Courses in English

Course programme in English;  Autumn 2024

Gender perspectives on Finland (5 ECTS);
Teacher Ph D Eira Juntti

This course looks at Finland through a gender lens. By analyzing Finnish history, culture, and society from a gender perspective we can better understand the development of Finland first to a nation state and then to a Nordic welfare state in the 20th century. Today, Finland is known as one of the leaders in gender equality, however, there are a number of paradoxes in the Finnish situation, namely there are trends which seem not to fit this image (e.g. high degree of gender segregation in the labor market, gender wage gap, high degree of violent crimes compared to other European countries). Analyzing the history and current situation through a gender lens can help put those trends in perspective and provide a more nuanced analysis of social and cultural change, as well as show how gender is an important aspect of almost every facet of society.

The course is primarily meant for second- or third-year Bachelor’s (Candidate’s) students, or students in their early years of Master’s programs in the social sciences or humanities (e.g. history, sociology, anthropology, political science, cultural studies). It is desirable to have completed an introductory gender studies course or other similar introductory courses in the social sciences or history.

Students will post short reflections on the course material in Moodle every week and discuss the topics in small groups online. In the end of the course, students will write a personal learning diary based on their weekly reflections.

COURSE PROGRAMME (Overview)  1. Gender & History I: Women and Nation Building  2. Gender & History II: Men and Masculinities  3. (Gendered) Aspects of Finnish Culture  4. Colonial History, (Post)Colonial Present?  5. Gender & Politics: National and International Relations  6. Gender & Education  7. Gender & Work & Family   8. Gendered & Racialized Politics

Apply here: 26.8 – 13.9.2024

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23.9 – 15.11.2024
Feminist politics and ecologies of the art world (5 ECTS)

Teacher(s): Anastasia Khodyreva et al

Online-lectures on Wednesdays 12:00 – 14:00

Course description
The course centres on the ecology of the contemporary art world. It explores feminist politics that crystallises in this ecology understood as a politically charged field. It explores feminist politics and practices that flash out there as situated theoretical propositions. Specifically, the course discusses practices and processes constitutive of the art world: facilitating, hosting, publishing, editing, curating, designing, managing an artist-led space, and collaborating.

The course discusses how theoretical feminisms inform critical social practices and overall ecologies of the art world in specific geopolitical contexts and how the art world practically presses back upon feminist theory. The course explicitly challenges the idea of an ‘ivory tower’ and detachment of feminist theory from other socially embedded critical practices; it pays close attention to existing synergies and discords between feminist theory and practices and the contemporary art world. What kind of politically, conceptually, and ethically enriching and challenging relations between feminism, feminist theory and the contemporary art world surface now? How are feminist theories practised in the milieu of contemporary art? How do feminist practices in contemporary arts nuance and challenge theoretical propositions? What type of knowledge and critique may emerge between the two?

The course engages with a range of feminist accounts that include the work of Kim Donaldson and Katve-Kaisa Kontturi, Taru Elfving, Alison Place, Ellen Lupton, Farah Kafei, Jennifer Tobias, Josh A. Halstead, Kaleena Sales, Leslie Xia, and Valentina Vergara, Moritz Grünke, Pascale Obolo, Michalis Pichler, Parfait Tabapsi, Eileen Cadman, Gail Chester, Agnes Pivot, Alex Martinis Roe, Trinh T. Minh-ha and María C. Lugones, among others.

Among the case studies are artist-led galleries, residencies, publishing, curatorial and other collaborative projects operating in Finland and Northern Europe. Their founders, curators, managers, editors and publishers are guest lecturers on the course.

No prior knowledge is required, but background in gender studies, cultural studies, feminist theory, art history, curatorial studies, or fine arts is a benefit. The course will be equally beneficial both for degree students and participants from outside of academia working in the field of contemporary arts.

Learning outcomes:
By the completion of the course, participants will be able
– to analyse artistic practices and processes that make the artworld through the lens of feminist theory and analyse them as critical social practices that challenge and nuanced feminist theory;
– to understand the role of a body, its locatedness and situatedness in feminist theory and practices in the context of contemporary arts;
– to synthesize theoretical discussions and course materials with one’s personal artistic, research and professional interests.

Teaching methods:
Lectures, discussions, artist/curator talks, practical exercises, and an optional gallery visit.

Study materials/course literature:
Reading and audio-visual material will be available by the beginning of the course.

Forms of examination:
A written assignment. Depending on participants’ needs, alternative forms of an assignment are possible. Please, contract the course instructor for more details.

