Fredriika Jakola


Postdoctoral researcher


I am a human geographer with a specialization in the fields of regional development and border studies. Currently I study the relationship between regional differentation and inclusion of municipalities in European Union's Structural Funds (European Regional Development Fund and European Social Fund) in the context of Finland.

In my PhD research I studied how the local institutional conditions (formal and informal institutions) affect policy transfer processes and regional development paths in the context of Finnish-Swedish border municipalities. In my research I've been particularly interested in the role of "unwritten" informal institutions (norms, customs, habits, identity) in political-economic processes. Theoretically my research draws mainly from institutional economic geography, geographical political economy, cross-border studies, and policy transfer literature.


Research interests

  • Development of border regions
  • Dynamics between EU- and state-led regional policies and municipal strategies
  • Institutional conditions and regional development
  • Trust and power relations in regional development
  • Cultural Political Economy
  • Policy transfer
  • Tornio Valley


Research groups

  • RELATE - CoE (
  • Regional Development and Regional Policy

Selected publications

  • Jakola, Fredriika (2016) Borders, planning and policy transfer : historical transformation of development discourses in the Finnish Torne Valley. - European planning studies 24 (10), 1806-1824 . [Original]
  • Jakola, Fredriika (2018) Local responses to state-led municipal reform in the Finnish-Swedish border region: conflicting development discourses, culture and institutions. - Fennia : International Journal of Geography 196 (2), 137-153 . [Original] [Self-archived]
  • Jakola, Fredriika; Prokkola, Eeva-Kaisa (2018) Trust Building or Vested Interest? Social Capital Processes of Cross-Border Co-Operation in the Border Towns of Tornio and Haparanda. - Tijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie 109 (2), 224-238 . [Original]
  • Prokkola, Eeva-Kaisa; Zimmerbauer, Kaj; Jakola, Fredriika (2015) Performance of regional identity in the implementation of European cross-border initiatives. - European Urban and Regional Studies 22 (1), 104-117 . [Original]