Silja Keva profile picture
University Teacher, Centre for East Asian Studies
VTT, Doctor of Social Sciences


+358 29 450 3055
+358 50 308 9243
Assistentinkatu 7

Areas of expertise

Japanese society and politics
Diet of Japan
Parliamentary diplomacy
Asia-Europe relations
Asia-Europe meeting ASEM
Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership (ASEP)​
International Parliamentary Institutions (IPIs)


I work as a University Teacher at the Centre for East Asian Studies, teaching and researching contemporary Japan. I'm the Academic Director for the Minor in East Asian Studies at CEAS. My research interests include Japanese politics and international relations, parliamentary diplomacy etc.
I have studied Contemporary History, Japanese and East Asian Studies at the Universities of Turku and Helsinki and the Kansai Gaidai University in Japan. In 2005-6 I worked as a research at the Helsinki University Network for European Studies in a Finnish-Japanese study on the Asia-Europe Meeting process. In 2006 worked in the ASEM6 Summit Secretariat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, helping to organise the ASEM6 Summit in Helsinki. 
I have strong experience and pedagogical and technical skills in online teaching. I also work for the Finnish University Network for Asian Studies ( in teaching, planning and communication activities.

Professional experience: 

  • University Teacher, Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Turku, (2009 – present) 
  • Specially Appointed Assistant Professor, Osaka University, affiliation 1.1-30.6.2018, full-time work in Osaka 1-28.2.2018.
  • Coordinator, Finnish University Network for Asian Studies, University of Turku (2013) 
  •  Planning Officer, Finnish University Network for Asian Studies, University of Turku (2006 – 2009 ) 
  • Temporary Adviser (Project Assistant), Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, ASEM6 Secretariat (2006)
  • Researcher, Network for European Studies, University of Helsinki (2005 – 2006)

  • Other positions: 
  • Editor of Studies on Contemporary East Asia, a publication series of the Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Turku, Finland.
  • Academic Director of Minor in East Asian Studies, Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Turku.
  • Vice-Chair of the Teaching Skills Committee, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Turku
  • Member of the Finnish delegation in the Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership process, 2014

  • Degrees: 
  • Doctor of Social Sciences (Asian Studies), University of Turku 22.8.2019.
  • Master of Social Sciences, University of Turku 2003

  • Other courses: 
  • Supervision of research projects (5 ECTS), University of Turku, 2019
  • University Pedagogics (25 ECTS), University of Turku, 2013 - 2014, 2021-2022 
  • TieVie - Expert Training Programme 2007 – 2008 (use of ICT in education) 
  • Exchange student at Kansai Gaidai University, Osaka, Japan (5 months), 2002 
  • Japanese Language Program for Postgraduate Students (2-month course), 2001 
  • Asia-Europe Foundation, ASEF University (2 weeks), in 2001


I teach several courses yearly at the Centre for East Asian Studies. Two of these courses are online courses and are offered nationally through the Finnish University Network for Asian Studies for 70-100 students all around Finland. For both classroom and online courses, I try to create inspiring courses, with chances for dialogue among students and with the teacher. In online teaching I plan and teach large-scale courses that are both manageable for the teacher and motivating for the students. 
My MOOC-course Johdatus Itä-Aasiaan [Introduction to East Asia] was awarded the Course of the Year title in 2022 by the University of Turku and the Student Union of the University of Turku.

Bachelor level:

  • Johdatus Itä-Aasiaan [Introduction to East Asia] (3 ECTS) (online course)
  • Japanese History and Contemporary Japan (5 ECTS)
  • East Asian Media Essay: China, Japan and Korea (2-3 ECTS) (online course) 

  • Master's level:
  • Contemporary Japanese Politics and Society (5 ECTS) 
  • Academic Skills and Competencies (2 ECTS, co-teaching with colleagues, 1 lecture)
  • Conflict and Cooperation in East Asia (2 ECTS, co-teaching with colleagues, 2 lectures)
  • Master Thesis Seminar (co-teaching)
  • Advanced Country Studies Literature Exam on Japan (2-5 ECTS)
  • Modern Histories of East Asian Countries Literature Exam, Japan (2-5 ECTS)
  • I supervise yearly more than ten Master's thesis on Japan. 


My main research interest is contemporary Japan, especially Japanese politics, foreign policy and the Japanese Diet. I am also interested in Asia-Europe relations, parliamentary diplomacy and parliamentary participation in international and global decision making and norm promotion. 
Here is a list of papers I have presented at academic conferences. 

Papers presented at academic conferences:


War legacy in Japan’s political rhetoric and parliamentary diplomacy. Eisa-Pec 2022 Athens. 3.9.2022.

How does context determine and drive political diplomatic dialogue – EU-Japan Parliamentary Dialogue on Shared Values. EAJS 2021 (online). 27.8.2021.

Japanese Parliamentarians and Japan’s Normative Power Diffusion in the Asia–Europe Dialogue. Paper presented at Eisa-Pec 2021 (online), 15.9.2021.

Diet Members and Japan’s Normative Power. Paper presented at NAJS 2019, University of Turku Finland. 24.5.2019.

Workshop Chair at NAJS 2019 (on politics, nuclear energy and society), University of Turku Finland, 23.5.2019.

“Normative Power and Parliamentarians – The Diet of Japan as a Case.” Paper presented at the Asia-Pacific Studies Seminar, Feb 24, 2018. Osaka University, Japan.

“Domestic actors on the international stage - Japanese Parliamentarians in the Asia-Europe dialogue”. Paper presented at the 15th International Conference of the European Association for Japanese Studies (EAJS), Lisbon, August 30-September 2, 2017.

“The National Diet of Japan and Parliamentary Diplomacy: Japan’s Participation in the Asia-Europe Parliamentary Dialogue”. Paper presented at the Twentieth Asian Studies Conference Japan (ASCJ), ICU Tokyo, July 2-3, 2016.

“Diet of Japan as an international actor: a case study of Japan’s participation in the Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership”. Paper presented at the Asian Studies Days Doctoral Seminar, University of Jyväskylä, August 26, 2016.

 “People’s participation in ASEM – a Focus on the Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership”. Paper presented at the Asian Studies Days Doctoral Seminar, University of Vaasa, October 2, 2015.

“ASEM and the people's involvement: a focus on the Parliamentary Partnership (ASEP)”. A Paper presented at the conference: Asia-Europe Parliaments, Foreign Policy and Transnationalization: Methodological Challenges at the University of Jyväskylä, September 26, 2015.

“Japan in the Asia-Europe Parliamentary Process”. Paper presented at the 11th Conference of the Nordic Association for Study of Contemporary Japanese Society, Lund University, March 6, 2015

“Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership (ASEP) - Just a talking shop or a tool for more participatory Asia-Europe relations?” Paper presented at the academic conference “East Asia and the European Union, strong Economics, weak Politics?”. Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Groeningen, The Netherlands, May 9, 2014.


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