Research group


The Environmental Policy Research Group (EPRG) led by Janne I. Hukkinen since 2008 consists of 2-4 post-doctoral researchers and 4-6 doctoral researchers. EPRG research assesses the socio-cognitive aspects of environmental policies and sustainable technologies. Several large research projects with funding from the EU, Academy of Finland, Strategic Research Council of Finland, Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation (Tekes) and a number of Finnish foundations have built up the group’s competence in environmental risk governance, knowledge integration and participation, environmental affordances, and sustainability indicators and scenarios.

The professorship in environmental policy is a joint position with the Faculty of Social Sciences, Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences, and Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry. The networked institutional position gives EPRG a unique opportunity to pursue interdisciplinary sustainability studies at the intersection of social and natural sciences. The group interacts actively with the Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS) at the University of Helsinki. EPRG is also affiliated with two doctoral programs of the University of Helsinki, the Doctoral Program in Interdisciplinary Sciences (DENVI) and the Doctoral Program in Social Research (theme Knowledge, Technology and Environment).

Current members of EPRG include:

Docent, Urban studies and environmental policy, University of Helsinki, since 2011
Lecturer, Department of Anthropology, Goldsmiths College, University of London, 1998-2002
Post-doctoral researcher, University of California, Berkeley, 1996-1998
– PhD (social anthropology), University of Cambridge, 1995
– MSc (spatial planning), University College, London, 2007
Research interests
– urban environmental activism
– environmental knowledge and expertise
– urban transformation and policy
– anthropology and the (built) environment
– Researcher, Royal Institute of British Architects, Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, Women’s Design Service (London), 2006-8
– Helsinki in transformation – ongoing independent project

University lecturer, University of Helsinki, since 2011
– PhD (environmental strategies and technology assessment), Aalto School of Science and Technology and HIST (Helsinki Institute of Science and Technology), 2011
– MA (philosophy), University of Helsinki, Faculty of Arts, 2000
Research interests
– Socio-cognitive studies of innovation
– Integration of environmental knowledge and expertise
– Socio-cognitive modeling of expertise in multiprofessional and multidisciplinary contexts
– Mixed methods research
– Creative Adaptation to Wicked Socio-Environmental Disruptions (WISE), 2018-2023)
– Innovative environmental regulation with expanded expertise: Integration of facts and values in expert deliberation over environmental monitoring in the Baltic Sea (RegEx), Maj and Tor Nessling Foundation, 2010-11

Doctoral candidate (environmental policy), University of Helsinki, since 2017
– PhD (Environmental Policy), University of Helsinki, 2020
– M.Soc.Sc. (Social and Public Policy, Environmental Policy), University of Helsinki, 2016
– B.Soc.Sc. (Social and Public Policy), University of Helsinki, 2014; University of Edinburgh (Sociology and Social Policy, 2011–2012), University of Melbourne (Philosophy of Science, 2014)
Research interests
– Socio-cognitive studies of sustainability
– Environmental behavior and socio–ecological systems
– Ecological and environmental psychology, embodied cognitive science
– Environmental philosophy
– Role of science and expertise in society, science–policy interfaces
– Creative Adaptation to Wicked Socio-Environmental Disruptions (WISE), 2018-2023)

Doctoral candidate (environmental policy), University of Helsinki, since 2015
– PhD (environmental policy), University of Helsinki, 2021
– MSc (social and public policy), University of Helsinki, 2015
– BSc (environmental policy), London School of Economics and Social Science, 2011
Research interests
– energy policy and transitions
– framing and discourse
– expertise, publics and knowledge in environmental policy
– carbon markets and development
-Decentralising Finland’s energy regime: The triggers and dynamics of transition (DEFEND), Academy of Finland, 2015-2018

Post-doctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, since 2018
– PhD (Development Studies), University of Helsinki, Faculty of Social Sciences, 2018
– MA (Sociology), University of Helsinki, Faculty of Social Sciences, 2010
Research interests
– Governance of marine-environmental uncertainties
– Interfaces between social and natural scientists
– Environmental conflicts
– Fishers’ environmental knowledge
– Governance of offshore oil exploration and extraction
– Ethnographic methodology
– Creative Adaptation to Wicked Socio-Environmental Disruptions (WISE), 2018-2023)
– New forms of environmental governance: Managing the risks and vulnerabilities related to climate change in Southern cities, 2011-14

