Over the last two years, Tatte’s working group on international members has conducted a survey and interviews seeking to better understand the experiences of international researchers, teachers, and staff at Tampere universities. This research has been done in collaboration with the Tampere University chapter of the Finnish Union of University Professors.
This research has resulted in two reports based on the survey and interviews, respectively. The survey report, first released last year, is available here in Finnish and English. The report on the interviews is also newly available here in Finnish and English.
Taken together, the research reveals a complex picture of the diverse experiences of international researchers, teachers, and staff at Tampere universities, and it discusses a broad range of issues, from complicated questions around language practices to the practicalities of banking to problems of harassment and discrimination. The reports emphasize the diverse range of experiences imperfectly gathered under the concept of ‘international’, while also noting that many of the problems faced by international members are bound up with broader structural issues in the university, such as the prevalence of fixed-term contracts.
Above all, the results foreground the need to understand and treat international members of Tampere universities as precisely that, as full members of the university community. This is necessarily the work of the entire university community—not just international members themselves. It is hoped that this research can productively inform policies and practices of the universities, as well as of trade unions active in the university sector.