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Panu Pulma

Panu Tapio Pulma
2 October 1952, Kajaani, Finland

Master of Arts 1980
Doctor of Philosophy 1985 (Finnish and Scandinavian History)
Docent in Finnish and Scandinavian History (University of Helsinki) 1986

Assistant, Associate Professor, and acting Professor (University of Helsinki and University of Joensuu) 19822015
Historical researcher, Kajaani City, 1987–1992
Senior researcher, Academy of Finland, 1997–2000
Academy Research Fellow, Academy of Finland, 2001
University lecturer in Finnish and Nordic History 2001-
Project Manager, Academy of Finland, 1988–91 and 2010–2013

Publications, research projects and other scientific activities

Research interests: Poverty, child welfare and social policy history, family history, urban history, history of minorities

Awards and special achievements
Väinö Voionmaa Award for best local historical research 1996: Pikkukaupungin unelmia. Kajaani 1907-1977 (‘Small town dreams: Kajaani 1907-77’), co-author Oiva Turpeinen
State Award for Public Information 2013: Suomen romanien historia (‘The history of Finnish Roma’), co-authored with a research group
Gunnar Mickwitz Prize for work on Nordic history 2013

Written by Panu Pulma and Riitta-Ilona Hurmerinta (ed.)
Translated by Joe McVeigh and John Calton. Revised by John Calton.

The historical researcher draws on co-operation

When research work is done by commission, your current project is always the most important one. Each research project is a potential reference for a future employer.

– If I were to reflect on the general significance of my research, I’d say the work with a lasting impact has been the books and articles on the history of child welfare and social policy, which are still in constant use,’ says Panu Pulma. ‘Similarly, works which dealt with the history of the Roma, such as Suljetut ovet (‘Closed doors’ (2006), which discusses policies towards the Roma in the Nordic countries, and Suomen romanien historia (‘A history of the Roma in Finland’ (2013), have proven to be socially relevant, says Panu Pulma.

Over the years, Pulma has been involved in several large-scale research projects.

– Out of my research projects, the family history project, which was ground-breaking in its field, the Finnish Roma History project, and the Sveaborg Project, about the fortress island just off the coast of Helsinki, the results of which will be more visible in due course - these are the kinds of things to be proud of.

Pulma finds project work exciting and rewarding, as well as far and away the best part of a researcher’s work. He says that he is a little too lazy to be the lone scholar chipping away at the scholarly coalface.

– I might add that the projects have given me an enormous amount of material for teaching and have reinforced the social nature of my work.

Photo: Ville Korhonen.​
Photo: Ville Korhonen.​


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