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Professor Jari Stenvall is Professor of the Year 2022

Published on 14.1.2022
Tampere University
Jari Stenvall
The Finnish Union of University Professors has chosen professor Jari Stenvall, a professor of administrative science at Tampere University, as the Professor of the Year 2022. “Stenvall’s activities as a professor are an example of the social significance of universities. Interdisciplinary research activity, which advances the development of scientific research and the solving of social problems from a new perspective, is very important to him,” says Jukka Heikkilä, Chair of the Finnish Union of University Professors.

“Professor Jari Stenvall is a passionate researcher, a pragmatic and realistic developer, and a respected network player. He has put his shoulder to the wheel to further the study of public sector management as a field of science and to develop Finnish society and its administrative structures,” Heikkilä continues.

The nomination was announced at the Union’s Communicatio Academica event in Turku on Thursday 13 January.

Good public management is key to the success of major changes

In the Nordic welfare states, good public management is in a key position when it comes to digitalisation, urbanisation, and successful large-scale systemic changes (for example, reforming the social, healthcare and emergency services).

Stenvall’s research topics include the management of change, the reformation and assessment of public administration, regional development, public services, and the utilisation of technology in administration. Stenvall, together with his research group, has studied public administration in countries, such as Great Britain, Spain, and the United States, as well as participated in other international academic groups with funding granted by the Academy of Finland among others.

Jari Stenvall (b. 1965) has been a professor at Tampere University since 2013. Presently, Stenvall also serves as a visiting professor at the University of Glasgow and associate professor at the University of Oxford. Among other things, Stenvall has worked at the University of Lapland as a professor of public administration from 2002 to 2013, and at Tampere University as a research professor from 2009 to 2010, and a research director from 2000 to 2001.

Stenvall has authored circa 160 academic publications.

Stenvall evaluates Finland’s COVID-19 administration and management model

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on Stenvall’s research and assessment activities. He has participated in Finland’s Safety Investigation Authority’s independent investigation group appointed by the Government to do an expert evaluation of the effects of Finland’s COVID-19 measures during the first wave of the pandemic, and to estimate future preparedness. Presently, professor Stenvall represents Tampere University in overseeing the evaluation of Finland’s COVID-19 measures from the administrative and management perspectives.

Jari Stenvall is known for both being an active developer of the work community and an academic director. The research and development of the preconditions for academic work have been very important to him. Stenvall has served in numerous positions in the university community and higher education policy development projects, such as serving as the director of the initiative to evaluate the societal impact of universities. Furthermore, he has participated in, among other things, the evaluation of the research career model.

During his career, Stenvall has written several textbooks for a wider audience and taught in all public management fields especially in Finland but also internationally. Professor Stenvall has supervised hundreds of master’s theses and been the supervisor of nearly 50 doctoral theses.

The awarded amount of the Professor of the Year prize is €20,000.

The previous Professor of the Year from Tampere University is Pertti Alasuutari who received the prize in 2014.

Photograph: Touko Hujanen