us Warm - Cold War Interactions Reconsidered", Sari Autio-Sarasmo and Brendan Humphreys (eds.) has been published. This volume is the first in the Aleksanteri Cold War Series. The new series is the outlet of the Aleksanteri Cold War Research Group.

This book-series is dedicated to providing an arena for new approaches to and fresh interpretations of the Cold War era.

Book launch: Winter Kept Us Warm – Cold War Interactions Reconsidered. Sari Autio-Sarasmo and Brendan Humphreys (eds.).
Aleksanteri Cold War Series 1:2010. Kikimora Publications, Helsinki 2010.
More information
Invitation (pdf)


December 13th
The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum discusses Russian Culture of Enlightenment with prof. Tatjana Artemyeva (Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia).

Decenber 8th
Romaninaiset ja -perheet liikkeellä Suomessa ja EU-Euroopassa (in Finnish)
Romaninaiset ja –perheet liikkeellä Suomessa ja EU-Euroopassa -sarjaan nojaava tutkijaseminaari jatkaa keskustelua romanien diasporasta ja pohjustaa tulevia jatkohankkeita.

December 2nd
Neukkulaan ja takaisin -seminar and the book launch. Guest Boris Kagarlitsky

November 8th
Cultural Forum: Länsimaisten rationaalisuuskäsitysten kritiikki (in Finnish)
Vesa Oittinen (professori, Aleksanteri-instituutti): Venäjä rationaalisuusteorioiden koetinkivenä? Krista Berglund (tutkija, Helsingin yliopisto): Rationalistisen lännen kritiikki nyky-Venäjällä

November 4th
Irina Ochirova
, Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany will give a talk entitled Russia’s foreign policy as a tool of Russia’s modernization at the Aleksanteri Institute Visiting Fellows Research Seminars series at 2 pm in the institute's 2nd floor meeting room, Unioninkatu 33, Helsinki. Abstract availabe at the seminar site!

November 1st-2nd
The Aleksanteri Institute's Cold War Research Group (CRWG) organises a two-day seminar entitled "New Cold War Research". More information available shortly!
Book release: Reassessing Cold War Europe Nov 1

October 27-29th
The 10th annual Aleksanteri Conference Fuelling the Future? Assessing Russia’s Role in Eurasia’s Energy Complex

October 21st
Cristina Rat, “Babes-Bolyai” University Cluj-Napoca will give a talk entitled Undeserving Daughters of Hero Mothers: Family policies and poverty in rural Romania at the Aleksanteri Institute Visiting Fellows Research Seminars series at 2 pm in the institute's 2nd floor meeting room, Unioninkatu 33, Helsinki. Abstract availabe at the seminar site!

October 20th

The latest issue of Aleksanteri News (4/2010) concentrates on 10th Annual Aleksanteri Conference. Issue Includes the Conference program.

The Face of the Month (p.2) is Director of Aleksanteri Institute, Ph.D. Markku Kivinen. In page 11 you can see two of our new visiting fellows at the Aleksanteri Institute: Irina Ochirova and Cristina Rat.
Download Aleksanteri News 4/2010 here (pdf) or pick up your printed copy at the institute!

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Russian media research continues

Emil Aaltonen Foundation has decided to finance a research project lead by Dr. Jukka Pietiläinen with the title “Russian Media Revolution” with a three year grant of total 200,000 euros during the years 2011-2013. The project continues and widens the research done in Russian Magazines project funded in 2009-2010 by Helsingin Sanomat Foundation.

Emil Aaltonen (1869-1949) was a shoe factory owner in Tampere and the foundation named after him currently distributes 3,5 million euros annually for Finnish researchers.

October 19th
Research seminar, Dr Larissa Titarenko professor and sociologist from Belarus State University (BSU) Minsk, will be talking about Belarussian national identity: construction and values.

October 19th
A seminar Ajankohtaista muuttotutkimuksessa arranged by the PRIMTS project. More information in Finnish (pdf).

