Doctoral Student Position in Humanities or Social Sciences (Japanese and Platform Economy) University of Helsinki, Ruralia Institute Finland

The University of Helsinki is among the leading multidisciplinary research universities in the world. In addition to its 11 faculties, the University includes several independent institutes, some of which are jointly operated with other universities. More than 30,000 students are currently pursuing a degree at the University of Helsinki. The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry is an expert in the responsible use of renewable natural resources both in Finland and worldwide. The Faculty focuses on the agricultural and forest sciences, food and nutrition, microbiology, as well as on economics and management.


The Ruralia Institute of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry at the University of Helsinki offers high-quality research and innovation partnerships for rural development. The focus areas of the Institute are local development, sustainable food chains and new bioeconomy. The Institute performs extensive international, national and regional cooperation with about 50 experts (


Ruralia Institute’s Digitalisation and local resilience research group is inviting applications for a




for one year fixed-term position. The full-time position will start in May 2019, or later by agreement.


We seek dedicated and enthusiastic candidates with a Master’s degree in humanities or social sciences. Candidates who will receive their MSc degree in the near future are also eligible to apply. We are looking for people interested in digitalisation, platform economy and Japan. A solid knowledge in Japanese is prerequisite and previous experience in platform economy and municipalities’ operations is considered advantageous. Good written and oral skills in English and a team spirit are a necessity. Primary workplace is Ruralia Institute’s unit in Mikkeli with a remote work possibility.


A doctoral student will join the research project ”Principles of the digital platform economy and municipalities’ vitality policies” (DATE), which investigates how digital platforms could be utilised when the motives and practices of the public and private sector are combined. The project answers the questions such as what kind of characteristics explain successful and unsuccessful platform solutions when public and private sector needs are evaluated, and what kinds of benefits these platforms could deliver from the municipalities’ perspective.


Japanese “home region donation system” (Furusato noozei) is examined with the qualitative case study methods and research materials. Citizens can utilise this digital platform to contribute voluntary financial donations to a municipality or a prefecture outside one’s municipality of residence. Research tasks include:
− Conducting a literature review about digital platforms and furusato noozei
− Realising fieldwork in cooperation with the Hirosaki University (Japan) and
− Writing a project report


We offer an international, inspiring and supportive research environment. The salary will be based on level 2 (approximately 2300€/month) of the University salary system for teaching and research personnel. A six-month trial period will be applied.


Applications should include the following documents as a single pdf file:
1) A cover letter explaining the applicant’s motivation for this position and research interests (max 1 page)
2) Curriculum vitae showing the applicant's education, completed qualifications, work experience, possible list of publications and contact information of 2 persons for references
3) Copies of Master's and Bachelor's degree certificates and official transcripts of records, and their translations, if the originals are not in Finnish, Swedish or English.
4) A proof of proficiency in Finnish, Swedish or English, if the applicant is not a native speaker or educated in any of them.


To apply, please submit your application using the University of Helsinki electronic recruitment system by clicking on Apply for the position. Applicants who are employees of the University of Helsinki are requested to submit their application via the SAP HR portal.


The deadline for submitting applications is April 1, 2019, but review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.


For more information, please contact Research Director Torsti Hyyryläinen, +358 44 308 5322, torsti.hyyrylainen(at) or Senior Researcher Toni Ryynänen, +358 50 311 9398, toni.ryynanen(at) For technical support to use the recruitment system contact rekrytointi(at)


Due date
01.04.2019 23:59 EEST

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