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Grants and awards

The City of Helsinki grants three types of annual monetary awards related to science or intended for academic studies: research grants, the Scientific Award and awards for academic theses.

City of Helsinki Research Grants

The City of Helsinki Research Grants are intended for post-graduate students with a Master’s or equivalent degree, working on doctoral or licentiate theses.  Junior post doc researchers are also encouraged to apply.

The criteria for awarding the grant are the scientific quality of the research plan, its feasibility and the significance of the research topic for the City of Helsinki.

Grants may be awarded for research focusing on:

  • issues related to urbanisation and its effects,
  • City economy and preconditions for business operations,
  • organisation and evaluation of services produced or ordered by the city,
  • living environment, well-being, history and urban life in Helsinki, or
  • issues related to economic and cultural dynamism and internationalisation in Helsinki
  • The city´s recovery from the social, economic and/or health crisis (how to turn the crisis into opportunity).

Please click here for the recipients of the 2022 research grants. The next call for proposals for the City of Helsinki Research Grants will be in 2023. 

For further information, contact research director Katja Vilkama, tel. 050-4028 766

Awards for undergraduate theses

On Friday, 17 December 2021, the City of Helsinki gave recognition awards to ten authors of excellent Helsinki-related theses.
The thesis award is granted to theses whose topic is related to Helsinki, Helsinki residents or the city’s own services. The city aims to reward theses from several disciplines. This year, each award was worth €400.

– With the thesis award, we want to encourage students to study Helsinki and current phenomena related to urban development from the perspectives of various disciplines. This year, we were delighted to receive 26 proposals from various disciplines that met the application criteria, says Katja Vilkama, Research Director at the Urban Research and Statistics Unit of the Helsinki City Executive Office.

The criteria for the awards are the quality of the thesis, a link to Helsinki and the grade awarded by the university. In addition, an innovative approach and new perspectives are appreciated. The thesis awards have been granted since 1992.
This year’s thesis awards were received by the following people:

Eva Granholm: “Vill du ha lite kakao?”: en studie om unga omsorgsgivares skolvardag, Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki
Lauri Grünthal: Musiikki ja monialainen oppiminen. Yläkoulun oppilaiden kokemuksia monialaisesta oppimiskokonaisuudesta ja musiikin oppimisesta sen osana (Music and multidisciplinary learning. Secondary school pupils’ experiences of the multidisciplinary learning module and learning music as part of it), Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts Helsinki
Felix Hallikainen: Helsingin seudun lasten ja nuorten liikkumistavat arkipäivän matkoilla (Daily transport modes of children and young people in the Helsinki region), School of Engineering, Aalto University
Nele Korhonen: Simple lifestyles in urban milieus: A qualitative study of voluntary simplicity in a city, School of Engineering, Aalto University
Merilla Laitinen: Lasten työssäkäynti Helsingissä 1900–1920 (Employment of children in Helsinki in 1900–1920), Faculty of Arts, University of Helsinki
Helena Laukkoski: Oopperatalohanke Helsingin Sanomissa 1964–1987: julkisen keskustelun kehitys ja suhde Suomen kulttuuripolitiikkaan (Opera House project in Helsingin Sanomat in 1964–1987: development of public discourse and relationship with Finnish cultural policy), Faculty of Arts, University of Helsinki
Jarrod Luxton: Prioritisation of Nature-based Solutions in Urban Catchments, School of Engineering, Aalto University
Jasmiina Myllys: Airbnb:n mahdolliset vaikutukset Helsingin vuokra-asuntomarkkinoihin: vuokra-aukkoteorian näkökulma (Possible effects of Airbnb on the rental housing market in Helsinki: a rent-gap theory perspective), Faculty of Science, University of Helsinki
Mathew Page: Agent-based models as a tool for exploring complex segregation processes. Simulating scenarios of residential segregation in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, Faculty of Science, University of Helsinki
Jenni Passoja: “Se menee niin laajalle se työ, mitä me tehään, et se on niitten nuorten elämää…” Tarkastelussa kunnallinen nuorisotyö diskursiivisena käytäntönä (“The work we do is so far-reaching that it’s part of the young people’s lives…” Municipal youth work as a discursive practice), Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki

For further information, you can contact research director Katja Vilkama, tel. +358 (0)9 310 78396, e-mail: 

The City of Helsinki Scientific Award

The City of Helsinki Scientific Award for 2022 has been presented to Professor Katariina Salmela-Aro
The Scientific Award is granted as recognition for important scientific work carried out in Helsinki or by an academic with a background in Helsinki. The Scientific Award is EUR 10,000, and it is awarded in May/June.

Previous recipients:
2021 - Associate professor Saana Svärd
2020 - Professor Satu Mustjoki
2019  - Professor Terhi Ainiala
2018 - Academician Markku Kulmala 
2017 - Professor Katri Räikkönen-Talvitie
2016 - Professor Aarno Palotie 
2015 - Professor Maarit Karppinen
2014 - Professor Markku Kivinen
2013 - Professor Hannes Lohi
2012 - Professor Susann Vihma
2011 - Professor Matti Pohjola
2010 - Professor Antti Kupiainen

23.06.2022 15:40