University Management



Jouko Niinimäki

Doctor of Technology Jouko Niinimäki has been the Rector of the University since 1 January 2015.

Niinimäki was appointed Professor of Fibre and Particle Engineering in 2000. During 2000–2014 he operated as the head of a Fibre and Particle Engineering research group. He worked as Dean of the Faculty of Technology in 2014.

Niinimäki matriculated as a Doctor of Technology in the University of Oulu in 1998. He graduated as Master of Science in Technology in 1993.



Executive Assistant
Annika Giavedoni

Tel. 0294 484071

Vice Rector - Research

Taina Pihlajaniemi

Vice Rector for Research is, for her second term, Doctor of Medicine and Surgery Taina Pihlajaniemi. The units of responsibility of the Vice Rector for Research are the Faculties of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Sciences, and Medicine.

Pihlajaniemi acted as the first Director of Biocenter Finland in 2006–2007. In 1996–2009 she was Scientific Director of Biocenter Oulu, as well as Director of the Graduate School. The Cell-Extracellular Matrix Research unit directed by Pihlajaniemi,  which consisted of six research groups in the University of Oulu, was nominated by the Academy of Finland as a Centre of Excellence for 2012–2017.

Pihlajaniemi graduated as Doctor of Medicine from the University of Oulu in 1987. She was appointed Professor of Medical Biochemistry in 1990.

Vice Rector - Education


Helka-Liisa Hentilä

Vice Rector for Education is Architect, Doctor of Science Helka-Liisa Hentilä. Vice Rector for Education is responsible for the quality and improvement of education activities. The units of responsibility of the Vice Rector are the faculties of Humanities and Education, Oulu School of Architecture, and Oulu Business School.

Hentilä acted as Dean of the Oulu School of Architecture in 2014–2015, and Dean of Education of the Faculty of Technology in 2010–2013. She was the Director of the Department of Architecture in 2006–2013. Hentilä has been Professor in Urban Design and Planning from 2003.

Hentilä graduated from Kungliga tekniska högskolan in Stockholm in 1993.


Vice Rector - Cooperation Affairs

Arto Maaninen

Vice Rector for Co-operation is Doctor of Philosophy (chemistry), Adjunct professor Arto Maaninen. Vice Rector for Co-operation is responsible of university’s relations to other universities and colleges, research organizations and companies. The units of responsibility of the Vice Rector are the faculties of technology and information technology and electrical engineering. He is also responsible of separate university units in Kajaani and Kokkola.

Maaninen worked at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland during 2002–2017: in 2010–2013 as VP Technology, 2013–2016 as VP Operations and 2016–2017 as VP Research. Maaninen has also worked as research professor at VTT.

Maaninen graduated as Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Oulu in 1999.


Administrative Director

Essi Kiuru

The Administrative Director assists the Rector in leading the University, making initiatives for renewing the activities of the University, especially in management, organization and work processes. The Administrative Director is in charge of the University Services.



Executive Assistant
Päivi Nylund

Tel. 0294 482905

Human Resources Director

Jarmo Okkonen

Human Resources Director is responsible for the definitions of policy in human resources management, in accordance with the University strategy. The Director's area of responsibility includes the development of recruiting, managing, knowhow and well-being of personnel. The Director works in close cooperation with the Unviersity's management, superiors and personnel representatives.

Strategy Director

Charlotta Collén

The Strategy Director is responsible for implementing the University's strategy. In addition, the job description includes evidence-based decision-making, aligning the university's international affairs, quality assurance, and managing the Tellus Innovation Arena. The Strategy Director is assisted by the Unit for Strategy and Science Policy (STY).


Chief Financial Officer

Pekka Riuttanen

Chief Financial Officer is responsible for the internal and external accounting of the University, its quality and its development.


Communications Director

Marja Jokinen

Communications Director is responsible for the strategic planning, realization and development of the external and internal communications and marketing of the University. A central task of the Director is improving the business image and the business and media relations of the University.


Last updated: 16.1.2020