Basis of assessment:
Attendance, a written assignment

Apply here 26.8 – 13.9.2024

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Women in Public Administration 7.10-29.11.2024;  (5 ECTS)
Teacher Valeriya Utkina

Today, in many countries around the world, there is a feminization of public administration, i.e., significant representation of women in public authorities at all levels of government: municipal, regional, and federal. At the same time, according to statistics, the number of women at the decision-making level remains low, and the ”gender pyramid” persists in many countries. We will discuss the reasons for the segregation of women in government, as well as such phenomena as the ”glass ceiling”, ”glass walls”, etc.; find out why ministries are divided into ”men’s” and ”women’s”; and learn what measures make it possible to maintain gender balance in governance. The course will briefly cover the history of women’s political representation and focus on women’s participation in the modern political process and gender aspects of international relations.

The course is primarily meant for students in their early years of master’s programs in the social sciences or humanities.

Ways of working: Online lectures, online masterclasses, and workshops.


  1. Batista-Medina J. A. Public Administrations as Gendered Organizations. The Case of Spanish Municipalities //Revista Española de Investigaciones Sociológicas. – 2015. – Т. 149. – С. 3-30.
  2. Bearfield D. A. Equity at the intersection: Public administration and the study of gender //Public Administration Review. – 2009. – Т. 69. – №.3. – С. 383-386.
  3. Hsieh C., Winslow E. Gender representation in the federal workforce: A comparison among groups //Review of Public Personnel “



  1. Achieving gender-balanced participation in political and public decision-making
  2. Women in Civil Service
  3. Women and Political Representation
  4. Gender Mainstreaming
  5. Gender citizenship
  6. Good practices of women’s empowerment
  7. Gender-based violenceApply here 9.9 – 27.9.2024

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Managing Diversity and Inclusion, (6 ECTS)
Teacher Saija Katila, co-operation with Aalto University


Timetable for lectures: to be announced soon

(Course can be done either in Espoo Campus or online, most of the material is provided via net as well)

The course provides an overview of managing diversity (DM) and inclusion in organizations and labour market in general. The course discusses how DM and inclusion can be promoted and what kind of tools and practices organizations have in their use. The course critically assesses the benefits and pitfalls of diversity management and inclusion efforts of organizations by interrogating how cultural assumptions concerning gender, race, ethnicity, sexuality etc., are reproduced in organizations in the level of interaction, practices and culture. Throughout the course possibilities for change are explored by considering forms of interventions for changing exclusionary practices in organizations.

Learning objectives:
The student
• can recognize and argue for the importance of gender, diversity, and inclusion at work.
•understands the difference between conceptualizing ‘gender/diversity as a category’ and ‘gender/diversity as doing’ (= the way we assign and assume gendered/racialized/classed meanings in our activities).
•  understands the difference between diversity management and inclusion in their current use and knows the benefits and pitfalls of diversity management and the basic tools used in DM practices.
• can analyze and critically evaluate how gender and diversity are done at the level of interaction, organizational practices, and society and how such doings can be read from visual and textual media. •   can reflect how one does gender and difference and how that may contribute to inequality and reproduction of privilege. •   can identify and develop interventions and practices that promote equality, diversity, and inclusion.

Apply here xx-xx (link)

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Study on Your own,
any time!

Introduction to Gender Studies; independent study!

Studymaterial by Eira Juntti

A general introduction to gender studies, focusing on the social sciences.   By the end of the course, students will be familiar with the basic concepts used in gender studies, know the main theories on gender in the social sciences, and understand how gender is part of different social structures.  This course is designed to be done independently by students.  .

Material: Hilary M. Lips, Gender: The Basics, 2nd ed., Routledge 2019.  As e-book in university libraries.  Also other texts and videos.

Access the course at:

Click on Log In
University of Helsinki Students: use your University of Helsinki account.
All others: Access Moodle by using the HAKA Account. Click on it. On the next page, choose your university from the drop-down list and proceed.
Find the course: Introduction to Gender Studies HILMA Independent Study
Enroll yourself to the course by using the Enrolment Key: intro2023

Welcome to join!


Feminist research methods/ feminist knowing – Independent Study.

Teachers Joa Hiitola,  Anna Rönkä & Piia Lavila & many others!
Co-operation with University of Oulu

Link to moodle:
and course enrollment key ’Femknow23’. All instructions will be found there! Teacher Piia Lavila will read your essays.

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