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  • Serra Dominguez, Lluis (2021)
    Beta diversity (total dissimilarity) can be partitioned into two components: dissimilarity attributed to turnover and nestedness-resultant dissimilarity. Turnover refers to the variation in species identities among sites and implies the replacement of some species by others. In contrast, nestedness occurs when species-poor sites have a subset of the biota present in species-richer sites. Although disentangling the relative contribution of these two antithetic components from beta diversity can characterize species assemblages, the dissimilarity indices do not provide information on the processes generating the patterns. Conversely, Hierarchical Modelling of Species Communities (HMSC), which unifies many of the recent advantages of Joint Species Distribution Models, has proved to be the one of the best performing frameworks for unravelling the underlying mechanisms structuring ecological communities. The aim of this research is to explore the relationship between the outputs of the HMSC model and the dissimilarity indices in different communities with a wide range of parameterizations. As the observed patterns measured by the beta-diversity indices result from the underlying processes which HMSC attempts to capture, I hypothesized that both frameworks are at least partially linked to each other. To achieve this aim, I simulated the community data by following the structure of the HMSC model. For simplicity, only one environmental covariate was considered, which was scaled to 0 mean. The intercept of the HMSC model accounted for the baseline occurrence probability of the species, while the slope modeled the species responses to the environmental covariate. The HMSC-intercept and the HMSC-slope, which represent the species multivariate niches, were summarized in terms of center and spread. Simultaneously, the beta diversity indices (total, turnover and nestedness dissimilarity) were calculated from the community data. Finally, the outputs of both frameworks were related in terms of linear modelling and variation partitioning. As hypothesized, the results of this study suggest that outputs of the HMSC model are able to explain most of the variation in the beta-diversity indices, indicating that both frameworks are strongly related. By plotting the species niches (intercept and slope coefficients of the HMSC model) it is possible to determine the main axes of niche variation producing the nestedness and turnover patterns. While nestedness is generated by a shared response of the species to the environmental covariate(s), turnover is produced by variation in the species responses. Finally, the total dissimilarity index is driven by species rarity. In conclusion, the most comprehensive evaluation of the structure of ecological communities and the processes determining the diversity patterns can be achieved by combining the outputs of beta-diversity indices and the HMSC model.
  • Leuschel, Mikaela (2018)
    This research examines how social work lecturers and fourth-year students reflect on the journey towards becoming a social worker in the Zambian context, and how the challenges the students face can be understood. Through a case study approach, the research aims to capture the becoming that occurs during the years of education, before the students graduate and enter the field as professionals. The 'becoming' is approached as a process of identity formation, influenced by interconnected external and interior dimensions. The research examines the challenges that the students and lecturers face, both within the training but also in society at large. The concept of becoming is used as a key tool when trying to capture the transition from student to professional. Since the process of becoming is considered to be connected to time, change and transition, the informants have been asked to reflect on the past, the present and the future. The informants discuss their career choice, the training provided at the institution and the professions current status within the Zambian society. The research framework has a postcolonial approach and constitutes of Margaret Archer's theory on reflexivity and Henry Giroux's thoughts on the crisis of higher education. Due to the lack of previous research within this topic, the importance of both contextualising the research, as well as addressing the professions Western roots is emphasised. The study argues that the impacts of colonialism has to be considered when trying to understand and connect the prevailing rhetoric and practices of social work in general. The question of whether the western theories and methods really are applicable in the Zambian context is raised. The concept of indigenous social work and the struggle to localise the profession is discussed in relation to the idea of a standardised, universal and international profession. The empirical phase of the research was carried out in Lusaka in June and July 2017. Eight semi-structured individual interviews with lecturers in social work and one group interview with five fourth-year social work students were conducted at the University of Zambia. A questionnaire completed by 34 fourth-year students in social work was used as a third source of data. The data has been analysed through a thematic approach. The themes were abstracted mainly through a qualitative thematic content analysis, however a quantitative content analysis was also used on the questionnaire to provide the study with an overview of the educational context. The analysis starts with examining how the university training shapes the students’ processes of becoming professional social workers. The lack of teaching resources and the hierarchy within the institution are discussed topics. Further on the analysis examines the informants’ thoughts on the future, both for the graduating students as well as for the profession. One of the main themes that run through the findings is the profession's lack of recognition and resources, which affects the students and practitioners in many ways. The lack of a clear policy for social services as well as the absence of institutional guidance are also challenges that affect the Zambian welfare system and the people working within it. According to the study, these challenges have resulted in a struggle for the profession to form a collective identity and maintain a certain level of professionalism. Another common thread is the need for contextualisation of the profession, meaning redesigning the profession and the education to better fit the local context and decrease the western influences. To conclude, the biggest challenges for both the social work profession in Zambia as well as for the graduating students were said to be the lack of recognition, resources, regulation and local academic knowledge. This study maps out these challenges and how they are positioned in relation to each other.
