ExpREES Decision making

The decision-making body of the Russian and Eastern European Studies (REES) network responsible for ExpREESs studies is the executive board which meets three to four times per year. All member universities of the network are represented in the executive board.

Administration of ExpREES is managed by the head of ExpREES and network coordinator.

Since its foundation in 1998, ExpREES (former Master's School in Russian and Eastern European Studies) has had more than 700 students. Our annual intake is approximately 40 students. 

Executive board

REES network/ExpREES has an executive board which represents the 12 universities of the network + students’ representative.

Hanken School of Economics
Professor Mats Ehrnrooth firstname.lastname@hanken.fi
Professor Benjamin Maury firstname.lastname@hanken.fi

Helsinki School of Economics and Business Administration
Postdoctoral reseacher Daria Kautto firstname.lastname@aalto.fi
Academy Reseach Fellow Päivi Karhunen firstname.lastname@aalto.fi

University of Helsinki
Research coordinator Meri Kulmala firstname.lastname@helsinki.fi
Professor Tomi Huttunen firstname.lastname@helsinki.fi

University of Eastern Finland
Professor Juha Hämäläinen juha.e.hamalainen at uef.fi
Professor Jarmo Kortelainen firstname.lastname@uef.fi

University of Jyväskylä
Professor Mika Lähteenmäki firstname.lastname@juy.fi
Professor Markku Lonkila firstname.lastname@juy.fi

University of Lapland
PhD candidate Susanna Pirnes firstname.lastname@ulapland.fi
PhD candidate Olga Pushina opushina at ulapland.fi

Lappeenranta University of Technology
Professor Juha Väätänen firstname.lastname@lut.fi
Postdoctoral reseacher Daria Podmetina firstname.lastname@lut.fi

University of Oulu
Research Professor Kari Strand firstname.lastname@oulu.fi
Professor Riitta Keiski firstname.lastname@oulu.fi

Tampere University
Professor Sanna Turoma firstname.lastname@tuni.fi
Assistant professor Nelli Piattoeva firstname.lastname@tuni.fi

University of Turku
University lecturer Tamara Budanova firstname.lastname@utu.fi
Postdoctoral researcher Pia Koivunen firstname.lastname@utu.fi

University of Vaasa
Professor Jorma Larimo firstname.lastname@uva.fi
Lecturer Mika Kärkkäinen firstname.lastname@uva.fi

Åbo Akademi
Professor Mikko Lagerspetz firstname.lastname@abo.fi
Assistant Professor Martina Björklund firstname.lastname@abo.fi

Student representatives:

Anton Pehkonen firstname.lastname@aalto.fi
Aino Pöyhönen firstname.lastname@tuni.fi

Aleksanteri Institute

Director of the Institute Markku Kangaspuro, Chair of the Executive Board

University Lecturer in Russian and Eurasian Studies, Head of ExpREES, Sirke Mäkinen, Referendary of the Executive Board

ExpREES Coordinator Hanna Peltonen, Secretary of the Executive Board

It is important that the ExpREES programme is visible at all its member universities, For this reason in 2007 we invited students to take part in the marketing and developing of the ExpREES. Student contact persons make up an important part of ExpREES activities. Student contact persons

  • act as a contact person to prospective and current ExpREES students at their home university.
  • help with the marketing efforts of the ExpREES programme especially during the application period in the spring semester (February-early April) and with the gathering of course information from their home university for the ExpREES study guide (April).
  • participate in developing ExpREES studies by giving feedback from student’s point of view. Workshops to develop ExpREES are organized once or twice a year with the ExpREES staff. 

Student Contact Persons 2021-2022:

  • Philip Cronstedt, Anton Pehkonen ja Timofei Telov / Aalto-university
  • Henry Partinen, Alexander Malinen, Kukka Louhimies ja Elisa Minkkinen / University of Helsinki
  • Martti Rajamäki, Christina Keronen / University of Jyväskylä
  • Inka Piisilä / University of Lapland
  • Aleksi Nissilä / University of Oulu
  • Maria Roivas, Anna Kananen, Elisa Airasvirta, Alisa Virtanen ja Senja Matilainen / Tampere University
  • Bojan Lavrnja / University of Turku
  • Katariina Härmälä / Åbo Akademi

Student contact person is a position of trust. It offers a lot of benefits and also some fun. It is an opportunity to learn about the administrative side of the ExpREES and to get experience on nationwide network cooperation. You may also mention it as a merit in your CV! 

At the end of the spring semester many of student contact persons graduate, which means that the above list isn’t necessarily up-to-date. New student contact persons will be mainly recruited in the ExpREES summer school in August, but you can also contact our coordinator directly, if you are interested in working as a student contact person.