October 11th-12th
Cross-Border Cooperation -Conference in Tbilisi
The Aleksanteri Institute was Co-organizer of the conference: Cross-Border Cooperation as an instrument for
Peace Building and Reconciliation
in Tbilisi.
More information availabe at the research project site

October 8th
An opening seminar for a new project called "OVET" was held at the University of Helsinki main building, Runeberg Hall (Fabianinkatu 33) at 9.30-12.30 am. More information in Finnish

October 7th
Visiting Fellow Research Seminar: Sergey Zhuravljov: "AvtoVAZ Car Building Factory in the Times of Transformation (late 1980s-recent time)" at 2.15 pm in the Aleksanteri Institute 2nd floor meeting room. Please see the seminar site for more information and how to register!

October 5th
Aleksanteri Visiting Fellow, Dr. Florian Toepfl gives a presentation on "Managing Public Outrage: Power, Scandal, and New Media in Contemporary Russia" on Tuesday, 5th of October at 13.00 at the Aleksanteri Institute, Unioninkatu 33, Meeting room 2nd floor. Abstract and more information available here.

October 5th
Aleksanteri Alumni arranged a guest lecture and discussion event in Finnish. More information on the Alumni pages.

Centre of Excellence Programme in Research

The Aleksanteri Institute is among the 36 research teams selected by The Board of the Academy of Finland to proceed to the second stage of the Centre of Excellence call. The aim of the CoE, Choices on Russian Modernisation, is to reach a new definition of the research agenda on Russian modernization,  and eventually result in a new paradigm in Russian studies. The Academy Board will make decisions on the units to be selected to the Centre of Excellence programme 2012-2017 in June 2011.

Read the release published by the Academy of Finland

Anna-Liisa Heusala appointed to the NORRUS board

The Research Council of Norway has appointed Dr. Anna-Liisa Heusala to the programme board for the NORRUS programme for 2010-2013. The programme belongs to the Strategic Priorities division in the Research Council. The aim of the programme is to strengthen Norwegian high level academic research on Russia.The emphasis is on  strategically important knowledge to Norway.  

The NORRUS -programme covers four thematic areas which all have their own calls for proposals. The annual budget of the programme averages 24 million NOK.
1. International cooperation, international law and geopolitics in the High North
2. Russian policy and social conditions in the northern areas
3. Russia's resource and environmental management and Norwegian-Russian cooperation in this field
4. Prerequisites for Norwegian-Russian industrial cooperation.

Nordic cooperation continues

NordForsk has granted funding for a three-year network project "Choices, Resources and Encounters in Russia and other European post-socialist states" (CERES). Aleksanteri Institute will be coordinating the network, as was the case with the previous project, "Northern Europe – from Cold War Division to Restructured Europe" (NERU) in 2007-2009. Partners in the network include School for Renewable Energy Science in Iceland, Århus University in Denmark, NUPI in Norway and Södertörn University in Sweden. The activities will begin during the autumn semester 2010.
Also the summer school 2011 for doctoral students, titled "Creativity and Control: Rephrasing Closed Societies" got funding from NordForsk.

September 29th
The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum Discusses Soviet aesthetics:
Andrey Maidansky (professor, Taganrog Institute of Economics and Management): "Aesthetic theories of Mihail Lifshits"
Edward Swiderski (professor, Univerisité de Fribourg):" Soviet aesthetics in the Post-Stalinist period"

September 29-30th
Symposium on the Philosophy of the Activity Theory

September 27th
A book launch event at 3 pm: Dina Khapaeva: Nightmares: Literature and Life
(Koshmar: Literatura i zhizn', Moscow, Text, 2010)

September 23rd
Georgia Two Years after the August War a seminar at the Aleksanteri Institute (Unioninkatu 33, Helsinki) on Thursday September 23rd at 1-3 pm. Keynote address by H.E. Amiran Kavadze, Ambassador of Georgia.

