Research Fellows 2021-2023


Personal profile page| Research activities | Oana on the video

Oana Cojocaru is a postdoctoral research fellow specialized in social and cultural history of Byzantium. Her interests include the history of children and youth in the Middle Byzantine period, history of everyday life, disability history and history of emotions. She has shared her research on perceptions and conceptions of childhood, as well as on everyday life experiences of children and the disabled in Medieval Byzantium in talks and publications.

Oana Cojocaru is currently doing research on the emotional world of Byzantine people, by exploring hope as an emotional practice structured in individuals’ and communities’ strategies to build a meaningful life.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Kirsi on the video

Kirsi Granberg, a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS, is the leader of Cancer Regulation and Immunology Research Group, which belongs to Prostate Cancer Research Center (PCRC). She has a title of docent in Cancer Genomics. Her research group aims to understand how altered epigenetic and gene regulation is driving tumorigenesis and immune suppression in brain tumors and prostate cancer by utilizing both computational and experimental biology approaches. They also develop new ways to utilize the associated features for improved diagnostics and patient care. Their research is funded by the Academy of Finland, Tampere University Hospital, and several foundations, including Cancer Foundation Finland, Emil Aaltonen Foundation, and Sigrid Juselius Foundation.

Kirsi Granberg is the chair of Finnish Brain Tumor Research Association (FiBTRA), the president of Scandinavian Society of Neuro-Oncology (SNOG), and the chair of the scientific board of FICAN-MID and Tays Cancer Centre. She has organized several scientific symposia. She has a wide teaching experience, and she has developed university teaching in several different ways. She received a Good Teacher award in 2020.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Sara on the video

Sara Hamis (PhD in Mathematics) is a postdoctoral research fellow working in the Prostate Cancer Research Center in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology. She works as a mathematician in interdisciplinary teams to design and deliver state-of-the-art research that (i) advances the research field of mathematical oncology and (ii) has applications in pre-clinical and clinical cancer research. She is currently using mathematical modelling to study evolutionary trajectories that result in treatment resistance in prostate cancer.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Petteri on the video

Petteri Hansen is a postdoctoral research fellow in educational sciences. His research interests include sociological systems theory, sociology of education, comparative education, social studies, and Finnish teacher education.

Hansen’s recent research activities have focused on future projections and future policies in Nordic education (PROFE). Currently, he is conducting research on education and schooling in the next society.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Matti on the video

Dr. Matti Isakov, a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS, obtained his doctoral degree at Tampere University of Technology in 2012 (title of his doctoral thesis: Strain Rate History Effects in a Metastable Austenitic Stainless Steel). He has 15 years of experience in the field of mechanical behaviour of materials. During his career, Isakov has been working both in Finland and internationally in a wide range of topics covering virtually every material class. Isakov’s current research concentrates on the development of methodology for advanced fatigue and high strain rate loading analysis.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Heli on the video

Heli Koivuluoto is a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS (Dr.Tech., Leader of Icing Research Group, Engineering Materials Science) and leads the Icing Research Group at the Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, Materials Science and Environmental Engineering. Her research interests include icing research, surface engineering, coatings, thermal and cold spraying, materials, research and development, new solutions and supervision.

Koivuluoto is studying and developing novel surface engineering solutions and icephobic coatings for harsh conditions like icing environments. She has a strong background in surface engineering, e.g., thermal and cold spraying. Currently, she leads icing research and is the responsible person for Ice Laboratory at TAU. Also, high-performance coatings and surfaces for several industrial application fields as well as understanding of coating behaviour are part of the research and project works nationally and internationally. Sustainability, repairing, reliability, energy- and eco-efficiency are driving forces towards future surface engineering designs to fulfil the industrial requirements.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Matias on the video

Matias Koivurova a is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Theoretical Optics and Photonics (TOP) group at the Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences. His research interests include coherence of light, interferometry, and optical pulses. Koivurova has an extensive national and international collaboration network, with research partners in several countries. He is currently studying the interplay between coherence and orbital angular momentum, as well as the effect of exotic materials on the properties of light.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Antti on the video

Antti Kurvinen is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Faculty of Built Environment. His research is mostly quantitative and focuses on development of urban areas, including, but not limited to, the development of building stocks, housing price dynamics and socioeconomic segregation in residential neighborhoods.

