Anu Kajamaa


Description of research and teaching

Anu Kajamaa, PhD, is Adjunct Professor at the Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki, Finland. She is Vice-Leader of an expert group Learning, Culture and Interventions (LECI) and serves as a member in the Faculty Council and Faculty research committee at the Faculty of Education, Univ. of Helsinki. Anu is currently in an Academy of Finland funded research project "Learning by Making: The Educational Potential of School-Based Makerspaces for Young Learners' Digital Competencies" (iMake). She is also the Institutional Leader in an EU H2020-MSCA-RISE-Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research project, entitled "Improving collaborative working between correctional and mental health services".


Anu is a passionate researcher, supervisor and a pedagogically qualified teacher who loves to carry out research based teaching. Her research focuses especially on organizational learning, change and development via interprofessional working and formative interventions. Anu is an expert in sociocultural- and practice based theories, qualitative research methods and participatory intervention techniques, drawing especially from cultural historical activity theory and the Change Laboratory method. Her current research contexts are primary schools, teacher education, health care and social care, and entrepreneurship hubs/Fabrication Laboratories.


She is a research group member in several national and international projects and consortiums, such as in a project on future hospitals together with Centre for Medical Education and Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University, Montreal, Canada and in a project on developing expansive pedagogies with Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, USA. She is one of the founders of the European Centre of Excellence in Qualitative Study and Inquiry in Training and Education, University of Groningen, The Netherlands.


Her doctoral dissertation: Kajamaa, A. (2011) Unraveling the helix of change : An activity-theoretical study of health care change efforts and their consequences was chosen as Highly Commended Award winner of the 2013 Emerald and the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) Outstanding Doctoral Research Awards in the Healthcare Management category. In 2015, students of the Institute for Behavioral Sciences, Univ. of Helsinki, rewarded her The Adult Educator of the Year.


Her background is in Adult Education and doctoral dissertation is an activity-theoretical study of change management and long-term evaluation of health care change efforts within formative interventions. Over 10 years, she has conducted extensive collaborative research and intervention projects and produced several refereed publications in national and international journals.


Anu has been a visiting researcher and teacher in many universities and business schools, such as University of California, Berkeley, USA, McGill University, Canada, Columbia University, USA, Nancy-Metz Business School, France, ESSEC Business School, France, University of Technology Chemnitz, Germany, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, University of California San Diego, USA and University of Otago, New Zealand.


Education information

PhD, Docent


Latest publications

  1. Accepted/In press

    Contradictions as Drivers for Improving Inclusion in Teaching Pupils with Special Educational Needs

    Paju, B., Kajamaa, A. M., Pirttimaa, R. & Kontu, E. 15 Jan 2018 (Accepted/In press) In : Journal of Education and Learning. 2018 / 7, 3, 12 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  2. E-pub ahead of print

    From the abstract to the concrete: Implementation of an innovative tool in home care

    Kajamaa, A. M. & Schulz, K-P. 17 Aug 2017 In : Health Services Management Research.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. Carnivalization as a new mode of collaboration

    Kajamaa, A. & Lahtinen, P. 28 Jun 2016 In : Journal of Workplace Learning. 28, 4, p. 188-205 18 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

View all (30) »

Latest activities

  1. Juha Tuunainen

    Kajamaa, A. (Host)
    29 Sep 2017

    Activity: Hosting a visitorAcademic visit at UH

  2. Kaija Collin

    Kajamaa, A. (Host)
    29 Sep 2017

    Activity: Hosting a visitorAcademic visit at UH

  3. The 2nd ARTEM Organizational Creativity and Sustainability conference

    Kajamaa, A. (Speaker: Presenter)
    14 Sep 201716 Sep 2017

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventOrganisation and participation in conferences, workshops, courses, seminars

View all (140) »


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