Jenni Tikkanen profile picture
University Lecturer, Department of Education
Postdoctoral Fellow


+358 29 450 2488
+358 50 338 2852
Assistentinkatu 5

Areas of expertise

youth research
education policy
comparative education
sociology of education
statistical analysis
structural equation modelling
life course research


I am a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Turku Institute for Advanced Studies (TIAS) research collegium and a Visiting Research Fellow in the Inequalities, Interventions, and New Welfare State (INVEST) research flagship of the Academy of Finland. My main research interests are related to sociology of education, youth studies, life course research, and international comparative education. In my most recent research, including my doctoral dissertation, I have focused on youth trajectories, educational and societal segregation, and the relations of social change and social reproduction.

In the TIAS collegium, my postdoctoral research project, which is titled ‘Riding High or Hanging on for Dear Life? Reflexivity, Opportunity Structures, and the Formation of Young People’s Life Courses and Biographies in Times of Risk and Uncertainty’, examines how the individualisation of social inequalities, privatisation of risks, and gendered nature of individualisation materialise in ‘objective’ life courses and ‘subjective’ biographies of young people in Finland, Europe, and Australia. I approach the topic by examining the interplay of individual reflexivity and the surrounding opportunity structures.

In addition, I participate actively in two further international research projects: International Study of City Youth (ISCY; and Education Systems, Learning and Social Change (EduSyS; ISCY is a comparative, longitudinal study focusing on understanding how education systems prepare young people to life beyond school and how young people’s school experiences and achievements influence their careers and life more broadly. EduSys is a longitudinal mixed methods study analysing young people's educational and occupational pathways, particularly from the viewpoint of their skills development and choices made in different transition points in their social contexts.


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