  • Carlson, Helmi (2021)
    Tiivistelmä Referat – Abstract One of the major fundamental ecological questions is the composition of a species diet. The diet of a species is crucially linked to finding out its environmental requirements, and information about the possible changes in the diet is needed when studying the impact of environmental changes such as climate change on species. Siberian flying squirrel (Pteromys volans), classified as endangered in Finland, is a species living in coniferous and mixed forests. More precise information about the dietary habits of the species is needed to support conservation. The aim of my thesis was to investigate the diet composition and diet diversity of adult flying squirrels using DNA barcoding of their excrement pellets, a technique that provides highly accurate information quickly and effectively. The main research questions were whether the diet varies between sexes and seasons, whether diet has an influence on body condition and breeding success of the females, and whether diet diversity is related to the amount of suitable forest habitat near the nests. We collected faecal samples from 51 different flying squirrel individuals from two different study areas near the cities of Vaasa and Pietarsaari in June of 2020. Another set of samples from 8 individuals was collected in November 2020 in Vaasa. The collected samples were sent to a laboratory in Turku, where the DNA barcoding was conducted. I then made further statistical analyses from the laboratory results using general linear models to test my study questions. Although the sample size was too small to obtain statistically significant results for all the research questions, my results indicated that the diet of the Siberian flying squirrel differs between males and females just like its other living habits. Male flying squirrels have more diverse diet than female flying squirrels which have more specific and narrow diet, as they also have smaller home ranges during the breeding season and are more linked to their nesting forest patch compared to males. The aspect that female flying squirrels are more specialists during breeding time is crucial for the species conservation planning. DNA barcoding studies with bigger sample sizes should be done to further investigate the relationship between diet diversity and individual’s body condition and to ascertain the statistical significance to the results of this study.
  • Rajisc, Miroslava (2011)
    Globalization is a process which influences most of the world to different extent, and is being defined in greater detail every day, and as such is a popular topic in academic as well as in media and popular discourse, all of which reflects its importance and relevance for the society today. In a sense it is an old process, the scope and influence of which has been increasing in magnitude in last decades through new technologies, new means of communication, and easier travel and mobility. This study deals with definitions and understandings of this complex concept among students at the University of Helsinki. Qualitative interviews were employed to bring to light how students see globalization affecting the world and their lives, and how do they talk about that. Both international and Finnish born students participated in the study. Since main focus of this research was on attitudes, opinions and ideas related to the globalization process and its perceived impact, I employed discourse analysis as a methodological framework. International students and their opinions on identity, consequences of globalization, such as standardization, increased mobility, and interconnectedness are a central part of this study. Also, one part of the study deals with various, often ambiguous feelings that globalization provokes. As a result this research showed various ways of how international students, being a specific social group, understand globalization and their place in the whole process.
  • Gordillo Ruesta, Harold Augusto (2015)
    The current study examined the particular land use land cover change process that occurred in one segment of the Tambopata Natural Reserve Buffer Zone, in the Southeastern Peruvian Amazon region of Madre de Dios, during the period 2004-2011. During such period of time, the study area experimented significant land use transitions, mostly from tropical forest and farming areas towards illegal gold mining activities. Theory explained that such processes occur due to a particular combination of direct and underlying drivers. Therefore, the research objectives of the study, focused to undercover both drivers and their intricate interaction and dynamics that shaped the particular transitions in the study site. Theory also indicated that an integral land use cover change analysis is required to properly formulate sound and adequate measures and policies in order to effectively tackle further land use change leading to deforestation. The long term impact of such measures are transcendental in terms of climate change by avoiding considerable carbon emissions to the atmosphere. The chosen methodology was an integration of qualitative and quantitative approaches, which required primary and secondary data correspondingly. The collection of secondary data included land use change maps for each year of analysis and its corresponding land use change matrix, whereas the collection of primary data required extensive semi-structure interviews in the field. Additionally, the qualitative approach required in the inclusion of grey literature. The analysis of each set of data was initially conducted separately, which resulted in two different but complementary interpretations of the particular land use change in the study site. Both results were later integrated and examined altogether, which resulted into a complete and detailed analysis of the particular event in the study area. The final integration exposed the direct and underlying drivers of change. The integral results exposed a dynamic area that experimented rapid forest loss towards mostly illegal gold mining activities, together with a non-compensatory natural regeneration. In addition, important economic activities identified as forestry and farming concessions, experimented similar transitions. Integral results exposed the direct drivers of change, such as the development of illegal gold mining, the pavement of the Inter Oceanic Highway and new informal agricultural expansion. Similarly, the underlying causes of change were also identified as an intricate and complex combination of pre-established variables such as cultural, economic, demographic, social, political and institutional ones. It was acknowledged that a complex interaction of direct and hidden drivers created the particular deforestation process in the site. However, it was identified that new extraordinary variables remarkably accelerated the transition process towards illegal mining. Such variables were the astonishing international gold price, together with the Inter Oceanic Highway pavement and the relatively new but inefficient decentralization of the national forestry system. Such combination resulted into the remarkable land use conversion towards illegal mining, which caused rapid and pervasive deforestation. Finally, the government proved incompetent to deal with such event and its corresponding development by implementing actions that lacked a complete analysis of the direct and underlying causes, including the social and economic particularities of the area. This resulted into insufficient achievements and inefficient solutions.
