Vacant position at the Finnish Institute in Japan


The Finnish Institute in Japan (FIJ) promotes Finnish science, culture and higher education supporting and enabling co-operation and
dialogue between Japan and Finland. The Institute identifies and
recognizes trends and co-operation possibilities connecting potential
collaboration partners. The Institute is part of Team Finland in Japan and one of the 17 Finnish Cultural and Academic Institutes.

The Finnish Institute in Japan is looking for an Academic Research
Coordinator from January 1, 2019 or according to agreement.

As the Academic Research Coordinator you will observe scientific trends and communicate with universities and other academic institutions in Japan and Finland. Other tasks include promoting academic exchange as well as coordinating FIJ’s academic activities such as conferences, symposiums and meetings.
The Coordinator will work under the guidance of the Director of the FIJ.

In order to manage the task successfully, the applicant should have

  • An academic degree
  • Fluency in written and spoken English
  • Native-level Japanese language skills
  • Ability to work in a small but dynamic organization where tasks and duties may vary
  • Knowledge of Finnish culture and experience of studying and/or doing research in Finland

The employment contract will be made for a period of three years with an option for renewal.

Please send your motivation letter and CV, in English, to by October 19, 2018

Inquiries and more information:

Director Anna-Maria Wiljanen, +81 (0)80 4069 7846

Available for phone inquiries on Wednesday October 10, at 2-4pm.

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20th anniversary exhibition sparked huge interest in Finland and Ivana Helsinki

By its closing time on September 24th 2018, ”Love Stories, Road Trips and Dresses” – 20 years of fashion and lifestyle by Ivana Helsinki successfully gathered nearly 3000 visitors interested in fashion, design and Finland.

In many ways, Ivana Helsinki returned to their roots with this exhibition. Established in 1998 by Paola and Pirjo Suhonen, the now renowned fashion and lifestyle brand first came to Japan very early on. This, along with the history as well as the future of the brand, was also discussed in the talk event on September 20th. Lead by Anna-Maria Wiljanen, Head of the Finnish Institute in Japan, and prompted by questions from the audience, the Suhonen sisters also discussed their life philosophies as well as their creative process.

A new Ivana Helsinki book was delivered to the exhibition directly from the printing company. The book portrays the brand’s history through 100 printed fabrics and the stories behind them.


Collaboration between the Finnish Institute in Japan and Ivana Helsinki will continue in the future with a project combining science and culture.

Ivana Helsinki 20th Anniversary Exhibition in Tokyo


The Finnish Institute in Japan is organizing the 20th anniversary exhibition of the Finnish art, fashion and lifestyle brand Ivana Helsinki. “Love Stories, Road Trips and Dresses” – 20 years of fashion and lifestyle by Ivana Helsinki  showcases the journey of Ivana Helsinki from an idea to a recognisable and internationally renowned fashion and lifestyle brand. Finnish Institute in Japan is also celebrating its 20th anniversary and focusing especially on the multitalented Finnish women as role models for the women of today.

Created by Paola and Pirjo Suhonen, Ivana Helsinki is most known for their unique, timeless and functional products. They have since broadened their fashion brand to a whole new lifestyle concept, expressing their own style and values – be it through unique collaborations, handmade rugs or private music shows.



”Love Stories, Road Trips and Dresses” – 20 years of fashion and lifestyle by Ivana Helsinki

Date: 19 – 24, September 2018

Time: 11:00AM – 8:00PM (Closure at 6:30PM on October 19th)

Open everyday & admission free

Venue: Spiral Garden (Spiral 1F)

Address: Spiral 1F, 5-6-23 Minami Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo



Ivana Helsinki: Talk event

Date: September 20 (Thursday)

Time: 6:00-8:00PM

Location: Spiral Garden (Spiral 1F)

Presenting the fascinating story of Ivana Helsinki and a panel discussion about fashion and lifestyle with Paola & Pirjo Suhonen, moderated by the Director of the Finnish Institute in Japan, Anna-Maria Wiljanen.

Limited seats, RSVP to (by Monday September 17)


Documentary film premiere Avanto-Erkki

Time: Shown daily during the exhibition at




Location: Spiral Garden (Spiral 1F)

Avanto-Erkki, a documentary film by Paola and Pirjo Suhonen, will have its Japan premiere during the exhibition. The film focuses on the 93-year-old war veteran Erkki Makkonen enjoying his life, while preparing for the Winter Swimming World Championships in Siberia.

