Jan Lindström
Humanist of the day

Jan Lindström

Jan Lindström is an expert in Nordic languages specialised in Swedish and Fenno-Swedish. He has primarily researched interactional linguistics, i.e. how language functions in social interaction. During his study days, Lindström had no particular idea of a university career. Nevertheless, when those courses demanding independent research began to feel the most rewarding, he soon found himself on an academic path. Today, Lindström is a professor of Scandinavian languages.

Jan Lindström

Jan Krister Lindström
Born April 4, 1964, Helsinki

Master of Arts 1990 (Scandinavian languages), Licentiate 1993 and PhD 1999, University of Helsinki

Teaching assistant, Scandinavian languages, 2002-04, acting professor 2005, 2007-08, professor 2008–, University of Helsinki
Vice-dean of the Faculty of Arts 2010-13, University of Helsinki
Director of the Faculty for Scandinavian Languages and Literature 2006-09, University of Helsinki
Research doctor 2002-05, the Samtalsspråkets grammatik – Grammar in Conversation project, University of Helsinki (Swedish Foundation for Humanities and Social Sciences)
Linguistics working group member 1998, Svenska litteratursällskapet i Finland

Publications, research projects and other academic activity

Research themes:
Interactional linguistics, language contact and Fenno-Swedish, construction grammar, language policy

Oskar Öflund Foundation award 2012
Svenska litteratursällskapet i Finland prize for academic monographs 2009
Svenska litteratursällskapet i Finland prize for doctoral dissertations 2000

Photo: Veikko Somerpuro
Written by Jan Lindström (Tomas Sjöblom ed.)
Translated by Matthew Billington

I am a professor of Scandinavian languages, as the field is traditionally known. In fact, professors in the field usually specialise in the Scandinavian language of their country. Danish, Swedish and Norwegian professors mainly all study their respective languages—and in Finland it is commonly Swedish, as it is our second national language.

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The term of interactional linguistics arose at the turn of the 21st century, when researchers began combining language analyses and social constructs in spoken language. What is meant by the concept is the kind of practically oriented, conversation analysis based language research that became popular with linguists in the 1980s.

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