Matilda Hellman
Dr.Soc.Sci, Docent
Research Director
Faculty of Social Sciences
Tel. +358 40 7600713
Matilda Hellman is head of the CEACG group. She is an internationally recognized sociologist of lifestyles and addictions. Hellman has published extensively and successfully managed and coordinated several international studies. Hellman holds many academic positions of trust and has developed qualitative and quantitative tools for cross-country comparisons. In 2018-2019 she was a guest scholar at the Center for Population and Developments Studies at Harvard University.

Anna Alanko, Dr.Soc.Sci 
Deputy Director, Coordinator
Faculty of Social Sciences
Alanko is the deputy director and coordinator of CEACG. Her research interests include concepts and policies related to mental health, addictions, gambling and the welfare system. Alanko defended her doctoral thesis ‘Improving Mental Health Care. Finnish mental health policy rationale in the era of dehospitalisation’ in September 2017. Before beginning her PhD research, she coordinated Nordic and international research projects related to health policy and the welfare state.

Sébastien Berret, M.Soc.Sci
Faculty of Social Sciences
Sébastien Berret is conducting a PhD in sociology at the University of Helsinki. His thesis investigates how the gambling surplus efficiency of gambling suppliers is produced, how it depends on their cost structure and the institutional context, and how these might affect gambling-related harm. Berret specializes in comparing European lotteries. He is also involved in the Political Economy of Gambling project since 2018.

Michael Egerer, Dr.Soc.Sci
Deputy Director, University Researcher
Faculty of Social Sciences
Tel. +358 2941 23919
Michael Egerer is a University Researcher at CEACG. His research interests address gambling, gambling regulations and the concept of addiction. The research projects he is currently working on concern the implications of neuroscientific addiction research, the opening of the new casino in Tampere, and the future of the Finnish gambling regulation. While mastering a wide selection of methodologies, Egerer is an expert in the focus group technique. He is developing the application of sociological systems theory in the field of addiction and gambling research and together with two colleagues, he has recently published an article on this matter. Egerer is co-author and co-editor of two international books on gambling policy and regulation. He is the vice-chair of the Finnish Association for Alcohol, Drug and Gambling Research.

Paula Jääskeläinen, M.Soc.Sci
Faculty of Social Sciences
Paula Jääskeläinen is a doctoral student. Her study focuses on the upcoming Tampere casino and its social, economic and political implications. In her thesis she combines perspectives from gambling studies and urban sociology.

Veera Kankainen, M.Soc.Sci
Faculty of Social Sciences
Kankainen is a doctoral student and her thesis inquires into the role of civil society organizations as the beneficiaries of the Finnish gambling policy system. Besides civil society and gambling policies, Kankainen’s research interests also include health and welfare policies, governance and power relations, the voluntary sector, and the financing and provision of social services.

Anu Katainen, Dr.Soc.Sci,
University Lecturer
Faculty of Social Sciences
Tel. +358 2941 23891
Katainen’s work covers public health and consumption in the intersection of social inequalities, substance use and health promotion efforts. Her doctoral dissertation (2011) concerned the social stratification of smoking behavior, and she has since studied distinctions related to culture and class in adolescents’ meaning-making of alcohol. Katainen is a university lecturer in social policy.

Tom Kettunen, M.Soc.Sci
Editor, Nordic Studies on Alcohol and Drugs
Tom Kettunen is the editor of Nordic Studies on Alcohol and Drugs since 2012. His background is in philosophy and his academic interests include science publishing, publishing ethics, lifestyles and addictions. Kettunen is a member of the editorial board of Nordic Welfare Research.

Petteri Koivula, M.Soc.Sci
Faculty of Social Sciences
Koivula is a doctoral student and his thesis inquires into how the agency of people with ‘addiction’ is constructed, performed and enacted through epistemic project(s) of brain-based addiction. His research interests include ontological politics of ‘addiction’, drug use, drug policy, science and technology studies, new materialism and philosophy of science.

Mikaela Lindeman, M.Soc.Sci
Researcher, Project Planning Officer
Finnish Foundation for Alcohol Studies
Lindeman, with a background in political science, has been working in the field of addiction research for over a decade. She has been involved in several international projects on alcohol policy, and has worked for National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) and Nordic Welfare Centre as well as a consultant for Alko and WHO.
Lindeman joined CEACG in 2017 to work with the Online Marketing of Alcohol-project (OMA), which looked at online marketing and advertising of alcohol in Sweden and in Finland in the light of recent policy changes. Currently, she is involved in the Online Marketing of Gambling-project (OMG), comparing marketing of gambling services and commercial communications on social media sites in Sweden and Finland.

Virve Marionneau, Dr.Soc.Sci
Faculty of Social Sciences
Virve Marionneau is a postdoctoral researcher focusing mainly on gambling policies, institutional perspectives, and the political economy of gambling. She has several projects focusing mainly on international comparisons, such as the Assessment tool for gambling regulation project, and two projects on the impacts of COVID-19 on gambling. 

Janne Nikkinen, Dr. theol., Title of Docent
University Researcher
Faculty of Social Sciences
Janne Nikkinen has over 50 academic publications, including several jointly authored and edited books about gambling. His research interest related to gambling spans a range of issues, from regulatory and policy affairs to the prevention of gambling harm. He is also the Chair of the Professional Ethics Committee of the Association of Finnish Pharmacies (Apteekkariliitto) and Vice-Chair of the Ethics Committee III and Human Protection Administrator at the Helsinki University Hospital (HUS).