Kurvinen has gained an extensive international experience by serving as a visiting scholar for over two years in both the US and Sweden.

At present, he is developing a comprehensive approach to model development of building stocks at the Tampere IAS.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Mira on the video

Mira Käkönen (PhD in Global Development Studies, M.Soc.Sc in Sociology) is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Tampere Institute for Advanced Studies. Over the past 15 years she has worked in various research projects on the politics of environment and development, with a particular focus on the political ecology of water and climate change in the Mekong Region, Southeast Asia. Käkönen’s research approach combines insights from political ecology, Foucauldian power analytics and science and technology studies. Her work has advanced analysis on the co-constitutive relations between resource making and power formations bridging political-ecological work on resource frontiers and studies of enclaved spaces of governing.
The topics of her publications include water infrastructure, hydrosocial ordering, changing riverine and deltaic environments, vulnerability, climate change mitigation and adaptation, carbon markets, and the politics of knowledge and expertise. Her current research focuses on the novel dynamics of infrastructural politics and examines how climate change and the increasingly unruly rivers both challenge and invoke new forms of hydraulic engineering.”


Personal profile page | Research activities | Reeja on the video

Reeja Maria Cherian is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Heart Group at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology. Her research focuses on modeling cardiovascular diseases and disorders in-vitro using human iPSC-derived heart cells and genome editing technologies including CRISPR/Cas9.

Cherian has generated many valuable tools including cardiac/hepatic fluorescent reporter lines and isogenic cell-lines with precise correction of a single nucleotide of mutated patient iPSC line. She is currently developing high-throughput platform for screening drug toxicity and efficacy in ischemic heart diseases, which is one of the leading causes of mortality in the world.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Noora on the video

Noora Nevala is a postdoctoral research fellow in Soile Nymark’s Biophysics of the Eye Research Group at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology. Her research interests include animal vision, retina, retinal pigment epithelium and visual ecophysiology.

Nevala’s current research focuses on the interaction of retina and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) in zebrafish eyes. She studies how different photoreceptor types interact with the RPE and how this is regulated in zebrafish. Her work utilizes immunohistochemistry and spinning disc confocal microscope with high-resolution objectives to achieve single cell imaging resolution of the RPE and retinal tissues in live zebrafish.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Mikko on the video

Mikko Peltola is a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS and a university lecturer in psychology, and he has a title of Docent in Developmental Psychology at Tampere University. He has experience in using psychophysiological, hormonal, observational, and eyetracking measures to study emotional development and parenting. His current research projects are focused on the development of emotion perception and empathy across the first years of life, and the emotional and hormonal changes across the transition to parenthood in mothers and fathers.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Tomi on the video

Tomi Ryynänen is a postdoctoral research fellow in biomedical engineering at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology. He has background in physics and also in industry. His main research interest is microelectrode arrays (MEAs) which biologists use for recording electrical activity from cells grown in a dish.

Microfabrication is Ryynänen’s most important expertise and in addition to applying it to MEA and other micro- and biosensor research, he is active in developing and maintaining faculty’s cleanroom microfabrication facilities at Hervanta Campus.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Annika on the video

Annika Svedholm-Häkkinen is a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS and a cognitive psychologist interested in thinking and reasoning, with a particular interest in thinking styles, individual differences, and in why we are sometimes so rational and sometimes so irrational. She has done research on cognitive and social cognitive topics such as argumentation, heuristics, fallacies, domain-general and domain-specific information processing, intuitive and analytic thinking, beliefs, empathy, social skills, intuitive physics abilities, non-social or physical cognition, cognitive gender differences, cognitive abilities, working memory, and occupational choices.

