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20.11.2014

ANU KAJAMAA VISITED COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY, NEW YORK, USA

Dr Anu Kajamaa was an invited lecturer at Columbia University, New York, USA during November 10-14th, 2014. In her talk, she presented her research and gave an overview on the evolution of Activity Theory and Change Laboratory intervention methodology for enhancing collective learning and change. She was also an invited discussant in a symposium at Columbia University Teachers College entitled "Pedagogy of Social Imagination in Language Learning and Teaching: A Focus on Mobilization of Knowledge and Boundary Crossing". During her stay, she gave feedback on her colleagues paper manuscripts and exchanged many ideas on educational systems and pedagogical practices used in Finland and the USA. Her collaboration with the research team in New York will intensively continue after the visit.

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20.11.2014

KUKKA RANTA WON MASTER´S AWARD 2nd PRIZE IN UniPID DEVELOPMENT STUDIES 2014

Kukka Ranta, doctoral student at the Center for Research on Activity, Development and Learning CRADLE, was granted by the Finnish University Partnership for International Development (UniPID) and the Finnish Society for Development Studies Master's Award in Development Studies 2014 2nd place for her thesis: Ryöstetty meri - Euroopan unionin kalastussopimusten vaikutukset Senegalin pienkalastajien ruokaturvaan ja elinkeinoon (Robbed Sea – The consequences of the EU fisheries agreements for the Food Security and Livelihood of local fishermen in Senegal)

Photo credit: Tommy Standun

UniPID NEWS, 18. Novmber 2014: "Ranta's study reveals how the international politics on fishing also have an impact on emigration, on understanding environmental sustainability and on reaching the Millennium Development Goals. In media and immigration studies, the focus has usually been on the effects of immigration on societies and countries which have not been able to assimilate newcomers into their social environment. Ranta, on the contrary, examines the reasons behind emigration from the viewpoint of unemployed Senegalese fishers. She gives a voice to the "voiceless subalterns" and points out their lack of democratic influence in issues in what were formerly their own fishing waters. The ethnological method applied has demanded intensive commitment to the life situations of the fishers and innovativeness in interviewing.  Ranta's study highlights the importance of intercultural dialogue and necessity of fieldwork. For this positive endeavour, Ranta's study delivers an outstanding qualification."

The award selection board comprised of emeritus professor Rauni Räsänen, who acted as the chair of the board, emeritus professors Reijo E. Heinonen and Olavi Luukkanen. The award is given annually to an accomplished Master's thesis related to global development or development studies.

Kukka Ranta's earlier non-fiction book Kalavale about overfishing written with Emma Kari was partly popularized from Ranta's academic research data. The book was awarded with Kelpoa kehitystä (Good Development) prize in 2012 by Kehys for the significant work in promoting policy coherence for development. The book can be downloaded for free. Her other publications, articles and photo reports about overfishing and immigration can be seen from her website.

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07.11.2014

ANNARITA KOLI WILL DEFEND HER PhD THESIS ON NOVEMBER 29

Annarita Koli, doctoral student of CRADLE's doctoral program, will defend her PhD dissertation on Saturday, November 29 at 12:00 AM. Address: Unioninkatu 34, University of Helsinki Main Building, auditorium XV, 4th floor.

The title of the thesis is 'Työn mieltä etsimässä - Työhyvinvoinnin edistäminen ammatinopettajien työssä' ('Searching for the personal sense of work: Promoting work-related well-being in vocational teachers’ work'). The dissertation research has been supervised by Kirsti Launis and Jaakko Virkkunen. The official opponent will be Professor Matti Vartiainen (Aalto University). Yrjö Engeström will serve as custos. The defense will be held in Finnish. This will be the 33rd dissertation coming out of CRADLE's doctoral program.

More in Finnish on Faculty web pages:

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07.11.2014

COURSE ON THE CHANGE LABORATORY METHOD MARCH, 2-6, 2015, HELSINKI, FINLAND

We are pleased to inform you that the Center for Research on Activity, Development and Learning CRADLE will arrange a course on the Change Laboratory method. The course will take place in Helsinki March 2.-6.2015. We invite researchers and development teams that want to use the method to enroll for the course. Please find details of the course program and the application process in the attached course brochure. The course language will be English.

