Network Contact Information

Crisis, Communication and Society Research Network

Dr. Soc. Sci., University Lecturer
Salli Hakala
+358 2941 23770

Assistant Professor (Docent)
Ph.D. Johanna Sumiala
+358 2941 40813

M.Soc.Sc, PhD candidate
Minttu Tikka
+358 50 318 7606

Department of Social Research
Communication Research Centre CRC
Unioninkatu 37 (P.O. Box 54)
00014 University of Helsinki


Crisis, Communication and Society

The Crisis, Communication and Society (CCS) Research Network is ideal for bringing together a community of researchers from diverse academic and professional backgrounds, which is vital for an interdisciplinary approach.

If You are interested, please don't hesitate to contact us!


Je suis Charlie - The symbolic battle and struggle over attention (University of Tampere)

Workshop on Media, Event and Social Theory - Transnational Challenges (University of Tampere)

Small leak or significant release? An ethnographic study of sensemaking and sensegiving in a nuclear power plant emergency exercise
Maarit Pedak, Salla-Maaria Laaksonen, Salli Hakala, Minttu Tikka and Antti Silvast

In Finnish: Etnografinen tutkimus onnettomuusharjoituksen viestinnästä
Pieni vuoto, iso päästö – Kriisiharjoitus ydinvoimalassa.

Salli Hakala, Minttu Tikka, Antti Silvast, Maarit Pedak & Salla-Maaria Laaksonen

Past events

School Shootings – Global phenomenon of the media age?

Time: Jan 8, 2013, 14-16
Venue: Think Corner (Tiedekulma),
Aleksanterinkatu 7, Helsinki

The event will launch an international anthology, School Shootings: Mediatized Violence in a Global Age (Emerald). In this cross-disciplinary book school shootings are explored and analysed as a global phenomenon of the media era from a variety of cultural and social perspectives. The articles cover themes such as the relationship of journalism and violence, the roles of the victims and witnesses in the media, and the young and the visual imagery of violence. The international collective of writers represent different disciplines, including media research, psychology and sociology.


Symposium: Political Theaters of Suffering: Humanitarian Politics and Representation of Distant Suffering

Time: 15 March, 2012
Venue: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
Kruunuvuorenkatu 4, 2nd Floor, Helsinki

This symposium will explore new ways of discussing and analysing how suffering midst crises, catastrophes and wars can be politically constructed and mediated. Catastrophes with global spectatorship, and massively circulated representations of human suffering can function as political theatres in which humanity, human worth, citizenship, belonging, political significance and political power are projected, created and assessed. Humanitarian imagery and rhetoric can be used in justifying wars and power political acts. Suffering and basic human rights can work as motivations and legitimation for military and political agency. The tsunami in Japan, Haiti's earthquake, the floods in Pakistan, the WTC-terror attacks, the war in Libya, or the civilian suffering in the Afghan or Somalia wars have all acted as spectacular dramas of a global scale. The suffering of the affected individuals has been understood, felt, reacted to, politicized or even forgotten in distinct ways. Humanitarian NGO's, news media, political actors, states and the military all create and communicate various distinct types of suffering, different ways of encountering it, as well as different solutions and ways of alleviation. In the liberal world order, violent crises, vulnerability and ultimately suffering can invite and construct political and analytical windows of opportunity.


Crisis, Trauma and Journalism Seminar

Time: 27 January, 2012
Venue: Main Building, University of Helsinki, Small Hall

The seminar aims at analyzing the coverage and reporting of crises in the media from a perspective of media research and ethics: How to encounter people in distress? How to shoot visual material of them and how to interview them? How does the news media get organised during a crisis? What are the experiences of a field reporter in connection to the newsroom? Why do some disasters become media spectacles?

International phenomenon, national tragedies:
Symposium on School Shootings

Time: 16 June,.2011
Venue: Publicum-building, University of Turku, Finland

In recent decades, countries in Europe and North America have repeatedly experienced shooting sprees by young perpetrators at schools and university campuses. The Finnish research project Everyday life and Insecurity will organize an international symposium at the University of Turku, on June 16th, 2011, to introduce and share research findings on rampage shootings in Finland and the United states. The consequences of
the shootings for local communities and societies at large, as well as the media coverage of the incidents will be discussed. The speakers are international and Finnish researchers on school and campus violence.

Contacts and further information: Johanna Nurmi, johnurm(at)

12th European Conference on Traumatic Stress:
Human Rights and Psychotraumatology

Time: 2-5 June, 2011
Venue: University of Vienna, Austria

Since World War II a comprehensive body of law has been developed to protect and promote human rights. Since then the influence of human rights violations on both physical and mental health has been increasingly studied, with the focus on trauma and PTSD in particular. Mental health professionals have played a prominent role in documenting the consequences of human rights abuses, such as torture, forced displacement or massive rape associated with political conflict. Since late 1970`s specialized centers provide care and rehabilitation for survivors of political violence, new therapies and medication have been developed to ease the suffering of survivors of severe human rights violations.

News in Crisis?
Challenging News Cultures in a YouTube Era

Time: 12.15-16.00, Friday, 18th of March, 2011
Venue: University of Helsinki, Main building room 6 

Registration (expired) by Monday 14th of March, 2011.


YouTube matters for news. It offers a platform and a community in which different actors come together to make news from the events around the world. But instead of an organized harmony, this news platform is often characterized rather as a cacophony of constant uploading, circulation and remediation of video clips. On YouTube, everyone can, at least in theory, have his/her own news channel and thus contribute to a global news culture.

This one day conference: "NEWS IN CRISIS? Exploring News Cultures in a YouTube Era", examines how YouTube and other social networking sites challenge and offer opportunities for news making today and how these emerging media should be changing the study of news.

This conference will bring together academics and journalists engaged in research and practice about news and news cultures (old and new) and online news. Speakers include i.a. Professor Terhi Rantanen, LSE, Professor John Downing, Southern Illinois University, Editor-in-Chief Kaius Niemi, Ilta-Sanomat, Docent Kaarina Nikunen, University of Tampere, Visiting researcher, PhD Student Tanja Aitamurto, Stanford Center for Design Research/ Tampere University, Researcher Gavan Titley, National University of Ireland Maynooth/ University of Helsinki.