  • Laukkanen, Frank (2022)
    This thesis asks whether Finland should experiment with unemployment insurance (UI) benefit frontloading. To answer this question, a comprehensive literature review on the matter is conducted. Covering both theoretical research and empirical frontloading studies, the subject matter is further examined by performing synthetic control method simulations on frontloading experiments in Sweden and Hungary. The data used in the empirical analysis extend from 1990 to 2020 and is hand-picked from freely available WorldBank databases. The question of frontloading has repeatedly came up in the Finnish political discussions during recent years. Experimenting with frontloading has found support among some government parties, but most concrete plans for reforming the UI benefit schedule have came from the opposition, namely from the National Coalition Party. The governing parties have struggled finding a concensus on the frontloading question, mostly due to lack of empirical evidence on its consequences. This thesis sheds light on what measures have been used when the Finnish UI system has been reformed earlier during the 21st century, and what response the Finns have presented for previous adjustments in the UI benefit system. It also discusses on the potential outcomes of the National Coalition Party’s proposals based on the theory, and highlights the effect on overall generousity of Finnish UI system to be negative. Simultaneously, this thesis presents that different frontloading method in Hungary had the desired employment effects while maintaining the overall generousity, resulting in a Pareto-improvement for the society. This thesis contributes to existing UI literature by not only connecting the theory of optimal UI and job search models to empirical experiments in Sweden and Hungary, but also by presenting synthetic control design methods to unemployment rate analysis. Empirical simulations in this thesis from two unconnected frontloading experiments reveal the special preparations needed to work with as volatile variables as the unemployment rate. Even though neither of the simulations resulted in statistically significant results, the methods presented display important features of usage of synthetic control design with unemployment rates concerning future studies.
  • Pietiläinen, Pihla (2020)
    This Master’s thesis seeks to explain the reasons why some autocratic regimes remain stable for long periods of time, whereas others experience greater degrees of instability. The task is approached through a comparative case study approach, where three Central Asian countries that share multiple historical and cultural characteristics but differ in their outcomes are compared with one another. The theoretical background of the thesis encompasses well-established theories on governance strategies and legitimation, which are then evaluated against the Central Asian example. Three countries, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan were selected for the case study. The economic and social characteristics of these countries, as well as the governance strategies adopted by their regimes, were then evaluated in detail. The sources utilized in the analysis included economic and demographic data from the World Bank, survey data from the World Values Survey and reports from international organisations such as Human Rights Watch and Freedom House. Previous scholarship was also consulted. It was discovered that many different mechanisms have kept incumbents in power in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. The leaders of both countries have been successful in promoting a narrative of themselves as guarantors of stability, largely accounting for their docile populations. Kazakhstan, with its extensive oil wealth, has been able to co-opt both elites and significant sectors of the population. Uzbekistan has also benefitted from more modest resource wealth, which has facilitated the co-optation of neopatrimonial support networks, as well as the devotion of resources to state security apparatus. More limited resources have, however, forced the Uzbek regime to rely on coercion more extensively. The thesis concludes with the finding that authoritarian failure is a sum of unfavourable circumstances and poor decision making on the part of the autocrat, especially when elite networks are neglected. Like its neighbours, Kyrgyzstan’s presidents have largely depended on neopatrimonial networks for support. The limited resources available to the regime, however, as well as their excessive concentration in the hands of the president’s immediate family, contributed to elite defections both in 2005 and 2010. These disaffected elites were then able to mobilise large sections of the disillusioned population, suffering both economic hardship and frustration with the corrupt regime. Lacking the coercive capabilities to suppress these uprisings, presidents Akaev and Bakiyev had no option but to step down in 2005 and 2010, respectively.
  • Nuorteva, Maija (2016)
    The new Finnish curriculum (FNBE, 2014) calls for active and engaging learning that supports students' agency and active role in their own learning. It emphasizes creating meaningful contexts that interrelate also with students' out-of-school interests. Research shows participating with organized out-of-school activities has a positive relation to school grades. In addition, it seems that school engagement is low among Finnish 6th graders (Salmela-Aro et al., 2016). However, little is known of what currently interests Finnish pupils and how their topics of interest are related to academic well-being. This study explores the topics of interest and interest-driven participation and further, their relation to school engagement, school burnout and grades (GPA) of 6th graders. The study was part of Mind the Gap project (Academy of Finland #265528) and the participants (n=735) were 6th graders from Helsinki. I conducted content categorization of the whole sample that showed a rich variation of interests, largest categories being sports (43.8%) and arts (27.9%). The quantitative analyses looked at the intensity and form of the activities. I identified three interest profiles with two-step cluster analysis: Organized team participators, Informal individualistic participators and Intensive participators. The Organized team participators were most interested in team sports. They reported high school engagement, low burnout and high GPA whereas Informal individualistic participators had lower school engagement, high GPA and moderate school burnout. They were the most interested in music and arts. Intensive participators, who were especially interested in social interaction, were engaged to school, but had higher levels of burnout and the lowest GPA. The results indicate lack of supporting interest-driven participation in schools: only Intensive participators were almost as active inside as outside of school. It may be difficult for teachers to adopt new practices that call for supporting interest-driven participation. However, it would be important to use students' personal interests to bridge between school world and students' lives and to promote student agency and support school engagement.