The duration of the film is approximately 1 hour, and it will be screened daily at 11:00AM, 3:00PM and 7:00PM during the exhibition.


Organizer: Finnish Institute in Japan

Cooperation: Ivana Helsinki

Planning support: Spiral

Venue offered by Wacoal Art Center

TelepART grant awarded to musician Petri Kumela

The Finnish Institute in Japan has granted its first TelepART mobility support to Finnish musician Petri Kumela, who is touring Japan later this autumn. Petri Kumela is one of Finland’s most sought-after classical guitarists, known on the international scene for his originality and versatility. He has released nine recordings that have all gained critical acclaim.

Guitarist Petri Kumela in Helsinki, Finland in July 2010. Photo: Saara Vuorjoki

Kumela will perform in Hiroshima, Sapporo, Tokyo and Kawasaki from October 28 to November 4. The concerts include solo recital and chamber music together with mezzo soprano Yukari Komagamine and composer Ichiro Hirano.

Click here for more information on Petri Kumela.

More information on his Japan tour dates.

The TelepART mobility support program is a funding program launched by the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux in 2016. The programme is made for artists in performing arts, such as theatre, circus, music and dance. Through a rapid-access funding model the programme enables artists to quickly react to opportunities.

Apply for the TelepART here.

20th Anniversary Conference of the Finnish Institute in Japan

Tove Jansson:

Visual Artist.Writer.Landscape Enthusiast.Woman.

Photo: © Moomin Characters™


21–22 November, 2018, Tokyo

Organised by:

Finnish Institute in Japan, Tokyo


Proposals due 8 October 2018

The Moomin books are widely known in Japan, but who was the woman behind them? This interdisciplinary conference aims to concentrate on the character of the multitalented Finnish artist Tove Jansson. The proposals can, for instance, discuss the following questions: Which roles and goals did Tove Jansson have for her art and literary works? What were Tove Jansson’s views on politics? How did the different landscapes (above all, her summer cottage Klovharu in the Finnish Archipelago) affect her paintings and books? What was Tove Jansson’s creative process? What was the source of her creativity? The conference also encourages papers that focus on the identity and womanhood of Tove Jansson as well as her impact on today’s women in Japan and Finland.


Call for Papers

We invite 20-minute paper proposals that address issues and discourses arising out of the four subtitles of this conference, which are:

  • Tove Jansson as a visual artist
  • Tove Jansson as a writer
  • Tove Jansson and womanhood
  • The importance of landscape in Tove Jansson’s art

Papers will be peer-reviewed for inclusion in panels. The participation fee will be waived for selected papers. Kindly send your 250-word abstract at the latest on 8 October 2018 to:


Panel Proposals

We also welcome proposals for additional panels, consisting of three to four papers, which develop or expand on the themes of the conference. Kindly send your 250-word panel description, as well as a 250-word paper abstract for each speaker, at the latest on 8 October 2018 to:


Conference Details

Date:                           21–22 November 2018

Venue:                         Meiji-Kinenkan, Tokyo, Japan

Attendance Fee:          JPY 2,000 and JPY 1,000 (for students) 


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Pasi Järvinen elected as the new Project Manager of the Finnish Institute in Japan

The Foundation of the Finnish Institute in Japan has elected Bachelor of Arts Pasi Järvinen as the Project Manager of the Finnish Institute in Japan for a three-year period starting on 1 October 2018. The Project Manager is responsible for planning and coordinating the events and activities of the institute. The institute is located in Tokyo.

Photo by Pasi Järvinen

Järvinen has previously worked as the Managing Director of the Friends of Ateneum. He also has work experience in international organizations and advocacy work.

The Finnish Institute in Japan is an academic and cultural institute operating in Tokyo. It identifies and anticipates the development and cooperation needs of Finland and Japan, especially in the fields of science, culture and education, and it also helps potential partners to find each other between Finland and Japan, as well as Eastern Asia on a wider level.

The Finnish Institute in Japan is looking forward to eventful three years. This year will mark 20 years since the founding of the institute. In 2019, the institute will take part of the celebration of 100 years of diplomatic relations between Finland and Japan, and, in 2020, Tokyo will host the Olympic Games.

Finland has 17 cultural and academic institutes in total around the world. The Finnish Institute in Japan is currently the only office in Eastern Asia.

For more information, please contact the Director of the Finnish Institute in Japan, Dr. Anna-Maria Wiljanen, (, tel. +81 80 4069 7846).

