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Maija Hirvonen

Associate Professor (tenure track), German Language, Culture and Translation

About me

I am Associate Professor (tenure track) in German language, culture and translation at the Languages Unit of the Faculty of Information Technology and Communication Sciences of Tampere University. I lead BA, MA and PhD studies in German linguistics and translation. I chair the steering board for Plural (the multidisciplinary research centre for languages and cultures). I co-lead Tampere Accessibility Unit and the Multimodality in Translation and Interpreting research group.

In research, I specialise in 

  • accessibility (esp. audio-description)
  • multimodal and intermodal translation and interpreting
  • blind-sighted interaction
  • teamwork
  • distributed/interactive intelligence and the interface of cognition and interaction
  • human-centered machine learning (esp. machine perception, automatic video description, audio captioning)

I teach advanced- or intermediate-level courses in German language, translation studies, and accessibility. I supervise MA and PhD theses.


Head of German studies in the Languages BA and MA programs and in the MA program of multilingual communication

Chair of Plural (Multidisciplinary Research Centre for Languages and Cultures)

Co-leader of TACCU (Tampere Accessibility Unit)

Co-leader of MULTI (Multimodality in Translation and Interpreting research group)

Founding member of NIICTE (international Network of Inclusion and Inclusive Communication in Tertiary Education)

Research topics

accessibility (esp. audio-description), multimodal and intermodal translation and interpreting, blind-sighted interaction, teamwork, distributed cognition and the interface of cognition and interaction, human-centered machine learning (esp. machine perception, automatic video description, audio captioning)

Research fields

linguistics, translation studies

Selected publications

Korhonen, Annamari & Hirvonen, Maija (2021): Joint creative process in translation: Socially distributed cognition in two production contexts. Special issue “Developments in Cognitive Translation and Interpreting Studies”, ed. by Kairong Xiao & Sandra Halverson, Cognitive Linguistic Studies 8 (2), 251–276.

Koponen, Maarit, Tuominen, Tiina, Hirvonen, Maija, Vitikainen, Kaisa & Tiittula, Liisa (2021): User perspectives on developing technology-assisted access services in public broadcasting. Bridge: Trends and Traditions in Translation and Interpreting Studies 1 (2), 47–67.

Hirvonen, Maija & Wiklund, Mari (2021): From image to text to speech – The effects of speech prosody on information sequencing in audio description. Text & Talk 41 (3), 309–334.

Hirvonen, Maija (2020): Sprache(n) als Zugang. Die Anwendung von Sprache als Mittel der Zugänglichkeit im digitalen Zeitalter. Neuphilologische Mitteilungen.

Hirvonen, Maija & Kinnunen, Tuija (2020): Accessibility and linguistics human rights. In: Routledge Handbook of Translation and Ethics (ed. by Kaisa Koskinen & Nike K. Pokorn).

Hirvonen, Maija & Kinnunen, Tuija (2020): Saavutettava viestintä: yhdenvertaista yhteiskuntaa edistämässä. Helsinki: Gaudeamus.

See publications and other research activities at the university's research portal.

Latest publications