  • Amorim, Danielle (2022)
    This MA-thesis explores the phenomenon of questioning language choice on TikTok’s FIN/ENG multilingual content. Traditionally monolingualism has been viewed as the standard and while attitudes towards multilingualism have become much more accepting and appreciative, the negative stigma attached to e.g., code-switching can still today result in surprisingly strong reactions towards the mixing of languages. Yet, as a result of globalization and the increasingly central role information technology plays in modern-day communication, features of multilingual speech have become somewhat common in every-day interactions. While studies dedicated to investigating the various aspects of multilingualism already exist in the field of computer mediated communication, the ‘in flux’ nature and constant development of new social media platforms creates demand for further examination of the subject. The content catering, algorithm driven, social media platform of TikTok has gained considerable global popularity in the recent years, yet little to no research on its linguistic content exists. Thus, this thesis seeks to begin addressing this research gap by answering the following research questions: (1) What kind of comments are used in questioning language choice on TikTok’s multilingual content? (2) What kind of…(A) categorizable patterns emerge from comments that question language choice on TikTok’s multilingual content? (B) impoliteness features are used in comments that question language choice on TikTok’s multilingual content? (3) Can the act of questioning language choice be considered as negatively marked online behavior? To explore these questions, the data for this study—TikTok comments that exhibit the function of questioning language choice in response to FIN/ENG code-switching—were manually gathered from TikTok by using the platform internal search function and by engaging with all content associated with FIN/ENG multilingual speech. This resulted in 75 comments which were subsequentially anonymized and transcribed. Qualitative close analysis was carefully performed on the transcribed comments in search for emergent patterns and features across the data. Additionally, the data was also combed for instances of face threatening acts (Brown and Levinson 1987) and impoliteness strategies (Culpeper 1996) and compared to the key elements found in negatively marked online behavior. The findings of this study indicate that comments questioning language choice on TikTok’s multilingual content are above all multifunctional. Patterns of emergent features reveal that the comments are often delivered through acts that are face threatening and deploy a variety of impoliteness strategies that either limit the multilinguals’ independence or meet them with rejection, thus qualifying as negatively marked online behavior. Reoccurring themes in the data tap into identity and revolve around evoking shame, addressing nation(ality), claiming discomfort, pejorative use of ‘finglish’, questioning functionality, and inviting other users to observe the multilinguals’ language use in response to their code-switching. Though these findings are not directly generalizable to all online questioning of language choice, they do provide a comprehensive dissection of the act of questioning language choice in response to FIN/ENG multilingual speech exhibited on the little studied platform of TikTok. This thesis proposes that more research into the platform specific intricacies of TikTok is necessary, especially to understand the impact of its algorithmic agency in community grouping, identity construction, and mediating of online communication.
  • Laitinen, Saara (2017)
