I’m a sociologist specializing in circular economy, service design and consumer behavior. Starting from August 2021, I work as a Senior researcher in circular economy and consumer citizenship at Laurea University of Applied Sciences in Helsinki, Finland. Prior to that, in 2016-2021, I worked first as an Assistant professor and then as an Associate professor in consumption studies and intercultural encounters at Aalborg University in Denmark. In addition, since 2017, I hold a title of docent in sociology from the University of Helsinki in Finland. Before that, I worked at the University of Helsinki at a prestigious position of the Academy of Finland fellow. Also, I was employed as a docent at the National Research University — Higher School of Economics in St. Petersburg, Russia. Working as a visiting researcher at universities across the world — The New School — Parsons School of Design (USA), Aalto University (Finland), University of Michigan at Ann Arbor (USA), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (USA), Central European University (Hungary) and University of Genova (Italy) – has broadened my international experience.
I was trained as a sociologist, but have worked in interdisciplinary teams as well as with industry and government. In addition to social scientists, I collaborated with fashion and textile designers, UX designers and service designers. Passionate about fashion and textile, I have closely followed these industries for many years. I’m interested in consumer insights, consumer behavior, nudging consumers to be more sustainable, consumer behavior towards textile waste, sustainable business models and entrepreneurship. I’m also interested in a broader set of issues related to social and cultural sustainability in creative industries, such as diversity, equity and inclusion, social justice and human rights.
I’m curious about methods of social research. I use interpretive methodologies and ethnographic methods that gain deeper understanding of why things happen the way they do. I’ve worked with visual ethnography, research-based film-making and social network analysis in addition to other methods. I’m also curious about methods associated with service design. While working with business, governmental and non-governmental organizations, I rely on the user-centered and open innovation concept of the Living Lab that allows me to be creative and utilize a multiplicity of methods from both social sciences and service design.
I’ve been the principle investigator on a number of large- and small-scale academic projects, supported by various funding bodies, including the Academy of Finland, Finnish Cultural Foundation, Fulbright and Carnegie Corporation of New York, among others. At the moment, I’m working with large-scale European projects that engage research institutions, industry and policy actors.
Photo (c): Be in open 2018