Tapio Litmanen

At the moment I am engaged in a very interesting Academy Research Fellow project called the Societal-Institutional Regulation of Nuclear Technology. My discipline is sociology – the noblest of all sciences as it claims to be able to chart the whole of social reality. The dimensions of social reality which I try to chart in my scientific activity are environmental questions, social disputes, civic action, social movements and the social consequences of scientific-technological development.

Ever since I started my academic career at the University of Jyväskylä, teaching has been an essential part of my work as a temporary junior lecturer, junior lecturer, assistant, senior assistant, lecturer and temporary professor. On some occasions I also worked in University administration, mostly at the department and faculty level. For a short period I also worked as head of the sociology unit. I have a doctoral degree in social sciences and docentship in a sociology, specializing in civil society research.

Human Interest

Before studying sociology, I studied journalism and communication. I gathered some resources for my studies by working as a summer journalist for newspapers. This left me with a habit of glancing through at least two newspapers to start the morning and also of following different media during the day.

During leisure time I enjoy jogging alone on forest paths (and skiing during winter) and playing ball games with good friends. Thanks to my children I have become interested in swimming as a form of exercise. As well as science literature I read different kinds of novels and popular science books. Over the last few years I have also read a number of autobiographies of my generation’s rock artists. Cooking with my family or just watching television from our sofa is another pleasant way to spend leisure time.

Research Projects

Conducting sociological research ideally involves satisfying one’s own curiosity using scientific research methods. One great inspiration for sociological curiosity is human action, either of a single man / woman or collective human action, but human rationality also takes very interesting forms. My curiosity has led me to engage in a number of research projects, including an investigation of citizens’ attitudes to mining, environmental conflicts, the societal dimensions of nuclear technology and the fundamental essence of the peace movement and peace activism.

The use of social theory to examine the whole of social reality fascinates me. Although I recognize that some theoretical strands are more interesting than others, I believe that it is good to try to maintain some kind of wide interest in social theories. Different research topics may require a range of theoretical perspectives. In my own research projects I have moved from social constructivism to system theory, structural theories and action theories, and even to certain types of theories of political economy.

Selected Publications

  • Litmanen, Tapio Solomon, Barry, D. & Kari, Mika, ”The Utmost Ends of The Nuclear Fuel Cycle: Finnish Perceptions of the Risks of Uranium Mining And Nuclear Waste Management.” Journal of Risk Research, 16 (9), 2013. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13669877.2013.841727
  • Litmanen, Tapio, Kojo, Matti & Nurmi, Anna, “Socio-Technical Challenges of Finland’s Nuclear Waste Policy: Discussion of the Techno-Scientific Community on the Geological Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel.” Risk, Hazards & Crisis in Public Policy, Vol. 3, No. 3, 2012, 84-103.
  • Kojo, Matti, Kari, Mika & Litmanen, Tapio , "Nuclear Community Considering Threats and Benefits of Final Disposal. Local Opinions Regarding the Spent Nuclear Fuel Repository in Finland." International Journal of Environmental Technology and Management (IJETM) 15(2), 2012, 124-145.
  • Litmanen, Tapio & Kojo, Matti, "Not Excluding Nuclear Power: The Dynamics and Stability of Nuclear Power Policy Arrangements in Finland." Journal of Integrative Environmental Sciences 8 (3), 2011, 171-194.
  • Kari, Mika, Kojo, Matti & Litmanen, Tapio, Community Divided. Adaptation and Aversion towards the Spent Nuclear Fuel Repository in Eurajoki and its Neighbouring Municipalities. Final report of SEURA research project. University of Jyväskylä & University of Tampere, 2010. [https://jyx.jyu.fi/dspace/handle/123456789/25794]
  • Litmanen, T. Kojo, M. & Kari, M., "The Rationality of Acceptance in a Nuclear Community. Analyzing Residents’ Opinions on the Expansion of the SNF Repository in the Municipality of Eurajoki, Finland." International Journal of Nuclear Governance, Economy and Ecology, vol. 3 (1), 2010, 42-58.
  • Kojo, Matti, Kari, Mika & Litmanen, Tapio, "The Socio-Economic and Communication Challenges of Spent Nuclear Fuel Management in Finland. The Post Site Selection Phase of The Repository Project in Eurajoki." Progress in Nuclear Energy, 52, (2), 2010, 168–176.
  • Litmanen, Tapio, "Nuclear Power in Societal Flux. The Renewal of Nuclear Power in Finland in the Context of Global Concern Over Energy Security." Nuclear Safety and Simulation, Vol. 1, Number 4, December 2010, 280-290.
  • Kojo, Matti & Litmanen, Tapio (eds.), The Renewal of Nuclear Power in Finland. Palgrave Macmillan, Hampshire, 2009.
  • Litmanen, Tapio, "The Temporary Nature of Societal Risk Evaluation. Understanding the Finnish Nuclear Decisions." In The Renewal of Nuclear Power in Finland. Palgrave/ Macmillan. London, 2009, 192-217.
  • Litmanen, Tapio, “Transillumination of Finnish Nuclear Policy. Introductory article In The Renewal of Nuclear Power in Finland”. Palgrave/ Macmillan, London, 2009, 3-37.
  • Litmanen, Tapio & Tuikkanen, Anu, "Global Sense of Risk. Media Reporting on Scientific Studies and Potential Risks of Mobile Phones." Journal of Research and Practice in Information Technology, Vol. 40, No. 2, 2008, 143-162.
  • Litmanen, Tapio, "The Changing Role and Contribution of Social Science to Nuclear Waste Management in Finland." Energy & Environment, Vol. 19, No. 3+4, 2008, 427-453.