    Englantia käytetään yhä enenevässä määrin lingua francana ympäri maailmaa. Suurin osa näistä puhujista puhuu äidinkielenään muuta kieltä kuin englantia, mikä johtaa maailmanlaajuisesti ennennäkemättömiin kielellisiin tilanteisiin, joita vauhdittaa muun muassa kansainvälisten yhteisöjen kasvu ympäri maailmaa. Euroopassa englantia toisena kielenä puhuvien määrä on erityisesti nousussa alueilla, joissa sitä ei puhuta virallisena kielenä, kuten Pohjoismaissa ja Alankomaissa. Tässä tutkielmassa tarkastellaan englantia toisena kielenä puhuvien kieli-identiteetin rakentumista Suomessa. Tarkoituksena on tutkia, miten osallistujat rakentavat kielellistä identiteettiään kertomuksina ja miten he näkevät roolinsa ja oikeutensa englannin puhujina. Tutkielman teoreettinen viitekehys koostuu kolmesta tutkimusalasta: englanti lingua francana (ELF), kaksikielisyys ja identiteetti. Identiteettiä tarkastellaan poststrukturaalisen perinteen mukaisesti dynaamisena ja moninaisena konstruktiona, joka on ristiriitainen ja ajassa ja paikassa muuttuva. Identiteetille on olennaista subjektiivisuus: yksilö voi samaan aikaan sekä vaikuttaa omaan identiteettiinsä että olla ulkoisen vaikutuksen alainen. Tässä tutkielmassa tätä ulkoista vaikutusta tarkastellaan erityisesti määritelmien, kuten äidinkieli ja natiivipuhuja, sekä yksikielisen natiivipuhujan ihanteen näkökulmasta. Tutkielman aineisto koostuu strukturoiduista taustatietolomakkeista ja puolistrukturoiduista kerronnallisista henkilöhaastatteluista. Osallistujina on kuusi Suomen kansalaista, jotka ovat käyttäneet nuoresta asti englantia lingua francana ja kokevat sen vahvaksi kielekseen. Nämä osallistujat ovat elämänsä aikana kuuluneet kansainvälisiin yhteisöihin asuessaan eri puolilla maailmaa. Henkilöhaastattelut on tehty kerronnallisen teemahaastattelun muodossa, ja niitä analysoidaan diskurssianalyysin keinoin. Analyysin tukena käytetään positioteoriaa, jonka mukaan identiteetti rakentuu diskursseissa positioiden avulla. Nämä positiot voivat olla refleksiivisiä (itse määriteltyjä) tai interaktiivisia (toisten määrittelemiä), ja ne muokkaavat yksilön minä-kuvaa erilaisissa diskursiivisissa tilanteissa. Tutkimuksen tulokset tukevat väitettä kieli-identiteetin dynaamisuudesta ja muuttuvuudesta. Osallistujat näyttävät rakentavan kielellistä identiteettiään kontekstisidonnaisesti nojaten erilaisiin kielellisiin tekijöihin, kuten syntyperä, kompetenssi, funktio ja asenteet. Diskurssianalyysin ja positioteorian avulla analysoidut kertomukset osoittavat, että hallitseva yksikielisen natiivipuhujan ideaali vaikuttaa jossain määrin osallistujien kieli-identiteettiin. Lisäksi tuloksista havaitaan, että ulkoinen ja sisäinen (itse-) identifiointi ovat paikoittain ristiriidassa keskenään. Tämän vuoksi väitän, että kielelliset konstruktiot, kuten äidinkieli ja natiivipuhuja, eivät tue osallistujien kaksikielistä ja dynaamista kieli-identiteettiä.
  • Stein, David (2012)
    This study attempts to offer a consistent reading of Martin Heidegger’s notion of meaning within his philosophy of language. The reading widely utilizes Heidegger’s lifetime work, reaching from his earlier writings published prior to his first major work Being and Time (Sein und Zeit, 1927) to his later publications of the late 1950s. Through a discussion on the key concepts of Heidegger’s approach to language as introduced in Being and Time, an understanding of meaning as a dynamic process of execution, rooted in Heidegger’s earlier concept of Vollzugssinn, is suggested. The pre-predicative element of meaning, often viewed in secondary-literature as remaining beyond language and hence as being characteristically non-linguistic, is regarded in the presented reading as remaining within language. This is related to Heidegger’s effort to circumvent what he called the 'metaphysical distinction' (metaphysischer Unterschied), i.e., the traditional distinction between contingent sounds and the definitional meaning they refer to. The study elaborates the notion of meaning in Heidegger’s later publications as a process of continuous execution and connects it with the concept of movement. Movement as a distinctive character of language is distinguished from the idea of an unattainable chaotic stream. Here I briefly compare Heidegger’s standpoint to that of Wilhelm Dilthey (1833–1911) and his take on language. I show that Heidegger’s new notion of linguistic meaning leads to a transformed notion of experience. Finally, the acquired terminological tools are utilized to conceptually unfold language and to carefully examine the boundary between language and silence, music, gesture and dance. In this context, Heidegger’s terms 'earth' (Erde) and 'world' (Welt) are approached. My reading thus attempts to illustrate how Heidegger attains a renewed, broader notion of meaning beyond the metaphysical distinction and thus introduces an innovative and novel conception of language.