September 16th
Research Agenda of the Aleksanteri Institute  – A series of short sessions presenting ongoing research at 1 pm - 3.10 pm at the institute 2nd floor meeting room. Programme of the day is published here.

September 9th
Visiting Fellows Research Seminar in the 2nd floor meeting room at 2.15 pm - Florian Toepfl, Columbia University: "Blogging for the President: The Online-Diaries of Russian Governors"
Please see the seminar site for more information and how to register!

September 3rd-4th
Aleksanteri Institute arranges a Symposium on the Problems of Stalinism, focusing on the different explanatory models of Stalinism as a political, sociological and cultural phenomenon and discussing the theoretical and methodological approaches to it. More information on the symposium site.

September 2nd
Seminar What has changed in Russia? - Two Years of Medvedev's Presidencyat 9 am - 1 pm, Aleksanteri institute 3rd floor premises (Unioninkatu 33, Helsinki. Programme and how to register available at the seminar site.

September 2nd
Second gathering of the Visiting Fellows Research Seminars in the 2nd floor meeting room at 2.15 pm with a lecture by Davide Torsello, University of Bergamo, Italy: "Corruption and Institutional Distrust in Eastern Europe: Empirical solutions to global threat" Please see the seminar site for more information and how to register!

August 31st
Book Presentation: The Northern Lights - Facets of Enlightenment Culture, at 2 pm in the Aleksanteri Institute 2nd floor meeting room.

August 26th
Prof. Daniela Steila from University of Turin, Italy opened the new series of Aleksanteri Institute Visiting Fellows Research Seminars in the ground floot meeting room at 2.15 pm with her lecture entitled "History of Thought and National Identity - What does “Russian philosophy” mean?" Please see the seminar site for more information.

August 26th
A workshop with Kirill Postoutenko was organised by the Graduate School. Postoutenko also gave an open guest lecture entitled "Totalitarian Communication: How It Works, and Why It (Sometimes) Fails".

August 3rd-19th
Aleksanteri Institute organised a course entitled Contemporary Nationalisms around the World at the Helsinki Summer School.

August 2nd-3rd
A memorial seminar for Professor Richard Stites The Passion of Argument was held at the National Library.

July 27th
Kikimora Publications launched an anthology on changes in Russian society, environmental issues, culture and policies at the ICCEES conference in Stockholm

Witnessing Change in Contemporary Russia is edited by Tomi Huttunen and Mikko Ylikangas.

June 6th -11th
International Summer School Civil Society Around the Baltic Sea in the Åland islands was organised by Aleksanteri-institute and the Neru network.

June 9th
Visiting Fellow Rosie Read at the Research Seminar: Spaces of charity in the Czech welfare state? Understanding welfare transformation, gendered agency and voluntary action in Czech hospitals.

June 3rd
Guest lecture by Kosovo Minister of Integration, Mr. Besim Beqaj: The European Perspective of the Western Balkans, at 4.30 pm in the Aleksanteri Institute 2nd floor meeting room. More information and how to register.

June 2nd
Book launch: Suuri ja mahtava metodologia! Lähestymistapoja Venäjän ja Itä-Euroopan tutkimukseen. More information in Finnish here.

May 27th
A seminar Venäjä uutisten takana - Arjen turvallisuus discussing issues of everyday safety in Russia was held at the University Main Building, Runeberg Hall at 3-5 pm as part of the Helsinki Insight -campaign. More information in Finnish.

May 26th
Project PRIMTS - Prospect for Integration of Migrants from ”Third Countries” and their Labour Market Situations organised a seminar at 2 pm -4.30 pm at the Aleksanteri Institute. The event was held in Finnish, and more information - also in Finnish - can be found here (pdf).

May 19th
Research Agenda of the Aleksanteri Institute  – A series of short sessions presenting ongoing research at 1 pm - 3.30 pm at the institute 2nd floor meeting room. Programme of the day is published here.