The Expertise in Russian and Eastern European Studies (ExpREES), maintained by the nationwide Russian and East European Studies university network (REES), hereby opens the call for course proposals and funding in the academic year 2020–2021. Funding will be allocated to a degree programme, not to a teacher responsible for the course. In order to apply for funding for your course proposal, please fill in the e-form at https://elomake.helsinki.fi/lomakkeet/102097/ and submit it by 14 February 2021, at the latest.

The ExpREES trains experts in Russian and East European Studies by offering Master’s level courses in different fields of Humanities and Social Sciences focusing the territory of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in Finnish universities of the REES network. The majority of the courses in the ExpREES curriculum consist of the courses offered by the member universities as part of their regular teaching. In addition, in the academic year 2021–2022, the REES network may fund courses specifically designated for the purposes of the ExpREES with up to 50,000 euros in total.  

Target group and form and content of teaching

The ExpREES enrolls students from all 12 member universities of the REES network. In order to facilitate the participation in the courses funded by the ExpREES for as many ExpREES students as possible, preference in the allocation of funding will be given to courses that provide an opportunity for distance learning. In the e-form we would ask you to specify how the course may be taken by using the distance learning option, e.g. whether live streaming will offered, whether the lectures will be recorded and uploaded in the Moodle or whether the whole course will be available online.

When allocating funding, we give preference to courses with a multi-disciplinary approach as well those organized around one theme but addressing different regions/countries of the territory of the former Soviet Union or Eastern Europe. We also encourage applicants to propose courses that focus on the territory of the former Soviet Union other than Russia and that of Eastern Central Europe. A comparative approach is also welcome. We encourage cooperation in course planning between different universities of the network. Universities may apply for funding for courses which have been planned in cooperation and will be offered in the teaching programmes of the given universities. A university will act as a coordinator and apply for funding for the co-hosted course.

The extent and level of the course

●  The extent of the course is, as a rule, 5 ECTS. However, please follow the instructions of the host university.
●  The course should be offered at the Master’s level (i.e. advanced).
●  In the course description, please give the following information: the content of the course (the lecture outline and the names of teachers, the amount of contact hours, teaching/learning methods, language of instruction), expected learning outcomes and assessment methods.


●  The maximum amount of funding allocated to a course is 3,000 euros. The method and content of teaching will be taken into account in the funding decision (see above).
●  The costs to be reimbursed may include teaching fees (payments for unsalaried teachers, researchers working with a scholarship, visiting teachers, teaching which is not part of the work plan), teaching materials and organization of exams, social security fees, travel and accommodation expenses, and rents of teaching premises. The host university is expected to participate in covering part of the costs. Please note that if your university charges the VAT, it must be taken into account in the budget (i.e. it will decrease the amount of funding available e.g. for teaching fees).
●  The costs will be reimbursed only according to real expenses. Therefore, a report of accountancy must be attached in the invoice. Detailed instructions will be given in the funding decision.

A joint application by the university – please contact a member of the REES board

When planning to apply for ExpREES course funding, we would recommend to contact a member or deputy member of the Board of the REES network at your university, please see https://www.helsinki.fi/en/aleksanteri-institute/education/master-level/exprees/exprees-decision-making#section-84187. The course proposals of one university may be gathered together and submitted as a joint funding application. From the members of Board you may learn about a potential joint application of the given university.  When gathering and submitting a joint application, you will avoid proposing overlapping topics. In addition, discussing the topics among the researchers specializing in REES may alsosupport the research interests of each host university.  

The sum applied for the courses of the joint application may be defined as a total sum in the e-form. However, the applicant must differentiate the costs of each course in an attachment (regarding the differentiation, please see the budget section in the e-form). If you submit a joint application, please tick the correct box in the appropriate section of the e-form. Individual and joint applications will be processed on equal principles.

Please note before submitting the course proposal and after receiving a positive funding decision

● The course must be offered free of charge and it should be part of the curriculum and teaching programme 2021-2022 of a degree programme of the given member university of the REES network. Funding will be allocated to a degree programme/department/faculty hosting the course, not to a teacher responsible for the course. If the host university takes part in the funding of the course, this will be regarded as an advantage when making decisions on the allocation of the ExpREES funding.
● Before submitting the application, the applicant should make sure that all teachers of the course give their consent e.g. to the recording of the course, or offering the course online.
● The applicant together with the host university must plan the schedule and book the teaching premises for the course.
● The applicant/other person responsible for the course should submit a more detailed outline of the course and other updated information to the ExpREES Study Guide by the deadline given in the funding decision.
● Student feedback should be gathered from all the courses funded by the ExpREES. The teacher responsible for the course should write a summary based on the student feedback (instructions will be sent together with the funding decision).

Instructions for the invoicing

Upon a positive funding decision made by the Board of the REES network, the degree programme/department/faculty hosting the course must first, after the course has been organised, pay the remunerations from the assets of the host university. Then the host university submits a breakdown of expenditures to the Aleksanteri Institute together with the invoice.

Announcing the decision

The funding decision will be made by the by the Board of the REES network. The applicants will receive the funding decision by 19 March 2021.