Research Community INSPIRES (INStitutions and PractIces of new liteRaciES)

Traditionally literacy research has been conducted in isolation within disciplines such as psycholinguistics, education, and psychology. Moreover, literacies have been investigated as instrumental skills of individuals rather than as practices in a social context, taking into account both historical continuities and discontinuities in cultural forms of life.

INSPIRES aims at generating interdisciplinary knowledge about new literacies through an integrative approach to Information and Communication Studies, Educational Sciences, and Computer Science. Interdisciplinary research on new literacies is demanded to get a grasp of this complex, multidimensional phenomenon, including both new literacy practices and new ways of understanding the concept of literacies.

The purpose of INSPIRES is to introduce new theoretical knowledge, novel methodologies and elaborated methods by examining the literacy practices of institutions of media, schools, homes, the memory functions of society (libraries, archives, museums) and health care, and in the everyday lives of citizens.

INSPIRES examines new literacies by combining the viewpoints of four research groups (RGs). Research from each perspective has contributed to our current understanding of literacies.

Health Information Mastering (HIM-Oulu&Åbo) focuses on investigating individuals´ information literacy and practices in different contexts, health in particular. 

Senior Scholars

Huotari Maija-Leena, PhD, professor, Principal Investigator

Enwald Heidi, PhD

Ek Stefan, PhD

Eriksson-Backa Kristina, PhD

Hirvonen Noora, PhD

Huvila Isto, PhD, professor

Känsäkoski Helena, PhD

Niemelä Raimo, PhD

Doctoral Students

Karjalainen Riitta-Liisa, MEd

Huhta Anna-Maija, MA

Pohjanen Aira, MA


Interactive Spaces (iSpaces) designs interactive, context-aware systems serving people in their everyday environments and in learning literacy.

Senior Scholar

Riekki Jukka, PhD, Principal Investigator

Doctoral Student

Oja Mika, MSc

Research Assistants

Cortes Marta

Mikko Pyykkönen

Literacies and Empowered Communities (LECO) investigates changes in the public sphere related to media.

Senior Scholars

Karvonen Erkki, Professor, Principal Investigator

Kortelainen Terttu, PhD

Suominen Vesa, PhD

Post doc –researchers

Kurttila-Matero Eeva, PhD

Suorsa Anna, PhD

Doctoral Students

Harju Aki, MA

Innanen Kaisu, MA

Rytinki Markus, MA

New Literacies and Future School (NeLiFu) are interested in investigating literacy pedagogy and practices in the school setting. (Faculty of Education)

Senior Scholars

Korkeamäki Riitta-Liisa, PhD, Principal Investigator

Suvilehto Pirjo, PhD

Post doc –researchers

Palmgren-Neuvonen Laura, PhD

Doctoral Students

Hytönen Marja, M.Ed.

Jokinen Päivi, M.Ed.

Nikula Sirpa-Liisa, M.Ed.

Nygård Tuula, M.Ed.

Rousu Katja, M.Ed.

Tiainen Outi, M.Ed.

Tikkinen Siinamari, M.Ed.

Ukkola Annette, M.Ed.

A Research Community (RC) integrating these perspectives is a response to the demand for interdisciplinary research to study this complex and multidimensional phenomenon. INSPIRES enables holistic investigation more effectively than within isolated studies. Verified theoretical findings contribute to internationally significant research which can be widely implemented to enhance new institutional practices. From 2014 to 2018, the RC will conduct interdisciplinary theoretical and empirical studies, develop new technologies, produce joint publications to be published in high-quality peer-reviewed international and domestic scientific forums, present results at international and national conferences and popularize them. INSPIRES provides doctoral and research-based education for degree students at the University of Oulu and also for in-service education to enhance multi-professionalism. This responds to changing structures of contemporary and future society, including the labor markets.

Selected publications

Riekki, J., Cortés, M., Hytönen, M., Sánchez, I., & Korkeamäki, R-L. (In Press). Touching nametags with NFC phones: a playful approach to learning to read. In Z. Pan et al. (Eds.) Transactions on Edutainment X, LNCS 7775 (pp. 228-242). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag. (In Press)

Hirvonen, N., Enwald, H., Bath, P., Pyky, R., Korpelainen, R. & Huotari, M.-L. (2015) Individual factors affecting preferences for feedback message tactics in the contexts of physical activity. Journal of Health Communication, 20(2), 220-229.

Riekki, J., Cortés, M., Hytönen, M., Sánchez, I., & Korkeamäki, R-L. (In Press). Touching nametags with NFC phones: a playful approach to learning to read. In Z. Pan et al. (Eds.) Transactions on Edutainment X, LNCS 7775 (pp. 228-242). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag. (In Press).