Methodologically, her research experience spans correlational studies, experimental research designs, and behavioral methodology such as reaction time measurements, pupillometry, and mouse tracking. Her current research focuses on how laypeople understand and think about informal everyday arguments. She collaborates nationally with the Critical Research Consortium, which is funded by the Strategic Research Council (SRC), and which aims to develop methods to support critical reading in children and adolescents. Her international collaborations are with researchers in Sweden and the US.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Mikhail on the video

Mikhail Silaev, now a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS,  was a group leader with funding from Academy of Finland Research Fellow programme (success rate about 10%) in 2016-2021.  His research project “Spinkinetics in superconductors and topological superfluids” focused on the theory of nonequilibrium states controlled by the superconducting order parameter.

Nowadays he focuses on the interaction between quantum matter such as corelated electrons in metallic systems and the quantum fields, such as photons and magnons, because understanding such interaction is important for the rapidly developing quantum technologies.

The promising platforms where he studies such interactions consist of superconductors coupled to (anti)ferromagnets and electromagnetic cavities. For example, based on the recent experiment results he pursues the goal and further funding opportunities to develop integrated on-chip quantum magnonics, which is quite promising for the future quantum technologies and spintronics logic devices.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Sari on the video

Sari Tojkander (PhD in cancer biology) is currently a senior research fellow at the Tampere Institute for Advanced Study and has a title of Docent in cell biology. She has had a longstanding interest in mechanosensitive actin-based structures, their role in epithelial integrity and invasion of cancer cells. Tojkander is currently studying in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology how biophysical changes in the tissue environment regulate epithelial integrity. She is also leading an Academy-funded project on mechanosignaling within the bilayered mammary epithelium and its role in cancer progression.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Johanna on the video

Johanna Virkki is a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS and Head of the Intelligent Clothing Research Group.

The research group’s work focuses on design, fabrication, as well as wireless evaluation and reliability improvement of clothing-integrated wireless systems in different application fields. The main goal is to use everyday clothing as an intelligent platform that creates functional capacity for people with special needs.


Personal profile page | Research activities | Matthew on the video

Matthew Wolf-Meyer, a senior research fellow at the Tampere IAS, is an anthropologist whose research focuses on the relationships between disability, personhood, neuroscience, and ideas about the brain. His previous work addressed the history of sleep disorders and their relationship to industrial capitalism and the role of communication disorders in the development of ideas about personhood in U.S. psychiatry and neuroscience.

While at Tampere, he will be working on a project about high contact sports, brain injury, and the role of racism in the history of diagnosing cognitive impairments. He is also in the early stages of a project on environmental influences on affect disorders and their mitigation through local, traditional practices in the context of climate change.





Personal profile page | Research activities |  Juha on the video

Juha Teperi is the director of Tampere Institute for Advanced Study. He was trained as a medical doctor and epidemiologist, and his research has mainly dealt with health and care systems, health policy and health technology assessment. This has brought him several national expert positions in national health and social care policy processes.

Since the late 1990s, Juha Teperi has worked in research leadership and management. In order to develop the new role in the academic community, he has attained formal training in leadership and management in (then) Helsinki School of Economics. Later on, Juha Teperi has also coached future leaders as the director of an EMBA training programme. Since joining the University of Tampere in 2014, he has been director of School of Health Sciences, dean at the Faculty of Social Sciences, and Tampere University Vice President for Research. In August 2021, he was appointed as the first director of the new Tampere IAS.


Personal profile page

Marjukka Virkajärvi is the coordinator of the Tampere Institute for Advanced Study. Her main responsibilities at the Tampere IAS are to provide administrative and organizational support to the director and the fellows, to organize and coordinate the IAS events and activities (workshops, lectures, conferences, academic symposia, visits by international researchers and scholars) and communications related to them, to prepare and facilitate administrative matters as well as to provide counselling to the fellows in matters concerning their fellowships in all their phases, including HR, research funds, travelling and communications. Her duties also include the Tampere IAS website updating and content provision. In addition, she provides support for the IAS recruitment process as well as advice to the applicants before, during and after the yearly Call for Applications.