Jaakko Virkkunen, Anu Kajamaa, Yrjö Engeström and Annalisa Sannino

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27.10.2014

BODIL SVENDSEN AND TONY BURNER PhD CANDIDATES FROM NORWAY VISITED THE CRADLE

Hongda Lin, Monica Lemos, Tony Burner, Bodil Svendsen, Eva Tresserras, Giuseppe Ritella and Terhi Esko. Picture by Liubov Vetoshkina

They attended Helsinki's summer school a year ago, where they did a course on activity theory and formative interventions. Now they came back for a week to present thier research and receive some feedback, and see what other PhD candidates are writing about and how they use activity theory.

Bodil's thesis is about constructing and testing a Teacher Professional development (TPD) model for science teachers in upper high school. The PhD project is based on experience from both national (SUN) and international projects (SINUS), and will also build on intervention in practice. The TPD model is based on teachers' own needs in their academic environment in schools. The focus will be directed towards the development of teachers' own practice using inquiry teaching methods.

Tony's research is about changes in teachers' and students' perceptions and practices of formative assessment of writing in English as a foreign language. He is particularly interested in how the writing portfolio can enhance formative assessment. He uses activity theory to analyze contradictions in assessment practices, before using the portfolio as a mediating artifact to address the contradictions.

They mentioned they were also very fortunate to have a couple of supervision sessions with Yrjö. It has been very rewarding for us to visit CRADLE again and hope to keep in touch.

Thank you for your hospitality, sharing of your work, and providing valuable feedback to us.

Bodil Svendsen and Tony Burner
PhD candidates from Norway

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15.10.2014

CALL FOR SHORT PAPERS: EGOS 2015 ATHENS: SUB-THEME 17: ACTIVITY THEORY AND ORGANIZATIONS

Dear Colleagues,

We are looking forward to receiving interesting short paper proposals to the forthcoming sub-theme 17: "Activity Theory and Organizations"  taking place in the 31st European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS), in Athens, Greece, July 2-4, 2015. Please view the description of the sub-theme here.

Submission period for short papers for the 31st EGOS Colloquium 2015:
Started: September 8, 2014
Ends: Monday, JANUARY 12, 2015

Please note the Guidelines and criteria for the submission of short papers here.

We are happy to announce two keynote speeches to be given in the sub-theme 17:

- Professor Giuseppe Scaratti (Faculty of Economics, Catholic University of Milan, Italy): The Change Laboratory mirroring as a dialogical process. Learning from Bakhtin

- Dr. Hannele Kerosuo & Professor Reijo Miettinen (CRADLE, University of Helsinki, Finland): From an idea to transformative experimentation:  The concept of knotworking in construction industry

If you have any questions please contact: anu.kajamaa@helsinki.fi

For more information about the EGOS conference please see

Best wishes, convenors of the sub-theme 17,

Yrjö Engeström, Anu Kajamaa & Zlatko Bodrožić

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10.10.2014

ISCAR CONGRESS PRESENTATION BY MARCO PEREIRA QUEROL: Concept Formation in Policy Implementation: The case of Waste Management in Paraná State

In public policy implementation, legislation, norms and regulations are usually seen as given and ready concepts that have to be implemented at local level. The aim of this project is to better understand the process of concept formation during the process of Policy Implementation. We take as a case the Implementation of Waste Management Policy in Paraná State between the years 2012 – 2014.

In this project, we found a variation in process of policy implementation between top-down and  bottom-up approaches. The comparison of two cases that follow different approaches shows that the most successful process of policy implementation takes place when local actors are not only involved, but they also are the one who take the initiative of implementing projects. This suggests a crucial role of agency formation for policy implementation.