May 15th
M.Pol.Sc. David Dusseault will defend his thesis "Elite Bargaining and the Evolution of Centre-Periphery Relations in Post-Soviet Russia: A Comparative Analysis" at the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Helsinki, on 15th May 2010 at 10 o'clock in the University main bulding AUDXII (Unioninkatu 34). The opponent will be, Doc. Christer Pursiainen and Prof. Raimo Väyrynen will act as custos.

May 15th
Getting Energy to EU – New EU-funded project started

Margarita Balmaceda (Professor of International Relations and Diplomacy, Seton Hall University and Associate Researcher, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies and Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute, USA) has started a research project Getting Energy from Russia to Europe: Domestic political conditions in the energy-poor transit states of the former USSR and risks to energy transit to the European Union.The project is hosted by the Aleksanteri Institute and the University of Helsinki and funded by the European Union 7th Framework Programme’s Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowship, a fellowship programme that aims at bringing top-level scholars into the European Research Area.

The University of Helsinki is currently hosting two Marie Curie IIF Fellows.  The project proposal was exceptionally highly rated in the evaluation process and was granted evaluation scores that only one proposal among all the proposals submitted in 2007-2009 exceeded. The project is grounded in earlier cooperation between the Aleksanteri Institute and Prof. Balmaceda during her 5-month stay at the Institute as a Visiting Fellow in 2009. The project lasts from mid-May 2010 until mid-September 2011. Find out more on the project.

May 12th
Graduate School Day was held in Helsinki, May 12th, at 10-13. Prof. Pauliina Raento from Human Geography, an experienced editor of scientific journals, shared her insights on publishing and writing as a strategic resource. Registration by May 7th at

May 12th
Visiting Fellow Rosa Magnusdottir gave a presentation entitled Organized Interactions: Soviet Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries at the research seminar at 2 pm.

May 6th
Visiting Fellow Huang Lifu gave a presentation entitled "Обзор китайских исследований истории России в столетней ретроспективе" at the research seminar at 10 am.

May 5th
The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum was exceptionally held on a Wednesday from 3 to 5 pm. The title of the meeting is Mielipuolisuus ja nerous venäläisessä kulttuurissa and the theme was introduced by researcher Maija Könönen and actor Martti Suosalo.

May 3rd
A Guest Lecture by Mr. Vladimir Shopov: "Post-Transition Bulgaria: A Fluid Polity Struggling with Europeanization". More information on the event page.

April 29th

The independence of the Baltic States was not self-evident. In the opening address of the seminar entitled Independence Regained - The Baltic States back to the World Map, Lithuanian Minister for Foreign Affairs Audronius Ažubalis (photo) thanked Finland for supporting Lithuania during independency process. He stated that today Russia should concentrate on the area east of the Baltic countries instead of Georgia and that the safety of the professional journalists should be guaranteed.
Read more about the seminar here >>

April 27th
Visiting Fellow Ivan Tchalakov presented his topic "Mancur Olson on socialist and post-socialist economies - Reflections from previously developed theoretical frame" at the research seminar that takes place in the Aleksanteri Institute 2nd floor meeting room at 2pm.

April 15th
Spring seminar of the Finnish Graduate School for Russian and East European Studies
"The Foundational Questions of Science: Why do we do the things we do?" Lectures at 11.00-15.00 by Adrián Bene, Ivan Tchalakov and Rósa Magnúsdóttir were open to public.

April 13th


The latest issue of Aleksanteri News sheds light on the numerous research projects that are being conducted at the Aleksanteri Institute at the moment. Interesting questions are asked about the nature of competition in socialist society, the prospects for third country migrants and the strategies Russia and China are developing for their post-Communist transition.

Face of the Month of issue 2/2010 is Dr Anna-Liisa Heusala, whose expertise in Russian law and administration is crucial for the newly launched project Venäjän uudet pelisäännöt. The project is a part of Helsinki Insight - a larger campaign at the University of Helsinki.

