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Henri Pirkkalainen appointed as Assistant Professor of Information and Knowledge Management

Henri Pirkkalainen has been appointed as an Assistant Professor at TUT’s Department of Information Management and Logistics. Through his work, he has looked into the dark side of technology and learned to appreciate a practical approach.

In addition to its great and unequalled benefits, the use of technology has brought humanity a range of unpleasant side effects that are reflected in people’s well-being and work. Henri Pirkkalainen started his work at TUT in May, and his interests lie in the development of improved applications and services for human requirements. The approach he applies is looking into the adverse effects of technology use.

“You could go as far as to say that I study the dark side of technology use,” the newly-appointed Assistant Professor notes.

Some people suffer from technostress, that is stress caused by information technology. Often such stress comes from information overload that is typical for social software. This social software includes the networking services used both at work and leisure, such as Facebook and LinkedIn, wiki services and various collaboration technologies.

Pirkkalainen’s key research areas also include the barriers to technology-mediated knowledge sharing and the forms and manifestations of technology resistance. In addition to the use of educational technologies, for example, he has recently submerged himself in the co-creation of services online. In the process, users and other involved parties from various backgrounds aim to jointly create new digital services with very limited or no face-to-face interaction.

WHO?
Henri Juhani Pirkkalainen (b.1983 in Konnevesi, Finland)

Key degrees:

  • Master of Science 2010, Information systems science, University of Jyväskylä
  • Doctor of Science 2014, Information systems science, University of Jyväskylä


Key work history:

  • Projects and research on the development of social software in the ‘Global Information Systems’ working group in 2009–2016.
  • Pirkkalainen has coordinated several international and national projects related to his own research area.
     

Family and hobbies Spouse and three cats. “You can achieve the best results at work when you have hobbies that also keep your mind and body going in the evening and during your time off. I have played the drums since I was a little kid and I have recently also taken up the guitar. With my spouse, we often go exercising and cook together in the evening.”

“As you can imagine, oftentimes not everything goes according to plan, and there is therefore plenty of room for research in this area," Pirkkalainen points out.

Practical application is key for students and researchers alike

Alongside research, Henri Pirkkalainen’s work as Assistant Professor includes teaching and administrative duties.

“As regards teaching, I will mainly focus on the software business and the themes of global information systems management,” Pirkkalainen explains.

Pirkkalainen will also be involved in the preparations for both national and international projects, which is a duty he is very pleased with.

“I like to really throw myself into new challenges and I believe this enthusiasm will show both in our internal cooperation and national and international research projects.

Pirkkalainen finds it important to maintain close relations between research, projects and teaching. In his view, good cooperation between education and companies from different fields is an asset that TUT has succeeded to embrace. This makes it easier to establish new cooperation and business and it also allows both students and employees to maintain a highly practical perspective.

“I find it extremely important to address research questions which arise from practical life and the solutions of which can be effectively harnessed for practical implementation. Very often, solving such problems necessitates multidisciplinary expertise and cooperation. TUT’s operations truly support this philosophy.”

News submitted by: Sanna Kähkönen
Keywords: education and studies, science and research, working at tut