Erja Kettunen-Matilainen profile picture
Senior Research Fellow, Economic Geography
Docent, Department of Marketing and International Business
D.Sc. (Econ. & Bus.Adm.)
PROJECT Good and bad palm oil (Kone Foundation, 2023-2027)


+358 40 577 1537
Rehtorinpellonkatu 3

Areas of expertise

EU-Asia trade
Trade policy
Sustainable development
Asian business environments
International trade
Free trade agreements
Responsible society
Southeast Asia
Regional economic integration


PI of Kone Foundation funded project Good and bad palm oil. Food security, paradigm shift and stakeholder negotiations in Indonesia and the EU (2023-2027) | University of Turku (; Guest Researcher, Nordic Institute of Asian Studies NIAS, University of Copenhagen, April 2023; Visiting Scholar, Ca'Foscari University of Venice, Oct 2022; Affiliated Researcher, TSE 2019-2021; Associate Professor, University of Gothenburg 2019; Senior Research Fellow, CCR 2017-2018; Research Manager, Aalto University School of Business 2006-2018; Visiting researcher, University of Gothenburg 2011; Researcher, Helsinki School of Economics 2005-2006. Research visits: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies; Institute of Southeast Asian Studies Singapore. Academic fieldwork in Japan, S.Korea, Thailand, China, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia.

Title of Docent, University of Turku, Economic Geography.

Dr.Sc.(Econ.); Lic.Sc.(Econ.); M.Sc.(Econ.), Helsinki School of Economics, Economic Geography.

Academic activities:

Board member, Geographical Society of Finland, 2023-

Board member (Aalto University representative), Finnish University Network for Asian Studies 2010-2016

Board member, Doctoral Programme of Contemporary Asian Studies, former Finnish Graduate School of Contemporary Asian Studies 2005-2013

Member of Doctoral Committee, Examiner of Doctoral thesis, Examiner of Licentiate theses; Sweden and Finland

Board member, Nordic Association for Southeast Asian Studies 1995-2004

Co-organizer of Understanding Korea symposium, University of Helsinki 2018 

Co-organizer of symposia at Nordic Centre, Fudan University, Shanghai 2007, 2011

Book editor, Southeast Asia: Economy, Environment and Society [in Finnish], Gaudeamus 2019 

Societal activities:

President, Finland-Republic of Korea Association 2023-, Vice President 2018-2022, Board member 2017- 

Member (Aalto University representative), Finland-ASEAN Trade Association 2008-2016

Chairman of the Board, Finland-Malaysia Association 2001-2006, Board member 1997-2010


MJO4 Vastuullisen liiketoiminnan eettiset kysymykset (coordinator and teacher)

TM1 Yritys- ja markkinointimaantiede (teacher)

TM37 Kansainvälisen kaupan maantiede (responsible teacher)

TMS31/KVS33 Global trade networks and trade policies in Asia (responsible teacher)

TMJ Economic geography doctoral seminars (teacher)

Previous: Organizer and lecturer of several Master's and Bachelor's level courses at University of Gothenburg 2019; Finnish University Network for Asian Studies 2007-2018; Community of European Management Schools CEMS 2007-2008; Helsinki School of Economics 1995-2008. Organizer of a Nordic PhD course on Asia 2012. Topics: Business in East and Southeast Asia; Economic geography of Asia; Economic integration in the EU; Economic geography of EU; Trade and and Asia. 

Supervised ca. 20 M.Sc. theses in Finland and Sweden. 

2nd supervisor of Doctoral thesis, Kari Mäkeläinen, TSE.

Visiting lecturer in Finland, Sweden, Japan.


Good and bad palm oil; Sustainable food trade: the case of Finnish export to China (intl collaboration); Employment, diversity and inclusion in Japan and Finland (intl coll); European Green deal and Circular economy; Finland-China rail transports (intl coll); EU-South Korea relations (intl coll); The EU’s Free Trade Agreements in Asia and responsible business (intl coll); Innovation Districts in Emerging and Advanced Economies (IDeaS); China’s Belt and Road Initiative and trade governance; The participation of Finns in 18th Century Swedish East India Company; Edited book Southeast Asia – Economy, Environment and Society [in Finnish].


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