Download Aleksanteri News 2/2010 here!

April 12th
The April gathering of the The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum was titled Addressing Russian Cultural History. Ben Hellman spoke about the filmatization of "One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich" by Casper Wrede, and Brendan Humphreys gave a talk on: "A Russian Prince and English Hero: Obolensky and the Anglo-Russian exiles". 2nd floor meeting room at 4 pm

April 8th
The Aleksanteri Institute and Emergency Services College (Pelastusopisto) together organized an event discussing the issues of communication in emergency situations. For more information, please see the invitation (pdf), in Finnish.

March 23rd
Visiting Fellow Vlad Strukov at the Research Seminar:
Russia Tomorrow? Digital Broadcasting in and from the Federation (the Case of Russia Today)

March 8th
Tshehov, Stanislavski ja venäläinen teatteri - The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum discusses Russian theatre. Presentations (in Finnish) by Liisa Byckling and Kristiina Repo.

March 2nd
Visiting Fellow Volodymyr Kravchenko's presentation at the Research Seminar:
Ukrainian-Russian Borderland: In Search of Identity (ies).

February 24th
A Mini-Seminar on Nationalism and Racism in Russia "Kansallismielisyys ja rasismi Venäjällä - Mistä on kyse?" at 5 - 7 pm, Aleksanteri Institute, 2nd floor meeting room. Speakers: Markku Kangaspuro, Viktor Shnirelman, Olga Davydova. Languages: Finnish & English. For more information see the event page (in Finnish)

February 9th
Research Seminar at 2-4pm, Viktor Shnirelman: A Soviet puzzle. Was it possible to be racist in the country of internationalism?

February 8th
The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum gathered together to discuss the questions of Bakhtin, Russian linguistics and philosophy. Presentations by Tapani Laine and Mika Lähteenmäki were held in Finnish.

February 3rd
Igumen Mitrofan gave an open lecture on the history of the Pechenga Monastery at 5 pm. More information in Finnish here.

February 1st


This year's first issue of Aleksanteri News is packed with information about the upcoming events at the Institute and its network.

New projects, visiting fellows and graduate school students are also introduced as well as the latest books published by Kikimora Publications.

Download Aleksanteri News 1/2010 here!


January 29th
A half-day workshop entitled “Current Tendencies in Social Work Research in Finland and Russia” brought together researchers and PhD students to present the ongoing research projects in both countries and to discuss the current tendencies in social work research.

January 29th

Jouni Järvinen defended his dissertation, Normalization and Charter 77 – Violence, Commitment and Resistance in Czechoslovakia in the faculty of social sciences of the University of Helsinki on 29.1.2010. The custos was professor Seppo Hentilä and the opponent professor Michael Long (Baylor University, USA).

“Järvinen’s work brings much needed insight into the normalization period in Czechoslovakia, thus far underresearched”, stated Long and noted the dissertation especially valuable in that it examines Charter 77, apart from the angle of political history, even in a cultural and sociological perspective.

Photo by Erkka Lehto

Long estimated the theory of violence, applied in Järvinen’s research, as a particularly suitable tool to discuss the dialogue between the dissidents and the governmental actors. As Järvinen aptly elucidates in his book, Charta 77 was a hybrid between a traditional dissident activity and political action. It enabled to broaden the spectrum of questions raised to, for instance, human rights and protection of environment.

The dissertation is published in Kikimora Publications Series A (A21) and sold at the Aleksanteri Institute.

January 26th
Visiting Fellow Elena Trubina presented her topic Investigating everyday mobility in the light of "mobility turn" at the research seminar

January 18th
First meeting of the year of The Aleksanteri Institute Cultural Forum was held in Finnish. Arja Rosenholm and Veli-Pekka Tynkkynen gave presentations about nature in Russian literature and geography of the 1900's ("1900-luvun venäläisen kaunokirjallisuuden ja maantieteen vuoropuhelua luonnosta").

Past events by year | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004