FUURT presidential and vice presidential candidate profiles

 The Autumn Union Meeting in November will elect a President and two Vice Presidents for FUURT for the 2023–2024 term. On this page, you can learn more about the candidates for these posts.

Karjalainen Tero 9399

Presidential candidate: Tero Karjalainen

Qualification: PhD (medical physics)
Current employment: Director (2021–), Centre for Continuous Learning, University of Eastern Finland

Read Tero Karjalainen’s profile here.

Key goals

I want to work to ensure FUURT is known in future as an even more responsible, reliable and knowledgeable union representing everyone who works with science, research and higher education. We need to find better means of giving all our members the feeling they can genuinely be involved in what we do and the decisions we make, both locally and nationwide, should they wish to.

Sufficient resources for science, research and higher education must be secured predictably and over the long term. We should particularly lobby for this both ahead of the parliamentary elections and during the subsequent government negotiations.

I want to keep challenging the universities and the ministry that oversees them to commit to researchers and teachers with the same devotion with which researchers and teachers commit to research and education. Recognizing grant-receiving researchers as full members of the scientific community and committing to hired personnel over a longer term would be big steps forward.

Professional experience

I have worked at university faculties since 1999, primarily as a teacher or researcher (from assistant to research manager). This included two researcher exchanges in North America. In recent years, I have been part of faculty management, with responsibility for teaching.

Key positions of trust and advocacy positions

  • I have served in university positions of trust since 2001, including the faculty council (2001–2007), university board (2004–2017) and the University Collegiate Body (Chair 2018–2021, Vice Chair 2022–).
  • Chair of Kuopio University Researchers and Teachers 2002–2006
  • FUURT Vice President 2007–2008, 2019–2022
  • Eurodoc, Finnish delegate 2008–2009
  • Pallokissat Kuopio football club, Chair, 2009–2013

Link to candidate’s channels

UEF Connect

Twitter: @KarjalainenTero

LinkedIn: Tero Karjalainen

Instagram: karjalainentero



UEF columns

UEF continuous learning 

Arkhimedes (leader articles)

Sanni Tiitinen_vpj-vaalit 2022_valokuva

Vice presidential candidate: Sanni Tiitinen

Qualification: PhD (social psychology)
Current employment: Senior researcher (9/2021–), Institute of Rehabilitation, Jyväskylä University of Applied Sciences

Read Sanni Tiitinen’s profile here.

Key goals and actions

Within FUURT: Take tangible action to show what it means to be a union for all academics. Continue developing practices and rules to make participation and making a difference in the Union easier and more meaningful.

National policy: Continue lobbying for long-term, sufficient research funding. Speak about the importance of scientific knowledge as the basis for all decisions.

Academic positions and work culture: Lobby to ensure research and teaching workplaces genuinely set the priority of promoting well-being at work. Compile shared policies for key components of academics’ professional well-being as the basis for lobbying.

This includes long employment contracts, effective leadership practices and systems, and flexible allowances for work-life balance. Advocate for a humane and psychologically safe work culture.

Professional experience

  • Post-doctoral researcher, University of Tampere, 1/2017–8/2021
  • Post-doctoral researcher & grant-funded researcher, Aalto University, 9/2014–12/2016
  • Doctoral researcher, University of Tampere, 1/2010–3/2014
  • Research assistant, summer and hourly employment, 2006–2009

In my research work, I have studied the interaction in various professional encounters, such as at child health centres, development meetings, group management that supports work well-being, and workshop training. At present, I am studying subjects such as professional rehabilitation.

Key positions of trust and advocacy positions

  • FUURT: Vice President 2021–2022, deputy board member 2020, collective agreement research group member 2019–2020
  • Board of the Teachers’ Unemployment Fund, deputy member, 2021–
  • Tampere University Association of Researchers and Teachers TATTE: Chair 2020–2021, board member 2019 and deputy board member 2018
  • Tampere University, strike committee member, 2020
  • Tampere University occupational safety and health committee, staff member 2017–2021

Link to candidate’s channels

Twitter: @sanni_tiitinen

Facebook: Sanni Tiitinen

Links to blog posts and interview (in Finnish)

Academic chameleon finds peace,  5 October 2022

Is the academic world only for the thick-skinned? 9 June 2022

What can the universities learn from Netflix? 13 April 2022

Interview: Five questions 20 April 2021



Vice presidential candidate: Pauli Väisänen

Qualification: MA (doctoral defence in 2023)
Current employment: Doctoral researcher (2017–), Space Physics and Astronomy research unit, University of Oulu

Read Pauli Väisänen’s profile here.

Key goals

My goal is to bridge academics’ work with high-level decision making and develop genuine conditions for research and teaching.

FUURT should work towards reducing the level of precarious employment and project and application bureaucracy, as well as increasing the numbers of the necessary permanent teaching, research and specialist staff through improvements to core funding. The universities should make researcher careers significantly more attractive through steps such as improving remuneration to match that of other jobs requiring master’s degrees.

FUURT and its member associations should make getting involved with them even more attractive and low-threshold involvement should be developed. We have a vicious cycle in places: high workloads prevent getting involved, which in turn weakens the outcomes of advocacy (in issues like reducing workloads).

As research paid for by RDI and similar funding expands both within and outside the university, we must as a union take our rightful place as an advocate for research, teaching and academics.


Professional experience

  • Research assistant 2012–2016, Space Climate research group, Space Physics and Astronomy research unit, University of Oulu
  • Visiting researcher, 05–06/2019, University of Reading, United Kingdom

Key positions of trust and advocacy positions

I have actively engaged with organizational activities throughout my university career, and have actively served on several local, national and university positions of trust at the research group, department, faculty and university levels.


  • Board member, 2020–, deputy member 2019
  • Early career researchers’ committee 2019–, Chair 2021
  • Collective agreement research group 2022
  • Organizational activities working group 2022

University of Oulu Academics 

  • Chair 2020–, information officer 2018–2019

University of Oulu

  • HRS4R monitoring group member 2022
  • Responsible evaluation working group member 2020
  • RAE2020 preparatory group member
  • Research council member 2017–2019
  • Research school management team member and doctoral researcher committee chair 2018
  • University board member 2016–2017
  • Educational council member 2014–2015

Faculty of science

  • Faculty board member 2014–2015, 2018–2021

Link to candidate’s channels

Twitter: PauliVaisanen

Facebook: ForTex

Reseacher profile: Pauli Väsänen




FUURT President and Vice President election panel Thu 3/11/2022 recording

In the election panel, we heard the candidates’views about issues such as the future of FUURT and advocacy.