Pia Olsson


    Research areas

  • 6160 Other humanities - European ethnology, kansatiede, kaupunkitutkimus, muistitietotutkimus, etnografia

Description of research and teaching

In my research, I have been interested in how people experience, remember and articulate their lives. I have delt with historical themes such as women's satus in the Finnish society and urban life but also with contemporary themes such as everyday multiculturalism among youth. One of my interests is ethnographic process and the knowledge we can produce through it. At the moment, I am doing research in a project called ‘Shared city’ in which we analyse the ways urban public and semi-public spaces affect interethnic encounters.


Curriculum Vitae



Faculty of Arts, University of Helsinki:

  • Docent (European ethnology) 2005
  • Ph.D. (European ethnology) 1999
  • Ph.Lic. (European ethnology) 1997
  • M.Pol.Sc. (philosophy, Faculty of Political Sciences) 1995
  • M.A. (European ethnology) 1992

Faculty of Humanities, University of Turku

  • Docent (European ethnology)


Positions held                 

  • Professor at the University of Helsinki (European ethnology) 1.8.2015-31.12.2017
  • Research director at the Åbo Akademi University (European ethnology) 1.2.2015–31.3.2015
  • Senior lecturer at the University of Helsinki (European ethnology) 1.3.3012-
  • University researcher in European ethnology, University of Helsinki, 1.8.2009–28.2.2012
  • Doctoral assistant in European ethnology, University of Helsinki, 1.8.2004–31.7.2009
  • Research fellow in the urban studies program “Tradition and Modernity” financed by the Academy of Finland, 1.3.2004–30.6.2004
  • Research fellow: The history of Helsinki (ethnological part) financed by the city of Helsinki, 1.3.2003–28.2.2004
  • Research fellow attached to a Lotta Svärd history project financed by the Ministry of Education and various foundations, 1.7.2000–28.2.2003
  •  Research fellow in an urban studies program financed by the Academy of Finland, 1.1.1999–30.6.2000



Highlighted publications

  1. Women in Distress: Self-understanding among 20th-century Finnish rural women

    Olsson, P. J. Nov 2011 Lit Verlag. 288 p. (European Studies in Culture and Policy; vol. 11)

    Research output: Book/ReportBook

  2. Erilaista etnografiaa?: Kehitysvammaiset nuoret etnografisen kenttätyön osallistujina

    Olsson, P. J. Dec 2012 In : Elore. 2012, 2, p. 73-92 22 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. From Cultural Knowledge to Cultural Heritage: Finnish Archives and Their Reflections of the People

    Olsson, P. & Stark, E. 2014 Huntsville, TX: Sam Houston State University. 202 p. (Journal of Finnish Studies; vol. 18, no. 1)

    Research output: Book/ReportAnthology or special issue

  4. Kirjoittamalla kerrotut: Kansatieteelliset kyselyt tiedon lähteinä

    Olsson, P. (ed.), Korkiakangas, P. (ed.), Ruotsala, H. (ed.) & Åström, A-M. (ed.) Aug 2016 Helsinki: Ethnos ry. 456 p. (Ethnos-toimite; vol. 19)

    Research output: Book/ReportAnthology or special issue

View all (80) »

Latest activities

  1. Kaupunki yliopistopedagogisena kenttänä

    Ainiala, T. (Speaker), Vesalainen, M. (Speaker), Olsson, P. (Speaker), Hanna Mattila (Speaker)
    3 May 2018

    Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


    Olsson, P. (Visiting researcher)
    1 Apr 201830 Apr 2018

    Activity: Visiting an external institutionAcademic visit to other institution

  3. Opponent

    Olsson, P. (Opponent)
    9 Mar 2018

    Activity: ExaminationOpponent of doctoral dissertation

View all (62) »

Latest projects

  1. Sata suomalaista kielellistä elämäkertaa

    Lappalainen, H., Nuolijärvi, P., Mononen, K., Karisto, A., Latvala, P., Markkola, P., Paunonen, H., Röyskö, S., Sandström, C., Snellman, A., Priiki, K. & Olsson, P.

    Koneen Säätiö


    Project: Research project_Research

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Fil. toht., filosofia (humanistinen ala)

ID: 25811