Post-doctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, since 2013
Post-doctoral research associate, Princeton University, 2014-2015
Research Fellow, University of Edinburgh, Science, Technology and Innovation Studies, 2015-2017
Post-doctoral research associate, Durham University, Department of Anthropology, 2018-2019
Researcher, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies of Culture, 2019-2022
– PhD (sociology), University of Helsinki, 2013
– M.Soc.Sc., University of Helsinki, 2006
Research interests
– Sustainability transitions
– Energy and infrastructures
– Science and Technology Studies
– Risk and disaster
– Qualitative research methods
– Creative Adaptation to Wicked Socio-Environmental Disruptions (WISE), 2018-2023 (affiliated senior researcher)
– NTNU Energy Transition Initiative,  2019-2022
– National Centre for Energy Systems Integration (CESI), UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, 2018-2019
– Checking Assumptions and Promoting Responsibility in Smart Development Projects (CANDID), EU Horizon 2020, 2017
– Scotland in the European Energy Union, Scottish ClimateXChange, 2015-2016
– Managing Insecurity: Risk and Technologies of Welfare, Academy of Finland, 2008-2011

University lecturer, University of Helsinki, since 2011
Post-doctoral researcher, The Vincent and Elinor Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, Indiana University, Bloomington, 2014-2015
– PhD (environmental policy), University of Helsinki, 2011
– M.Soc.Sc., University of Helsinki, 2004
Research interests
– Network analysis
– Complexity theory
– Systems theory
– Policy and administration
– Environmental policy
– Risk governance of carbon dioxide capture and storage (RICCS), Academy of Finland, 2011-14
– Nanomaterials in REACH – evaluation of applicability of existing procedures for chemical safety assessment to nanomaterials (nanoREACH), Workpackage on Precautionary procedures for nanomaterial safety assessment, EC 6th Framework Programme SKEP ERA-NET project, 2010
– Urban Environmental Governance, Academy of Finland, 2005-2009

Doctoral candidate (environmental policy), University of Helsinki, since 2016
– MSc (international relations), University of Tampere, 2014
– BA (Russian language and culture), University of Tampere, 2010
Research interests
– energy policy: transition and security (Finland, Russia)
– science and technology studies
– assemblage geographies
– elites and decision-making processes
– urban mobility
– From Failand to Winland: future energy and food security in Finland, Academy of Finland, 2016-2019
– Energy and supply security: anticipating geopolitical and strategic transitions from a security policy perspective, Prime Minister’s Office, 2017-2018

Doctoral researcher since 2021.
Urban planning and policy consultant 2010 – 2021.
– Executive Education (Real Estate and Urban Development Management), IE Business School, 2016.
– M.Sc. (Architecture, Major in Urban Design), Aalto University, 2010.
Research interests
– Urban planning under long-term unsustainability
– Urban development dynamics (growth / degrowth)
– Urban mobility
– LONG-RISK (Academy of Finland), 2021 – 2023
– Active mobility policy in Finland (VN-TEAS), 2020 – 2021
– LUCIA, Smart Lighting the Baltic Cities (EU-Interreg, work-package on economic and institutional obstacles), 2019 – 2021
– WHEMBY, wooden housing energizing our backyards (ARA, The Housing Finance and Development Centre of Finland), 2019 – 2020.

Doctoral candidate (environmental policy), University of Helsinki, since 2019
– M.Soc.Sc. (social and cultural anthropology), University of Helsinki, 2019
Research interests
– Risk and uncertainty
– Comprehensive security and resilience
– Public health threats
– Simulation exercises and serious games
– Science and technology studies
– Creative Adaptation to Wicked Socio-Environmental Disruptions (WISE), 2018-2023
– a qualitative research project on communicable disease preparedness, National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), 2017

– Doctoral candidate (environmental governance), University of Helsinki, since 2017
– Junior researcher, Estonian University of Life Sciences, since 2020
– Visiting Fulbright Scholar, Cornell University, 2019-2020
– Advisor, Estonian Parliament Study Committee, 2018-2019
– Lecturer, Tallinn University, 2008-2016
– MA (sociology), Tallinn University, 2008
– MA (documentary film), Tallinn University 2012-2013 (unfinished)
Research interests
– temporary organizations and networks
– science-policy interfaces
– grassroots organizing
– LONGRISK (Academy of Finland), 2021 – 2023
– Innovation in Estonian Forest Policy (Estonian Research Council), 2021
– MyPlace (EC 7th Framework Programme), 2015-2017