Yaira Obstbaum, Dr.Soc.Sci
Postdoctoral Researcher
Institute for criminology and legal policy
Obstbaum’s research interests span law and society, criminology and social aspects of alcohol and drugs and gambling. She is currently working with barriers to and access to justice among Finnish citizens using survey methods. Her doctoral thesis dealt with developments in prisoners’ substance abuse problems, new individualized approaches to rehabilitation in Finnish prisons, and overall changes in the institutional division of labor in handling of substance abuse related harm. She has previously worked as a project coordinator for alcohol and drug projects at the Nordic Welfare Centre (NVC).

Arto Ruuska, M.Soc.Sci
Faculty of Social Sciences
Ruuska’s research interests lie in the fields of intellectual history, history of medicine, and social theory. He has published and lectured on topics ranging from Scottish Enlightenment social theory to history of ideas on addiction, and the sociological aspects of criminal economy.

Janne Stoneham
Research Assistant
Faculty of Social Sciences
Janne Stoneham is working as a research assistant within the A-BRAIN research project. He is currently finishing his Master’s degree studies in Contemporary Societies at the University of Helsinki. His primary research interests lie in consumption, health, sustainability and identity.

Pekka Sulkunen
Professor Emeritus
Faculty of Social Sciences
Tel. +358 504482050
Professor emeritus Pekka Sulkunen founded the CEACG group in 2011. He has authored several books on social theory, cultural studies, addictions and preventive social policy, including The Saturated Society: Regulating Risk and Lifestyle in Consumer Culture (1st edition Sage 2009; 2nd edition Unigrafia 2016). President of the European Sociological Association 2011-2013.

Mika Tsupari, M.Soc.Sci
Doctoral Researcher
Faculty of Social Sciences
Tsupari is a doctoral student in the field of sociology. His thesis focuses on psychedelics in Finland from the perspective of set and setting, motives, meanings, the culture linked to psychedelics and well-being of the users. His research interests include addiction research and drug culture, interactions between groups and individuals, and well-being in general.

Josefin Westermarck, M. Soc.Sci 
Technical Assistant
Doctoral researcher
Faculty of Social Sciences
Westermarck is a sociologist that works as a technical assistant in project SILE focusing on Finnish alcohol,- drug- and mental health legislation. She has previously worked as a research assistant using civic imagination and justification analysis tools. Her Master’s degree studied drug addiction recovery and peer support in online environments. She is planning to write a PhD on alcohol marketing on social media from an alcohol culture perspective. Her interests also lie in online ethnography, social media studies and social psychology.


Franca Beccaria, Dr.Alcohology
Research Director
Eclectica Institute for Research and Training (Turin, Italy)
Franca Beccaria is the head of the research unit at Eclectica Institute for research and training that she founded in 1998 in Turin, Italy. She is an internationally well-known sociologist, working on drinking culture, drug consumption, addiction, lifestyles and policies. She has participated in many cross-countries studies and led several research projects with about 150 publications. She has the Italian qualification of Associate professor in sociology and the position of docent at the University of Helsinki. She is the vice director of the European Masters in Alcohol and Drug Studies (EMDAS) at the University of Piemonte Orientale (IT).

Sara Rolando, Dr.Soc.Sci
Eclectica Institute for Research and Training (Turin, Italy)
Sara Rolando has been working as a social researcher at Eclectica since 2007. After several years of collaboration with Finnish research teams, she achieved her doctoral degree at the University of Helsinki, Finland, with a thesis comparing youth drinking cultures in different geographies. An expert in qualitative, web-based, and comparative methods, her main research interests are alcohol, gambling, drugs, and other addictive behaviours, which she has been investigating from different perspectives including cultures, careers, prevention, policies. She is currently working in PolEG 2018-2022 project on gambling revenues in seven European countries.

Sanna Rönkä, Dr.Soc.Sci
Senior Specialist
Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL)
Rönkä’s current research projects focus on social aspects of drug use. She employs both quantitative and qualitative methods in her work, and operates in the fields of sociology, social epidemiology and criminology. Her PhD thesis examined polydrug-related deaths in the context of pharmaceuticalisation. Currently she is also responsible for drug monitoring at the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare (THL). Rönkä has a broad experience in coordinating several expert networks. Her research interests concern also use and harm of other substances and addictive behaviours, and specifically their societal implications.

Riikka Perälä, Dr.Soc.Sci
Coordinator of Development and Advocacy Work
Finnish Association for Substance Abuse Prevention Ombudsman Activity
Riikka Perälä’s research interests cover the transformations in the government-civil society relationship in Finland in the beginning of 21st century and the position of the most marginalized citizen groups in these transformations. Her latest publications concerned opioid substitution treatment and ‘housing first’ initiatives in the field of mental health and substance abuse treatment. In her current position, she follows actively the development of national policies and legislation related to substance abuse treatment.

Johan Svensson, Dr.Soc.Sci.
The Swedish Council for Information on Alcohol and Other Drugs (CAN), and Department of Public Health Sciences, Stockholm University
Johan Svensson has a background in Public Health Science. His research has come to focus especially on two areas; trends in youth alcohol consumption and gambling among youth. Since 2017 he investigates online marketing of alcohol and gambling. Svensson is the principal executive investigator for the Swedish part of the Online Marketing of Alcohol (OMA) project. The project looks at online marketing and advertising of alcohol in Sweden and in Finland in the light of recent policy changes, asking whether regulation of online advertising is possible and relevant from a public health perspective.