New positions for research group leaders

Drs. Nelli Hankonen and Keegan Knittle take new positions in Tampere and Jyväskylä, respectively.


Tampere University campus

(Kuva: Jenni Toivonen, Tampereen yliopisto/Tampere University)

Nelli Hankonen, director of the Behavior Change and Well-being research group at the University of Helsinki, has been named Professor of Social Psychology within the Faculty of Social Sciences at Tampere University. She started in this new role on the 1st of September, and plans to continue with similar research lines there. This includes continuation of the Citizen Shield and MotiStyleSport projects. Postdoctoral researchers Katri Kostamo and Elina Renko, PhD students Matti Heino and Melina Puolamäki, project planners Minttu Palsola and Kaisa Saurio, as well as research assistant Meri Pietilä will also move to Tampere University as part of this transition.

After nearly 7 years within the Social Psychology Unit at the University of Helsinki, co-director of the research group Keegan Knittle has also taken on a new role. His new position is that of Assistant Professor of Exercise Psychology within the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences at the University of Jyväskylä. This new role began on October 1st, and will allow Dr Knittle to advance his research lines in the areas of motivation for physical activity and digital behavior change interventions embedded within clinical settings. In addition, Keegan will provide teaching for a new international Master’s programme in the Psychology of Physical Activity, Health, and Well-Being. His PhD student Malin Ekholm will remain working at University of Helsinki within the eCare4me project.

While this means that the Behavior Change and Well-being research group will no longer be located within the University of Helsinki, the group will continue as a national-level collaborative network that spans multiple universities. If anything, it is hoped that these new positions will only broaden the network and improve capabilities of collaboration. Further announcements about the network and the future of the group’s bi-monthly “Beachweb” research seminars will be coming soon.