Päivi Leinonen profile picture
Open University and Continuous Learning
Project Researcher, Study of Cultures
Teacher, Open University and Continuous Learning
MA, doctoral student


Areas of expertise

built environment
urban areas
suburban areas
visual ethnography


I began my doctoral studies in 2017 in European Ethnology department. I got my master’s degree there in 2008. Before my university studies I had also completed studies in building restauration. The themes of built environment have been in the center of my interests throughout my academic career. I have also dealt with them in my work as freelance writer and in various communication projects.


The topic of my research is experiencing the suburban environment, emphasizing the visual landscape. My special interest is in the areas built in 1970’s in Finland, in the period of intensive urbanization.  The apartment buildings were built fast in the outskirts of cities, and the result has been frequently criticized. The residents’ experience, though, is many-sided. Former studies of the Finnish suburban areas have often focused on the social relations or functional environment. In my research I ask what is the aesthetic value of the suburban landscape. What kind of tones do the lived experiences and memories add to the grey concrete walls? 


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