Suorsa Anna (2015) Knowledge creation and play – a phenomenological approach. Journal of Documentation, 71(3).

Känsäkoski Helena (2014) Value creation in childhood obesity care and prevention. - Acta Universitatis Ouluensis. Series B, Humaniora 119. Oulu. Artikkeliväitöskirja.

Suorsa Anna, Huotari Maija-Leena (2014) Knowledge creation and the concept of human being: A phenomenological approach. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 65(5), 1042-1057.

Enwald, Heidi (2013) Tailoring health communication : the perspective of information users' health information behaviour in relation to their physical health status. - Acta Universitatis Ouluensis. Series B, Humaniora 118. Oulu. Doctoral dissertation. 185, [81].

Ahola, R., Pyky, R., Jämsä, T., Mäntysaari, M. Koskimäki, H., Ikäheimo, T.M., Huotari, M.-L., Röning, J., Heikkinen, H. & Korpelainen, R. (2013). Gamified physical activation of young men – a multidisciplinary population-based randomized controlled trial (MOPO study). BMC Public Health 13(1), 32 / MOPO study, 2013. [Online].

Hirvonen, N., Huotari, M.-L., Niemelä, R. & Korpelainen, R. (2012). Information behavior in stages of exercise behavior change. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, JASIST, 63 (9), 1804–1819.

Korkeamäki, R.-L., Dreher, M. J., & Pekkarinen, A. (2012). Finnish preschool and first-grade children’s use of media at home. Human Technology 8 (2), 109-132.

Kortelainen, T. & Katvala, M. (2012). ”Everything is plentiful – except attention”. Attention data of scientific journals on social media tools. Journal of Informetrics 6 (4), 661-668.

Niemelä, R., Huotari, M.-L., & Kortelainen, T. (2012). Enactment and use of information and the media among older adults. Library and Information Science Research (34), 212-219.

Oja, M. & Riekki, J. (2012). Ubiquitous framework for creating and evaluating persuasive applications and games. Doctoral Colloquium in conjunction with the Sixth International Conference on Grid and Pervasive Computing (GPC2011). In M. Rautiainen et al. (Eds.) Grid and Pervasive Computing Workshops, LNCS 7096 (pp. 133-140). Heidelberg: Springer.

Huotari, M.-L., Eriksson-Backa, K., Enwald, H., Askola, K., Känsäkoski, H., Niemelä, R., Hirvonen, N., & Ek, S. (2011). Health information practice and its impact on preventing obesity and metabolic syndrome among people in different age groups: an integrative approach. In P.A. Bath, T. Mettler, D.A. Raptis, & B.A. Sen (Eds.) Proceedings of the 15th International Symposium for Health Information Management Research – ISHIMR 2011 ( pp. 386-397). Zurich: University Hospital, Zurich.

Korkeamäki, R-L. & Dreher, M.J. (2011). Early literacy practices and the Finnish national core curriculum. Journal of Curriculum Studies 43 (1), 109-137.

Mikkola, H., Rahikkala, A., Kumpulainen, K., & Riekki, J. (2011). ActiveAquarium – virtual fish reflecting your physical activity. In Kumpulainen, K. & Toom, A. (Eds.) The Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference of the European Teacher Education Network ETEN (pp. 7-21). Helsinki: University of Helsinki.

Askola, K., Toshimori, A., & Huotari, M.-L. (2010). Cultural differences in the health information environments and practices between Finnish and Japanese university students. Information Research 15(4), paper 451.

Karvonen, E. (2009). Entertainmentization of the European Public Sphere and Politics. In Harrison, Jackie and Bridgette Wessels. (Eds.) Mediating Europe: New Media, Mass Communications and the European Public Sphere (pp. 99-127). Oxford and New York: Berghahn Books.

Turunen, M., Kallinen, A., Sánchez, I., Riekki, J., Hella, J., Olsson, T., Melto, A., Rajaniemi, J.P., Hakulinen, J., Mäkinen, E., Valkama, P., Miettinen, T., Pyykkönen, M., Saloranta, T., Gilman, E., & Raisamo, R. (2009). Multimodal interaction with speech and physical touch interface in a media center application. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Advances in Computer Enterntainment Technology (ACE 2009) (pp.19-26). New York: ACM.

Riekki, J., Salminen, T., & Alakärppä, I. (2006). Requesting pervasive services by touching RFID tags. IEEE Pervasive Computing, 5(1), 40-46.

Mazzoni, S.A., Gambrell, L B., & Korkeamäki, R.-L. (1999). Cross-cultural perspective of early literacy motivation. Reading psychology. An International Quarterly 20 (3), 237-253.


Viimeksi päivitetty: 8.9.2017