Johanna Niemi was appointed to the deanship in a Faculty Council meeting on 7 September 2021 at the proposal of the appointment committee. The Faculty Council’s decision was in line with the proposal of the appointment committee.
In its statement, the committee notes that Niemi has strong practical experience of a diverse range of management and leadership duties, as well as extensive experience of international collaboration and networks. Furthermore, the appointment committee believes Niemi’s understanding of the Faculty’s operating environment is comprehensive, as is her vision for its future as part of the University’s strategic plan.
Johanna Niemi emphasises the importance of cooperation and hopes that the entire Faculty staff will contribute to the unit’s development during her term as the dean.
“The Faculty of Law is a very strong unit overall, and successful in international rankings. My hope is that I will be able to support the Faculty’s further improvement, as well as its development into an even better place to work, teach and conduct research,” Niemi says.
At the moment, Niemi is working as professor of procedural law at the University of Turku. While she has been working in Turku for several years, she has a long history at the University of Helsinki, which she considers her alma mater. Niemi defended her doctoral thesis concerning debt adjustment legislation in 1995 in Helsinki, after which she served for a long time in various positions relating to procedural law as well as a professor of gender studies in law at the University of Helsinki. From 2010 to 2013, she served as the vice-dean for academic affairs at the Faculty of Law.
In her research, Niemi has focused particularly on regulation pertaining to over-indebtedness, criminal procedure and gendered violence, always underlining the perspective of people’s rights.
In a call for applications open from 14 March to 11 April 2021, the University sought candidates for the position of dean for a four-year term beginning on 1 January 2022. At the turn of the year, a new term also begins for vice-deans, for which positions a call for applications will be announced in the autumn.