In the project we also found that the process of policy implementation requires the concretization of norms, laws and regulations. These regulations are part of the concept not concepts themselves. We give the example of the formation of the new concept of “Multifunctional Intermunicipal Consortium” (MIC)  that emerged in one of the cases. This concept was a solution to a contradiction inner to the Waste Management. The solutions requested by the new legislation were seen as socially, environmentally and economically important, but they were also very demanding in terms of human and financial resources. The MIC concept emerged as a solution to this contradiction.

The research was done in collaboration with the CRADLE project 'Concept Formation and Volition in Collaborative Work'. Click on the link below to watch the video that gives a brief introduction of the project and the preliminary findings.

Concept Formation and Policy Implementation: The case of Waste Management in Paraná State.

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08.9.2014

KLAUS-PETER SCHULZ FROM ICN BUSINESS SCHOOL, FRANCE VISITED THE CRADLE

Associate professor of Strategy and Innovation, Klaus-Peter Schulz from ICN Business School, Nancy-Metz, France visited the CRADLE during 27th of August - 4th of September, 2014. Many researchers from the CRADLE exchanged ideas with him. During his visit, Klaus-Peter and Postdoctoral Researcher Anu Kajamaa from the CRADLE, UH, gave a seminar on Organizational Diffusion of Change, Learning and Development. The seminar was based on their co-authored paper, recently presented at the European group for Organizational Studies
(EGOS) conference, sub-theme "Activity theory and Organizations". The discussants in the seminar were Professor Emeritus Jaakko Virkkunen from CRADLE and Dr. Denise Shelley Newnham from Les Roches-Gruyère, University of Applied Sciences Switzerland. The presentation and the discussants insightful comments evoked a lively and interesting discussion. Klaus-Peter is a long-term collaborator of the CRADLE research centre. See his homepage.

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01.09.2014

CRADLE’S 20TH ANNIVERSARY SYMPOSIUM

Yjrö Engeström, Reijo Miettinen and Jaakko Virkkunen
Picture by Dr. Merja Helle, Head of Research, Media Concepts Research Group, Aalto School of Arts, Design and Architecture

The Center for Research on Activity, Development and Learning CRADLE was founded in the fall of 1994. We celebrated our 20th anniversary by means of an open symposium “Activity, Learning, and Agency from Below”, held on the 1st of September in the Athena Building, Siltavuorenpenger 3A, Auditorium 107.

The symposium focused on new challenges to our research. Two prominent and extremely interesting scholars, namely Ference Marton from Sweden and Heila Lotz-Sisitka from South Africa, gave invited talks. The program of the symposium is down below.

The symposium was also available through Skype.

Yrjö Engeström
Director of CRADLE

 Program:

ACTIVITY, LEARNING, AND AGENCY FROM BELOW
20th anniversary symposium of CRADLE

September 1, 2014
Institute of Behavioural Sciences, University of Helsinki
Athena Building, Siltavuorenpenger 3A, Auditorium 107

09:30 Welcome and reflections on our path
Yrjö Engeström, Reijo Miettinen and Jaakko Virkkunen
10:15 Invited talk
Professor Emeritus Ference Marton (University of Gothenburg): Sameness and difference in learning
11:30 Celebrating CRADLE's founding fellows
12:00 Lunch
13:15 Invited talk
 Professor Heila Lotz-Sisitka (Rhodes University, South Africa]: Transgressive learning in the Anthropocene:  Agency from below
14:30 Coffee
15:00 Future pointers
Representatives of CRADLE's PhDs graduated from CRADLE's doctoral program, foreign visitors, CRADLE's partner organizations in working life and current doctoral students: Professor Sampsa Hyysalo (Aalto University), Professor Katsuhiro Yamazumi (Kansai University, Japan), Ari Ahonen, CEO (RYM Oy), Doctoral student Monica Lemos (CRADLE)
16:00 Closing of the symposium

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22.08.2014

FROM TEAMS TO KNOTS IN KOREAN

Yrjö Engeström's book From Teams to Knots: Activity-Theoretical Studies of Collaboration and Learning at Work(Cambridge University Press, 2008) has been published in Korean by Lifelong Learning Books.

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