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Pia Nykänen


Department of Philosophy, Linguistics, Theory of
Visiting address
Renströmsgatan 6
41255 Göteborg
Postal address
Box 200
40530 Göteborg

About Pia Nykänen

I was born in 1970 and have lived in Mölndal since 2008. My academic education is mainly in practical philosophy, comparative literature, art history, and two years of literary composition at Valand Academy.

Research I have a doctoral degree in practical philosophy with the dissertation Fundamental values, democracy and tolerance. On public school education in a multicultural society. My chief research interest and most of my scholarly works proceed from a stance of moral and political philosophy, with a focus on issues of upbringing and education.

From September 2016 to September 2018 I was a Flexit researcher at Råd & Stöd in Linköping municipality as part of a three-year project which will run until September 2019. My project is entitled Evidence-based Practice, Shared Decision-Making and Performance in Social Services and is financed by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond.


In 2001–2016 I taught at the following departments at Gothenburg University: Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science, the former Department of Pedagogics and Didactics, the former Department of History of Ideas and Theory of Science, and the Unit for Pedagogical Development and Interactive Learning. I have taught several different courses in teacher training, in philosophy with courses on normative ethics, political philosophy and aesthetics, and courses to qualify as university teachers.

I have supervised students both in discipline-specific courses in philosophy and pedagogy and in teacher training, and I have been responsible for leading and coordinating various courses, large and small, at different levels.

Cooperation External assignments include various lectures on ethics and fundamental values for Krus (Competence Council for Development in the State), DISI (Diversity in the Swedish Industry), Blekinge County Administration, Gothenburg City Office, etc. Together with a colleague I have also led a training programme in analytical thinking for one of Gothenburg’s neighbourhood committees.

As part of my Flexit position 2016–2019 I also give lectures to employees in social services, on issues of ethics and values and on evidence-based practice, user participation, and shared decision-making. In this field I have also undertaken assignments for the National Board of Health and Welfare and am at present (2018–2019) doing an assignment for the Swedish Agency for Health Technology Assessment and Assessment of Social Services.

Miscellaneous/leadership assignments From 1 January 2015 to 30 June 2016 I was deputy head of department with special responsibility for post-graduate study at the Department of Education, Communication and Learning and subsequently assistant head of department with the same responsibility until September 2016.