October 1998             


New Director for the Institute appointed

Dr. Panu Minkkinen, a philosopher of law, has been appointed the next Director of the Finnish Institute. He will take up his his three-year appointment at the beginning of February, having previously been working as a research fellow at Birkbeck College, University of London.

Minkkinen's dissertation, Thinking without Desire. A First Philosophy of Law, will be published in Britain by Hart Publishing (Oxford) in 1999. The dissertation, written in English, was, according to Minkkinen, "an attempt to evaluate the reception of what is known as ‘Continental Philosophy’ within the philosophy of law".

Minkkinen’s academic and cultural interests are wide-ranging. In his earlier career as a teacher and researcher in criminal law he concentrated on issues such as politically motivated street crime, the concept of criminal liability, the treatment of mentally insane offenders and cultural representations of crime. After an academic year at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris in 1989-1990, Minkkinen’s research interests were redirected into a distinctly philosophical direction.

The new Director’s fields of expertise in the area of culture are music, modern literature, cinema and photography. He is also a keen follower of popular culture and has written a book on the subject. Minkkinen says that he is still fascinated by the colour of ‘street life’. "This is one aspect of British culture that I find compelling", he adds.

Minkkinen’s predecessor has been Dr. Henrik Stenius who will return to his post at the University of Helsinki.

See Panu Minkkinen's CV

Index of back issues