Professor Timo Honkela presents the Peace Machine Concept in a 2-day seminar in Tokyo

What if we allowed a computer to listen to everything we say and read everything we write, and then to analyse the material? According to Timo Honkela, Professor of Research into Digital Information at the University of Helsinki, this could offer a chance for an unprecedented level of understanding – and even world peace.

Honkela’s vision leans on machine learning. While listening to a person and reading her texts, the machine would learn the individual and context dependent meaning that the person give to words and concepts. If machines were to analyse everyone’s way of using language, it would be easy to detect conflicts in meaning. This would essentially reduce misunderstandings and help avoid arguments over the meaning of an agreement. It could also reduce conflicts. In fact, Honkela has named his idea the peace machine with elements related to communication, emotions and society.

Professor Timo Honkela (Photo:



Professor Timo Honkela will discuss about his Peace Machine Concept together with Professor Shugo Nakamura, INIAD Toyo University. The event will be followed by a reception.

Date & time: Tuesday 19 June, 3:00-5:00 P.M.
Place: Embassy of Finland, 3 Chome−5−39, Minami-Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Capacity: First-arrived 70 applications (Free admission, reservation required)
Registration: by June 13, 2018.


Professor Timo Honkela will give a lecture about his book “Peace Machine”.

Date & time: Wednesday 20 June, 3:30-5:30 P.M.
Place: INIAD Toyo University, Akabane Campus, INIAD HALL (Akabanedai 1-7-11, Kita-ku, Tokyo)
Capacity: Free admission, reservation required.
Registration: by June 13, 2018.


Organised by: Finnish Institute in Japan

Supported by: INIAD Toyo University, Embassy of Finland, Tokyo, Business Finland, Tokyo



General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that applies as of May 25, 2018.

The Finnish Institute in Japan wants to offer current information of the Institute´s activities and events to all its audiences. To enable this kind of communication we need, among others, e-mail addresses.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of the EU will apply as of May 25th 2018. The Finnish Institute in Japan will review its own privacy practices and comply with the requirements of the General Data Protection Law to increase transparency. In the future, the Institute will also strive to clearly state its data protection policy when it comes to

  • Why and how personal data is collected?
  • To what purpose personal information is used for?
  • How personal data is distributed?
  • How personal data is stored and protected?

Furthermore, we tell who is responsible for collecting and managing personal data. We also highlight the rights of the public regarding data protection and the legal grounds for the processing of personal data.

You find more information about the Finnish Institute in Japan´s privacy policy and the applied changes to it here.

The Institute’s first monthly knitting club was a success!

On May 21st, the Finnish Institute in Japan held its first monthly knitting club “Ompeluseura”. “Ompeluseura” is a Finnish word, referring to women who regularly gather to knit or sew together. The purpose of this new event is to inspire and empower women in Japan by creating a comfortable space for socializing. At each gathering, a short presentation of an influential Finnish woman is given. This time, director Anna-Maria Wiljanen highlighted the life of Finnish art collector and co-founder of Artek, Maire Gullichsen (1907-1990).

The event sparked a lot of interest, collecting a room full of eager knitters. Each participant was provided with yarn and needles from Finland. The task for the day, was to start knitting socks. There were both newcomers and more experienced knitters, but the Institute’s experienced knitter, director Anna-Maria, made sure that no one was left behind.


Read more about the knitting club in general HERE

The next knitting club gathering will be June 11th, please register in advance at



The Finnish Institute in Japan’s TelepART funding programme helps emerging performing artists showcase their work internationally. The rapid-access style funding is designed to support the expenses for Finnish artists travelling to Japan or Japanese artists travelling to Finland. The Finnish Institute in Japan promotes artistic collaboration between Finland and Japan. TelepART funding will help Finland’s most exciting new performing artists to break into the international scene. The funding is designed especially for emerging talent in performing arts (theatre, circus, music and dance).

The programme enables artists to react quickly to opportunities due to its new rapid-access funding. Grants will only be considered for projects where the organiser, performer and their representatives are committed to the production. Applicants must be able to demonstrate high artistic value, the production must be a collaboration between at least two countries and the performer(s) must receive reasonable compensation for their work. TelepART funding is open for applications throughout the year.

The Finnish Institute in Japan makes the grant decisions with the expert performing arts organisations Music Finland, Dance Info Finland, TINFO and CircusInfo Finland. Applications will be processed within two weeks.

TelepART was launched by the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux in 2016.

The project is supported by the Finnish Cultural Foundation, the Wihuri Foundation and the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture.


Apply for TelepART funding HERE.

More information: telepart(at)