The Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Helsinki will confer honorary doctorates on six prominent figures from academia, culture and various sectors of society. They are activist Ludmilla Alexeeva, professor Mahzarin Banaji, professor Kenneth Binmore, activist Kalle Könkkölä, professor Douglas Maynard and professor emeritus Evert Vedung. An honorary doctorate is the highest form of recognition awarded by the Faculty.
Honorary doctorates in the Conferment Ceremony of 2016:
Ludmilla Alexeeva is a renowned and awarded Russian democracy and freedom of speech activist. She is one of the founders of the Moscow Helsinki Group established in 1976. She returned to Russia after the dissolution of the Soviet Union and at the age of 88 continues her work for a democratic Russia.
Mahzarin Banaji is a professor of social ethics at Harvard University. Born and raised in India, she has primarily studied social attitudes and beliefs in adults and children. She has received numerous awards and recognitions for her research in experimental social psychology as well as her teaching. She is one of the foremost researchers of implicit attitudes and beliefs in the world.
Kenneth Binmore is a British mathematician, economist, and game theorist. He is a Professor Emeritus of Economics at University College London (UCL) and a Visiting Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Bristol, and he has held the Chair of Mathematics at the London School of Economics. Mr. Binmore is known for his groundbreaking work on bargaining theory and for his major contributions in the field of political and moral philosophy.
Kalle Könkkölä is a long-time activist, the first chairperson of the Green League and a former member of the Finnish Parliament. He is the executive director of the Threshold association which campaigns for greater rights and accessibility for disabled people. He had a central role in obtaining the funding necessary for establishing the Chair of Disability Research at the University of Helsinki and in founding the Abilis Foundation that supports the activities of persons with disabilities in developing countries.
Douglas Maynard is internationally renowned for his work on sociological traditions of ethnomethodology and conversation analysis. He has also studied conversations and language in a variety of social settings from an ethnographic point of view. He is a professor at one of the top ranking departments of sociology in the world at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is also the president of the International Society of Conversation Analysis.
Evert Vedung is Emeritus Professor of Political Science, especially housing policy, at Uppsala University. His subject areas are implementation, policy instruments and evaluation of public policy (esp. urban, environmental and energy policy), EU regional and innovation policy, cross-sectoral initiatives, and social work. Mr. Vedung has been a visiting scholar at numerous universities worldwide, including the University of Helsinki in 1999-2008.