  • Söderlund, Ina Maria Elise (2017)
    The research focuses on the prohibition on excessive pricing in Article 102 TFEU. This prohibition belongs to one of the most criticized ambits of EU competition law. Still, the Court of Justice of the European Union has clearly stated that high prices by dominant undertakings may amount to an abuse in some cases, most recently in September in its judgment AKKA/LAA (C-177/16). The case-law, as well as the Commission’s decisional practice, is very sparse and at times in-coherent. This research attempts to assess and systematize the case-law by focusing both on the assessment of excessiveness and on enforcement in cases where prices are deemed excessive. The research takes a legal dogmatic approach. As is customary in research on EU law, linguistic, systemic and teleological interpretation is used. When dealing with competition law, the economics that are at the backdrop of the law cannot be ignored. In addition to a legal dogmatic approach, an interdisciplinary approach will hence also be adopted. It is also important to note, that the research presumes consumer welfare to be the ultimate aim of EU competition law. The first chapter of the actual research contains a look at the economics of pricing, as well as an overview on the prohibition on abuse of dominance pursuant to Article 102 TFEU. This is justified by the need to understand the context of the subsequent chapters. In the second chapter, the criticism on excessive pricing action is introduced, followed by the different proposals presented in the doctrine on what the test to assess excessive pricing should be. After this follows an attempt to systematize the case-law, and last an assessment of whether the different tests proposed by the doctrine match the case-law. The last chapter discusses the enforcement of the prohibition on excessive pricing. The findings of the research are that there should be more of a focus in the doctrine on systematizing and improving the case-law, instead of purely de lege ferenda research focusing on the problems with enforcement. There seems to be a consensus on that enforcement is reasonable in certain exceptional cases where the market is unlikely to correct itself within a reasonable timeframe, and this is what should be focused on. This research shows that the CJEU currently accepts several different tests, with varying burdens of proof. It is suggested that this is not ideal from the point of view of legal certainty, and that the different tests should be brought closer to each other. The research also shows that there are still a number of fundamental questions unanswered by the CJEU, such as what costs are relevant for the assessment, whether the tests should revolve around an as-efficient competitor and whether demand factors are relevant in all cases or only in the so-called Lucazeau test, named after case Lucazeau (Joined cases 110/88, 241/88 and 242/88). The research also shows that there are many possible remedies for the Commission to use in a case of excessive pricing, and that the presumption should not be that excessive pricing enforcement always would amount to price regulation. It is further noted that the Commission’s reticence to bring cases concerning excessive pricing might be misplaced, as the rise in such actions by national competition authorities indicates a need for clarity in the currently inconsistent case-law. A recent alarming development is also observed, whereby the Commission might be trying to circumvent its high burden of proof through Commitment decisions.
  • Ylä-Anttila, Tuukka (2012)
    This Master’s thesis focuses on the arguments and justifications of Finns Party (Perussuomalaiset, PS) candidates before the Finnish parliamentary elections of 2011, where the populist party succeeded tremendously, over quadrupling its share of votes. The context is one of a rising tide of nationalist populism in Scandinavia and elsewhere in Europe. Other studies have theoretically and empirically provided some explanations for this dynamic both elsewhere and in Finland. However, a study of political sociology on the Finns Party candidates’ argumentation can shed light on the cultural specificity the nationalist populist phenomenon takes on in the Finnish case. It is argued here that this specificity is born out of the legacy of Finnish populism, nationalism and political culture, including the legacy of the Finnish Rural Party (Suomen maaseudun puolue, SMP, 1959–1995), the predecessor of the PS. Data that facilitates such an analysis is found in the Helsingin Sanomat Voting Advice Application. This political questionnaire was answered by 202 (85%) PS candidates and released online as open data, providing a unique dataset not previously available. By a content analysis informed by the justification theory of Luc Boltanski and Laurent Thévenot, the study answers the following questions: How is Finnish political culture and history visible in the way the European populist phenomenon takes its shape in the PS? Is the PS geographically divided to a rural part with SMP rural populist roots and an urban part in line with the contemporary European populist radical right? It was hypothesized that rural PS populism is more left-wing in nature and stresses rural poverty, whereas urban PS populism sees immigration issues as more salient and is more right-wing in its economic policy. The rural candidates were expected to present justifications based on equality and social justice more often, and the urban candidates to use ones based on market efficiency. This hypothesis indeed holds true, according to the results of this study, but with some critical corrections. First, the rural/urban division is not as clear-cut as hypothesized. The radical right candidates are a minority even within the urban candidates. The mainstream of rural and urban candidates was more of a left-populist nature. Second, while a gender aspect was missing from the hypothesis, gender was indeed to be considered, since the radical right candidates were even more overwhelmingly male than they were urban. Third, while there were differences between the rural and urban candidates in their usage of justifications, this varied with the question and was not as consistent as hypothesized. Nevertheless, the use of justifications based on efficiency was notable. Both rural and urban candidates often related to political issues as to be decided upon with calculations of expected consequences. This is something that is typical of Finnish political culture, and in this study, it is found to be typical of Finnish populism as well.
  • Thimm, Alina (2018)
    This research examines the role and meaning of borders in the life of international students by having a focus on the personal border stories of international students acquired through a problem-centred interview (Witzel, 1982). The mental aspect of borders has so far been overlooked in the border research. Therefore, the question aroused whether the classical border definition needs to be updated based on the students’ personal border stories. This is done by comparing the border stories with other researchers’ border definitions. Furthermore, when investigating the role of borders in an international students’ life, a paradoxical treatment by the Finnish authorities was discovered. A phenomenon which Moskal (2016) describes as ‘liberal paradox’. For this reason, I decided to also focus on whether the liberal paradox, meaning the states caught between open and closed borders, can really be discovered in Finland. This is done by comparing the interview content with the statements of the Finnish government and the University of Helsinki. The data is analysed with of Grounded Theory by Glaser & Strauss (1967). The analytical results can show that the liberal paradox is existing in Finland in the following areas: residence permit, travelling, banking and working. However, international students are in general satisfied with the situation. Problems are only reported at the beginning of the studies, when the residence permit is expired and after graduation. Furthermore, the working regulations are not satisfying international students. Even though the liberal paradox seems to be not severe from the international students’ perspective, it would be advisable for the Finnish government to improve the conditions in the listed areas. Border regulations do matter when an international student is choosing a country to study in abroad. Nevertheless, international students do not oppose border regulations in general, they are rather in the support of the regulation if the implementation is fair. In the end, international students also struggle with the liberal paradox and do not find it realistic to have a world without borders despite their dreams about it. The more theoretical part of the analysis of this master thesis can prove that researching the mental aspect of borders would be a valuable addition for the border research. However, a totally new border definition is not needed. Mezzadra & Neilson (2012)’s approach to treat borders as a method proved to be a sufficient approach as it allows the inclusion of personal border stories (Mezzadra & Neilson, 2012).
