“My family loves this city” – Dr. Masafumi Fujino

Masafumi Fujino has made his career in one of the largest university of Japan, the Nihon University in Tokyo. Fujino has so far conducted research according to the Japanese practice where the research on accounting aims at practical applications without further discussion on their theoretical implications.

– In Japan, some researchers emphasise the contribution to management practice. This contribution is very important but sometimes this approach leads to a narrow focus on only discovering something “new”. I am more interested in finding and developing theoretical implications from practical matters. I came here to learn how to build my research on accounting from a theory-driven perspective.

The staff at the Department of Accounting and Finance of Turku School of Economics has welcomed the visiting post doc researcher warmly. Daily interaction and the encounter of two different research traditions have enable Fujino to approach his own research topic from a fresh perspective.

– Here in Turku School of Economics, many staff members have experience on how to theorise empirical materials. I try to find a bridge between the academic theories and the business field. This is a strong point for Turku School of Economics, assesses Fujino.

Family Helps in Adapting to the Finnish Way of Life

Fujino did not want to move to Finland without his family. His wife and 5- and 7-year old daughters came to Turku with him. The family received great help from the University's International Staff Services as well as the Department of Accounting and Finance in coping with practical matters and adapting to the cultural differences.

In addition to helping the family with the living arrangements, the International Staff Services offered Fujino a place in the Buddy Programme.

 – The Staff Services appointed a buddy, a person who kindly provided my family and me with information on general things, such as weather, food, language, social roles, and what’s considered normal in Finland. This was very helpful for adjusting to the new country, for example in regards to arranging day care and school for our children, thanks Fujino.

A contact person is arranged to international staff if they need one. Masafumi Fujino's contact person has become a significant figure in his family's life, as she also has small children. Their two families have become fast friends.

– My family spent a Finnish summer holiday with them, which included going to sauna in a summer cottage by a lake. It was a fantastic experience for us.

Maintaining family life has had a great significance for adapting to a foreign country. In part, it helps in meeting local people.

– At the day care and school we meet teachers and other parents, and sometimes we agree to meet them at a park or shopping area. We learn a great deal from them. Children enjoy playing outside with their friends and there are many playgrounds and parks in the city.

Fujino admits that he had doubts about moving to a completely different country. However, the visit has been a positive surprise to the researcher, who hopes he can someday return to Turku to conduct research.

– My family loves this city, but before we moved here I was worried how we could adapt to this different atmosphere. But actually, my worries turned out of to be groundless. Now, it might be a struggle to go back to busy Tokyo, laughs Fujino.

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