Kysymys rehtorille professorien tahtotilan sivuuttamisesta

Kun Helsingin yliopiston professorit viimeksi kokoontuivat, kukaan ei kannattanut siirtymistä autoritaariseen johtamismalliin. Silti se runnottiin läpi. Kysyn rehtorilta, miten hän kokee oman osuutensa asiassa.

Lähetin tämän viestin professorien sähköpostilistalle viime perjantaina  (28.5.2016). Laitan sen nyt myös tänne ennen tänään kello 17 alkavaa professorikokousta. Keskustelu asiasta on jo ryöpsähtänyt käyntiin, mutta tässä vaiheessa nyt vain tämä kysymykseni.

 

Jukka Kola ja muut professorit,

Hienoa, että meillä on tulossa professorien Suuren konsistorin kokous. Ennen kokousta on hyvä pohtia kokouksen merkitystä. Siitä tuli mieleen yksi kysymys.

Yliopistolla on jonkin verran epäselvyyttä siitä, missä määrin johto ottaa muiden näkemyksiä huomioon. Siksi tässä viestissä kysyn sinulta, Jukka, miten olet toiminnassasi ottanut huomioon Suuren konsistorin viime kokouksessa 2014 selkeästi ilmaiseman tahtotilan.

Siinä kokouksessa yksikään, siis ei kukaan, läsnäolevista professoreista kannattanut yliopiston hallituksen esitystä laitosjohtajien ja dekaanien valintatavan muutoksista (raporttini kokouksesta on ilmestynyt aiemmin täällä).

Silti yliopiston hallitus runnoi sen läpi. Saimme tämän nykyisen autoritaarisen hallintomallin, jota kohtaan on laajaa tyytymättömyyttä.

Me professorit olemme perinteisesti se kaikkein konservatiivisin ryhmä yliopistolla. En usko, että mikään muukaan ryhmä, siis opiskelijat tai keskiryhmät, olisivat erityisemmin kannattaneet yliopiston johdon esitystä johtajien valinnasta.

Senkin jälkeen, kun oli tiedossa, että autoritaariseen johtamismalliin siirtyminen oli yhteisömme selkeästi vastustama asia, yliopiston johto päätti kuitenkin siirtyä siihen. Päätös oli kai hallituksen, mutta ainakin minulle on jäänyt vaikutelma, että sinä Jukka olit ainakin jollain tavalla tämän päätöksen kannalla.

Minusta oli surullista, että yhteisömme selkeästi ilmaisema tahtotila jäi merkityksettömäksi. Olisi kiinnostavaa kuulla, miten koet oman toimintasi tässä asiassa. Kysyn tätä sinulta myös siksi, koska olen saanut vaikutelman, että yliopistolla aika moni ajattelee, että johto ei enää välitä yhteistön näkökulmista.

Voi olla, että vaikutelmani perustuu vääriin tulkintoihin. Toivon, että voisit osoittaa vaikutelmani vääräksi. Ehkä oletkin pyrkinyt edistämään mainitsemani kokouksen ilmaisemaa tahtoa jollain sellaisella tavalla, joka on minulta jäänyt huomaamatta.

Olisi hienoa, jos haluaisit tuoda omia näkemyksiäsi tästä asiasta esiin ennen seuraavaa kokousta. Kiitos sen koolle kutsumisesta,

Lämpimin terveisin,

Teivo

Critique as Hysteria: I say this government is hostile to universities

The debate about the future of universities in Finland has been quite intense in the last couple of years. There have been various kinds of protests, including occupations of university buildings by angry students and critical declarations by professors. Some, such as the eminent scholar of Arabic and Islam Jaakko Hämeen-Anttila, have decided to leave the country, citing the hostile attitude of the current government of Finland toward the universities as one reason.

Universities are facing huge budget cuts. Made by a government whose main leaders declared before the elections that they would not cut the budget for education. The derogatory comments they have made about universities and scholars have also contributed to the negative perceptions many (and arguably most, of course not all) scholars have of this government’s policy toward universities. I have also stated publicly various times that the government is hostile toward science and universities. .

Today Karina Jutila, director of the think tank e2 related to the prime minister’s Center Party, published an article where she criticized my claim that this government is hostile to science and universities. Continue reading

Toward a Very Political Economy of Capitalism

In case anyone is curious about my take on the possibilities of democratization of capitalism, this is a preview of  some things I will be talking about here in Brighton. In academic jargon, it is an abstract, starting with a couple of conceptual clarifications.

A full paper will be available later. I post these short lines here with the hope that someone might care to give me constructive criticism (or any other comments).

Right now a wonderful conference on What’s The Point of International Relations is going on at the University of Sussex. Various key people of our academic discipline (or however one wants to call IR) are speaking here. It was a real honor to be included in that list, also because I have wanted to come to Sussex University (and the cool town of Brighton) since a long time. Continue reading

First Response to Elections in Venezuela: Past Confidence in Vote Counting Confirmed

The opposition has won the parliamentary election in Venezuela. President Maduro recognized the defeat immediately and called for calm. In this sense, at least for now, he seems to follow the immediate response of his predecessor Hugo Chávez when the latter lost the referendum in 2007.

Continue reading

Finns Party Member of Parliament Ignorant of the Constitutional Right to Demonstrate

There was an energetic antiracist demonstration yesterday in Helsinki. It was triggered by comments that Member of Parliament Olli Immonen had made in Facebook a few days earlier. Many people, including myself, considered these comments by a high-profile Finns Party member disgustingly racist.

Especially for the standards of the Finnish protest culture, the demonstration was mostly deemed a great success. Sure, there were some minor contradictions.

Today another Finns Party Member of Parliament, Jani Mäkelä, decided to question yesterday’s demonstration. So he asked in Twitter how the demonstration was able to get permits from the authorities so fast. Smart. Except that the Finnish constitution happens to be quite clear: no permit is needed for demonstrations. Continue reading

The Campaign Against G4S at University of Helsinki Was Successful

The University of Helsinki changes its provider of security services. The previous provider was G4S, widely criticized for its alleged human rights violations in Palestine/Israel and elsewhere. This can be considered a victory for the campaign that had demanded that G4S be kicked out of the University of Helsinki. I feel happy.

I am not in the position to make any official statements about the reasons behind my university’s decision to discontinue relying on the services of the G4S. The previous contract was over, G4S was bidding for a new one and lost the bid. Nevertheless, I believe it is clear that our campaign had an impact on the process. Let me briefly remind you of some of the moments of the campaign. Continue reading

Should the CIA have a Recruitment Booth at International Studies Association Conventions?

“Imagine this is your first high school reunion and nonchalantly you say ‘I work for the CIA’ and all eyes turn toward you”.

This was written on a CIA promotional leaflet distributed at an International Studies Association (ISA) convention a few years ago. Hilarious, for sure, but also disturbing.

How come an agency that systematically tortures people has been able to have a recruitment booth at the world’s largest academic gathering of international studies? I started wondering about this when packing to cross the ocean for yet another ISA annual meeting. Continue reading