  • Venäläinen, Anna-Stina (2015)
    The traditional idea of a company consists of five common characteristics. These are legal personality, limited liability, transferable shares, delegated management with board structure and investor ownership. It is said that these core characteristics support the idea of shareholder primacy. The traditional idea of the purpose of a company has been for a long time to maximize the shareholders’ wealth ie shareholder primacy but in the recent years there has been discussions whether that is actually the right purpose or not. Due to this different theories have been created such as enlightened shareholder value and stakeholder primacy. These theories have been discussed by academics and supporters of each group have tried to show that their idea is the best. It has proven to be a difficult task and no one has been able to create bulletproof evidence that would prove their ideas as the best one. Sometimes it is important to look at the legislation in order to find out the purpose of a company. The wording varies in different countries but some do not state a specific purpose. It must be also remembered that there are other obligations that are imposed on companies and their directors by other laws and regulations. These relate especially to social responsibility. It has been recognised that most of the successful companies are acting responsibly. It must be also noticed that there are some big crises that have arisen from directors’ negligent behaviour, such as Enron and BP’s oil spill. Whatever the purpose is, it must be remembered that in order to create successful business, the directors have a variety of issues to consider and take care of. It is difficult to state just one specific purpose as most of these things are attached together.
  • Kukkonen, Anna (2013)
    This Master’s thesis examines the moral and political claims presented in the climate change debate in the French public sphere. My research material includes newspaper coverage from United Nations Climate Change Summits in Copenhagen (2009) and Durban (2011) in the French daily Le Monde as well as interviews from local civil society actors. While media debates on climate change have been widely studied, the moral dimension of these debates has been largely neglected. The objective of this study is to fill this gap and emphasize the moral and cultural dimensions in tracing the problems related to global climate governance. Secondly, I will emphasize the growing role of civil society actors in the governance of climate change, the solutions they offer and the way in which they justify their arguments. France is chosen as the context for this study because of its strong commitment to environmental issues at the political level. The central role of nuclear power in its energy production as well as France’s active role in shaping EU’s climate policy makes it an interesting research context as well. The concepts and methods from political sociology, utilized in this study, will shed light on the cultural specificities of this debate in the French media and civil society. By the theoretical framework of justification theory, developed by Luc Boltanski and Laurent Thévenot, my objective is to analyse climate change related disputes and serve as well as a contribution to this fairly new approach in sociology. With a method called Public Justifications Analysis (PJA), I aim to answer the following research questions: What are the specific features of the climate change debate in the French media and civil society? What kinds of solutions do different actors offer to tackle climate change and how do they justify them morally? What are actors’ conceptions of justice and worth, and in which sense do these conceptions differ and on the other hand converge? How is the French political culture visible in the public debate and in argumentation? With justification theory we can reach culturally sensitive results in relation to climate politics and thus make comparative research between different countries and their climate change debates. In this study, the results will be compared to the findings obtained from the U.S. The main results of the study can be summarized as follows: Firstly, civic values are at the heart of the French argumentation forming a bridge between the media debate and the interviews from civil society. French actors argued that democratic decision-making in the form of a global, legally binding agreement is the most effective way to tackle climate change. French actors also emphasized social justice and called for solidarity and burden sharing between the rich and poor countries. Secondly, civil society organisations offered alternative frames in the interviews to understand climate politics. In addition, their arguments were generally more radical than those presented in the media debate: they argued that market, civic and ecological values are not compatible and therefore suggested more profound changes to the societal system by stronger democratic regulation of global economy. Overall, the use of civic arguments seemed to be typical of French political culture on the basis of this study’s results. Thirdly, while the relationship between the French state and the civil society has traditionally been conflictual, in the case of climate politics it was more based on negotiation and mediation.
