On March 9, 1998 a Cooperation Agreement was signed by five parties: the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters (Helsinki), the Finnish Literature Society (Helsinki), the Kalevala Society (Helsinki), the Alfred Kordelin Foundation (Helsinki) and the University of Turku. The Agreement establishes as a tool of their cooperation the Kalevala Institute in the field of “comparative research on epics", as the permanent attribute after the name of the Institute reads. The field may sound narrow but in daily work it will expand to cover international publication activities in folkloristics and neighbouring disciplines, the planning of scholarly training courses, the creation and maintenance of various scholarly networks, the organising of conferences and the initiation of international and domestic research cooperation.


A national coalition of several scientific societies and universities in the creation of a research unit at a university is a rather unique manoeuvre but may be taken as a sign of a need to pool limited resources and pave the way for better international research information. That the University of Turku was chosen to host the Institute is the outcome of many factors, such as the positive attitude of the University administration, the Department of Cultural Studies and the Faculty of Humanities, and the existence of the project “Kalevala and Comparative Research on Epics" and its valuable field materials at Turku University since 1990.


Until early 2004, The Kalevala Institute hosted the editorial office of FF Communications (founded 1910, edited at the University of Turku since 1963) and FF Network (founded 1991). The editorialship of these publications is now at the University of Helsinki (see the web pages for FF Communications and FF Network Archive).


11.06.2009 14:36 Ilmari Vakkala