The first university in Finland, Academia Aboensis, was established in Turku in 1640 by Christina, the Queen of Sweden and Finland. In 1828, following the Great Fire of Turku, the university was transferred to Helsinki, the new capital of the country, which at the time belonged to the Russian Empire. Finlands achievement of independence in 1917 gave new impetus to aspirations for getting the University in Turku again. This was succeeded after a huge private campaign. Thus the first Finnish University was founded in Turku in 1920. The University of Turku was a private foundation until 1974, when the ownership of the university was transferred to the State.
The University of Turku has 6 faculties, 10 special units, 14 graduate schools. In 2000 total number of students was 16 670 enrolled in BA, MA and doctoral programs. Total staff amounted to 2543 persons. Most of the research carried out at the University is pure research, but many departments are involved in applied research and development. Examples of the extensive range of the advanced research currently being undertaken at the University of Turku are among others the arts and cultural studies, welfare research and the problems relating to education and training, working life and learning etc.
The Department of Sociology is the oldest sociology department in Finland. It has been established in the year 1926. The Department of Sociology is a part of the faculty of social sciences. The faculty constitutes a community of almost two thousands persons, whose academic members – teachers and researches – respond to the challenges of our time by analysing its social phenomena. The mission the Department of Sociology at Turku University is to generate new information and understanding through research, and to provide high-quality teaching. Today the department is one of the biggest in the country. Besides the basic research dealing with general theoretical and methodological issues of sociology, the main fields of research are the following: cultural change, education, environmental questions, housing, social problems, social stratification and social mobility, sociology of work. Examples of ongoing research are e.g. Drugs in the free-time culture, Good administration, Non-vertical aspects of social stratification, Information society and organizational change, Comparative study of Nordic housing policies. In the year 2002 external research funding was 39%.
University of Turku
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