Research Seminar in Legal Studies

About Seminar

The annual Research Seminar of Faculty of Law at the University of Lapland is a platform for the whole research community, from professors to students. Plenum guest speakers this year are Rob van den Hoven van Genderen (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), Tuomas Hupli (University of Turku), Natalia Ollus (HEUNI) and Niko Soininen (University of Helsinki).
In an interview, the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu once came to the following conclusion “I think sociology should define its social demand and functions on its own”. This requires continuous and autonomous critical exploration of one’s own principles: reflexivity; and completely setting aside the question about what or whom one should serve, said Bourdieu. Bourdieu’s invitation to reflexivity suits just as well in legal research, if not even better.

In the spirit of Bourdieu, we invite our researchers to scientific self-scrutiny; it is again the time to bring some clarity to our own usefulness and tasks in society. This time the theme is Reflexivity and Responsiveness in the Law. In other words, we will be discussing the law in a functioning society.


The seminar and its theme are suitable for any stage of the research career and for any field of the law. For example, you can just tell about state of affairs in your field or about the subject of your research, but it would be great if you could give examples or other ways of showing the relationship between the legal system and the rest of society.

As a whole, the concern of the research seminar is the ability of the legal system, not only to keep with social development, but also to defend its own principles, values and goals, to the language of which the new problems should be translated. 

Guidelines for abstract and presentation

  • Abstract should include title of the paper and name of the author. Abstract summarizes shortly the subject of research, research question and your perspective on subject (e.g. coherence of judicial system, legal position of individual, realization of political aims, equity, historical change, possibilities of future, European integration, globalization etc.)
  • Try to write and speak from a perspective that might be generally interesting and think what your research subject’s broader societal or cultural significance is.
  • In the end and beginning, ask yourself what could be said about interdependencies between law and society based on your subject.
  • Consider the ways in which your research could make visible the efforts of the legal system to respond to individual events or broader trends in society.
  • In what ways could your research illuminate the efforts of the legal system to preserve important legal values (legitimacy, equality, freedom etc.) under the pressure of societal change?


Please register your participation on 18 February at latest through email to [email protected]
Please note that presentation does not bind you to the work of that group throughout the seminar, but you can choose freely what program you are participating in.

1) Presentation in a working group

  • Please mention in which group you want to present and whether you will be submitting a paper.
  • Submit an abstract of 100 to 200 words with your registration. Abstract should summarize the paper’s research problem and, for example, the starting points and goals for the work. The abstracts will be published on the seminar website after the end of the registration period.
  • Please mention your name, e-mail address and on how many days you will be attending.
  • If you want your paper to be shared with other participants in the working group, please send it to the team leader by March 4th.
If you do not present a paper in a working group (for example, if you are not planning to complete Theory or Method as PhD student by participation) and only keep the presentation, please submit an abstract anyway.
The organizing body may suggest moving your presentation to another working group other than what is stated in the announcement. In this case, the organizers will contact you personally.

2) Participation without presentation

If you participate without presentation, please submit registration anyway. In this case, only include your name, e-mail address and information on how many days you will be attending.

Information and contacts

More information about the Research Seminar Visit Here.
The seminar is open to anyone interested and participants from other faculties are also welcome. 
Please address your inquiries to Iiris Kestilä, [email protected]
The person responsible for the seminar on the whole is Samuli Hurri, [email protected]