Jaakko Kauko
+358 50 3187788
Professor (Education Policy), Faculty of Education and Culture, Tampere University
“In studying education policy and comparative education, I explore the use of knowledge in policymaking, quality assurance and evaluation as a governance tool, and the dynamics between political actors. I am inspired with the theoretical questions of complexity and contingency.” Read more…


Nelli Piattoeva
+358 40 1901471
Associate Professor, New Social Research programme, Tampere University
Dr Nelli Piattoeva is Associate Professor at Tampere University, Finland. She completed her post-doc at the Institute for Advanced Social research in Tampere in 2012-2014 and in 2017-2018, she was a visiting scholar at the Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany. Piattoeva was appointed Associate Professor of education (tenure track) in 2018. Read more…



Anna Medvedeva
Postdoctoral researcher, Tampere University
“I am interested in researching higher education policy, internationalization and multilingualism in the academia. My PhD study at the University of Helsinki was about international master’s programs and internationalization of higher education. As a result of this research I realized that the issue of language is central to the development of higher education, which prompted my next project about languages in the academia and how their position is negotiated in terms of value, power and practices. In the future, I hope to develop teaching and research collaborations within the following topics: tuition fees, student politics,  inclusion/exclusion of international students, multilingualism in higher education and mapping of the European HE language policies.”


Galina Gurova
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“I am based in Moscow and enjoy work in the international environment. I study how education policy works at the local level, and what effects it has for teachers, students and administrators.” Read more…


Ioana Tîstea
Doctoral researcher,  Tampere University
“My doctoral research is a study of educational knowledge production “about”, “for”, “with” and “by” minoritized subjects in a Nordic/Finnish context through reflexivity, autoethnography, and genealogy.  I also work as a part-time research assistant for the project Re-Connect / Re-Collect: Crossing the Divides through Memories of Cold War Childhoods.


Íris Santos
Postdoctoral researcher, Tampere University and University of Lisbon
Íris Santos is a postdoctoral researcher at the Faculty of Administration and Business, at Tampere University, Finland. Her current work focuses on the international dynamics of development cooperation for education, more specifically, her project analyses the presence an influence of national education experts in international organisations. She recently (March 2022) defended her PhD dissertation titled Externalisations in the Portuguese Parliament and print media: A complexity approach to education policymaking processes, which presents an analysis of the complex dynamics emerging from the interactions between global, national, and local actors in policymaking processes in Portugal.

Her research interests are diverse, focusing on education policymaking, the dynamics of global-national-local networks of actors involved in education governance and policy, global citizenship education and sustainable development from a critical post-colonialist point of view. In her research she uses complexity thinking as her onto-epistemic standpoint to aggregate diversified theories, which offer complementary angles to the analysis of the societal phenomena related with power struggles, knowledge production and expertise influence, and Politics of education.


Jarmo Kallunki
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“I study politics, sociology, and economics of education. My current research interests are knowledge networks and expertise in higher education policy-making, and I am a member of the KNETS project. Currently I work at the Faculty of Social Sciences in the Tampere University.”


Joni Forsell
University instructor, Tampere University
“I am interest in how knowledge, power and expertise are intertwined and how they interact in educational policymaking. Currently, as part of my doctoral thesis, I am examining how knowledge is cited as evidence in the Finnish higher education admission reform.”



Jussi Puukka
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“My research interests are arts education, education policy, and poststructural policy analysis. In my research I am analysing different policy documents and articles from the media. The research investigates the different discourses in which arts education is dealt with.”


Kimmo Kuortti
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“My research interests are transnational education policy, public – private networks in transnational education and cross-sectoral shifts in education policy-making. I am currently studying the development of education export policy and strategies in Finland and Germany focusing on commodification of education.” Learn more…


Oshie Nishimura-Sahi
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“My research interests include the nature of global education policies and trends, the transnational mobility of educational ideas and the interplay among multiple actors in the processes of policy transfer. My dissertation is concerned with a global education policy, namely, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) to understand the relational, networked and assembled nature of globalised education policy, challenging the hierarchy in the binary conception of the global as policy lender/circulator and the local as policy borrower.

I am also interested in utilising concepts and approaches to knowledge production that have been developed by Japanese thinkers. Using Japanese ideas developed in the periphery of the academic landscape, I attempt to contribute to the advancement of the methodological and epistemological diversity in comparative education research from the decolonial perspective.”

Saija Volmari
Doctoral researcher, University of Helsinki
“My main research interests are the role of knowledge and expertise in education policymaking and politics, globalization and education, spatial and temporal social justice, and new materialist and post-structural social inquiry. My current research projects are a comparative study on the use of evidence and expertise in the recent curriculum reforms in the Nordic countries, and an interdisciplinary research project on the effects of demographic change (e.g. aging of population, declining birth rate, and migration) on the organization of early childhood, pre-school and basic education in the future.”


Tram Ninh
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“I have the research interest in the politics of education, in which I pay much attention to education governance, policies, and reforms – especially in higher education. My current dissertation topic is on ‘Ideology and transformation in higher education governance in Vietnam: Path dependency and path transformation.’ The research investigates the institutional autonomy policy thread in Vietnam to give an insight into the interplay and complex influences of three institutional logics of Confucianism, socialism, and neoliberalism in the transformation of higher education governance in the country.” Read more…


Paula Silvén
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“In my doctoral thesis I explore the ways Finnish universities use strategic steering as a performance management tool to accommodate the criteria of the funding model. The main objective of my research is to analyse academic resistance and a formation of neoliberal academic subjectivity in a relation to strategic steering, performance management and research funding.”


Vera G. Centeno
Senior researcher, Tampere University
“In researching the global-local nexus in education, I am interested in capturing global and local processes in relation to each other and from different angles.” Read more…



Santeri Sorsa
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“My doctoral thesis is about upper secondary vocational education in Finland and its latest reform. In my research I study what are the ideals behind the reform, and how is this reform experienced in everyday education by students. In my theoretical frame, I use theories of ideology, politics, governance and culture in vocational education, and how they shape education and what are the outcomes of it.”


Valeriia Smirnova
Doctoral researcher, Tampere University
“My research interests include education policy, curricula and large-scale assessment. In my PhD dissertation, I examine how nationalist discourses have shaped English language education in Russia over the last two decades. What makes the case of foreign language teaching societally interesting is that it by definition addresses such concepts as culture, the national and the global, identity, borders, the familiar and the other, and so on. I hope that my study will contribute to theoretical research on education policy implementation, on nationalism discourse in education and on the interrelation between nationalism and foreign language education.”


Nicklas Troedson
Doctoral researcher at Tampere University
“The working title of my dissertation project is “Comparing leadership autonomy in making the inclusive school”. My project is intended to examine how inclusive school policy is implemented by school principals in Finland and Sweden since 2006. This aims to increase our understanding of contextualised factors of implementing inclusion policies in school leadership. The starting point of 2006 is chosen with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in mind. The goal of the project is to investigate the experienced autonomy of school principals in relation to the municipal administration, from a comparative perspective.”


Antti Paakkari
Academy Postdoctoral Researcher, Tampere University
“My research focuses on critical analyses of educational technologies. I am interested in the intersections of ed-tech, datafication, digital governance and privatization. Lately I have studied Early Childhood Education with an eye on the assemblages of children and digital technologies. I work as an Academy Postdoctoral Researcher at the Faculty of Education and Culture in Tampere University. I am currently leading the research project Educational technologies and the privatization of public schooling (2021-2024, Funded by the Academy of Finland) and working in collaboration with VADA (The assessment of Early Childhood Education in the Era of Datafication) led by Maiju Paananen.”