  • Lehtonen, Noora (2022)
    Friendship can be defined as long-term social bonds between non-kin, characterized by mutual affection and support. Friendship is often studied in dyadic interactions or in ego-networks, but less is known about the group level processes of friendship. This thesis investigates factors related to maintenance of adult friendships over longer periods of time, using real-life, retrospective data of friendship groups formed during the study years and maintained well into adulthood. Based on group research in cognitive and social psychology and evolutionary theories on friendship and cooperation, I am especially interested in the effect of group size and group bonding on group success, as well as the role of possible gender differences. Using data from the Fraternity Friendship Study (N = 284), collected from fraternity alumni members, I investigate factors that help adult friendship groups succeed over time. The friendship groups were between 5 and 18 members in size and were formed 12-24 years ago. The survey data regard aspects of fraternity activities and friendship groups both at the time of studies and at present. Group success is measured as group bonding (the Inclusion-of-Other-in-Self or IOS scale), reflecting the members’ emotional closeness towards the group, and meeting frequency. Qualitative aspects of group functioning are also examined. Results show that group success was related to group size at the time of group formation, as well as with qualitative aspects of the group, such as information flow, perceived homophily, and perceived attractiveness of the friends in the group. Group bonding moderated the effect of group size on meeting frequency, so that smaller groups benefitted more of bonding. Group bonding was also itself an important factor for how active the groups remained over the years. Group success did not differ between male and female friendship groups: bonding, meeting frequency, and group size did not vary by gender. However, group size had a slightly larger effect for the maintenance of female friendships, compared to male groups: especially small female groups were more likely to lose contact. Overall, a group size of approximately 10 members or more, roughly corresponding to sympathy group in the layered social network model, was found to be beneficial for group success.
  • Lyytinen, Joonas (Helsingin yliopistoUniversity of HelsinkiHelsingfors universitet, 2008)
    The possible presence of periodicity in the terrestrial impact crater data has been discussed in several papers since 1984. The authenticity of this detected periodicity data is controversial. It is possible, however, that real periodicity is present and could be detected from more accurate and complete data. In our study we created simulated different probability distributions for terrestrial impact crater record, that covered completely aperiodic and periodic impact cratering scenarios, as well as two specific combinations of these two cases, with four different impact crater age uncertainties. From these distributions we then generated simulated time series of impact craters with different numbers of craters and tested if the periodicity in the distribution could be detected using the Rayleigh method. Our analysis shows that if only one third of the terrestrial impact craters are caused by periodic cratering events, the detection of a real period in the data is very difficult and probably could not be detected even if better impact crater data became available. If two thirds of the craters are caused by periodic impacts, detection is possible, but would require substantially better data than which is currently available. We conclude that the periodicities reported so far in the impact crater data are not caused by real physical phenomena.
  • Ylöstalo, Otto (2020)
    The decathlon is a track and field event that consists of ten single events, which are performed in the same order during two competitive days. The result from each event is according to the official scoring table transformed into points which are then added together and result in the final score. The aim of this study is to see, what makes an elite decathlete. The individual development in each event is observed. For this study material consisting of all recorded data by decathletes with a personal best of over 8 500 points from year 1970 to 2019 have been used. From the data the best (individual) results made within a decathlon per year was chosen up until the best season. Changes in the decathlete´s profile has been analyzed in four stages (clusters). Changes in the individual development pattern based on the initial level in each event is also observed. The theory part covers the linear mixed-effects model introduced by Laird and Ware. The restricted maximum likelihood method related to the model is deduced in detail. According to the results of the study it seems like the sprint events are of great importance in the decathlon. Especially initially weak 400-meter-runners make a notable progress. However, some initially weak events remain relatively weak compared to the initially stronger.
  • Ylöstalo, Otto (2020)
    Kymmenottelu on yleisurheilulaji, joka koostu kymmenestä yksilölajista, jotka suoritetaan sa-massa järjestyksessä kahden vuorokauden aikana. Kymmenen lajin tulokset pisteytetään viralli-sen pistetaulukon mukaan ja lopputulos on näiden lajien yhteenlaskettu pistemäärä. Tutkielman tavoitteena on tutkia, mikä tekee huippuluokan kymmenottelijaa. Lisäksi tarkastellaan miten henkilökohtaiset kehityskäyrät vertautuvat lajeittain. Aineistona käytetään vuonna 1970-2019 yli 8 500 pisteen kymmenottelijoiden kaudenparhai-den ottelusarjassa tehtyjen tuloksien tietoja. Ottelijaprofiilin muutoksia tutkitaan neljässä tasos-sa. Erikseen tarkastellaan ottelijan henkilökohtainen kehitys lajeittain ja näiden mahdollisia ero-ja. Teoriaosassa käsitellään Lairdin ja Waren lineaarinen sekamalli (LME malli) sekä siihen liittyvä rajoitettu suuremman uskottavuuden menetelmää (REML). Tutkielman tuloksien valossa vaikuttaa siltä, että kymmenottelussa pikajuoksulajit ovat tär-keimmässä roolissa. Varsinkin lähtökohtaisesti heikoille 400 metrin juoksijoille kehitys on suu-ri. Kymmenottelijan profiilissa on havaittavissa, että tietyt lähtökohtaisesti heikot lajit pysyvät suhteellisen heikkona verrattuna muihin.