Keynote speakers

Keynote speakers for the Nordic-Baltic ISCAR 2022 are Yrjö Engeström (University of Helsinki), Reijo Miettinen (University of Helsinki) & Shirin Vossoughi (Northwestern University).
Shirin Vossoughi


Shirin Vossoughi is an associate professor of Learning Sciences at Northwestern University’s School of Education and Social Policy, where she draws on ethnographic and interactional methods to study the cultural, socio-political, and ethical dimensions of human learning.

Vossoughi’s research centers on hybrid learning environments that blend formal and informal elements and support young people to develop, question and expand disciplinary and artistic knowledge in ways that nourish educational self-determination. She is particularly concerned with understanding the forms of pedagogical mediation, ethical relations, and developmental trajectories that take shape within these settings. Her current work looks closely at teaching and learning in making/STEAM environments (elementary and middle school students), and examines the role of written feedback on student writing in the context of political education (high school and college students).

Vossoughi has taught in schools, after-school and summer programs, and served as the director of a summer camp for youth in the Iranian diaspora. She takes a collaborative approach to research, partnering with teachers, families, and students to co-design and study the conditions that foster educational dignity and possibility.

Yrjö Engeström


Yrjö Engeström is Professor Emeritus of Education at University of Helsinki and Professor Emeritus of Communication at University of California, San Diego. He is Director of the Center for Research on Activity, Development and Learning (CRADLE) in Helsinki, and serves as visiting profesor at Rhodes University in South Africa and at University West in Sweden.

In his work Engeström applies and develops cultural-historical activity theory and the theory of expansive learning as frameworks for the study of transformations in educational settings, work activities and communities. He is known for the methodology of formative interventions, including the Change Laboratory method. His recent books include Learning by Expanding: An Activity-Theoretical Approach to Developmental Research (2nd Edition, 2015), Studies in Expansive Learning: Learning What Is Not Yet There (2016), and Expertise in Transition: Expansive Learning in Medical Work (2018), all published by Cambridge University Press. 

Reijo Miettinen


Reijo Miettinen is emeritus professor of adult education at the University of Helsinki.

He worked since 1995 in the Center for Activity Theory and Developmental Work Research (later CRADLE) and acted as the scientific director of the Finnish Graduate School in Science and Technology Studies in 2002-2007. His interests ranged from innovations  and research work to  teacher’s work, learning theories  and the connection between activity theory, pragmatism and actor network theory.

Lately he has studied the roots activity theory in German idealistic philosophy and connection of activity theory to the Bildung tradition in education. His books include National Innovation system. Scientific Concept or Political Rhetoric (Edita, 2002), Dialogue and Creativity. Activity theory in the study of science, technology and innovations (Lehmans, 2009) and Innovation, human capabilities and democracy. Towards an enabling welfare state (Oxford University Press, 2013).