Emilia Palonen works as Senior Researcher in Political Science at the University of Helsinki, as the HEPPsinki research group leader, PI of three projects. UK-trained theorist of hegemony (MA and Ph.D. Essex) and populism with a focus on Central Eastern Europe (BA UCL/SSEES), Palonen has been visiting academic institutions, including Institutes for Advanced Study in Austria, Germany and Hungary. She holds the Finnish academic Title of Docent at the University of Jyväskylä, where she worked in cultural policy and has been involved in research projects on populism and nationalism.
Palonen’s research expertise focuses mainly on Hungary and Finland, but she has also studied EU-Europe related to comparative politics, history and memory, identity, and cultural, local and urban politics (including the European Capitals of Culture and the European Parliamentary Elections). Currently, she studies political meaning-making through social media. She has supervised eight Ph.D. theses on culture, politics, and/or democracy at the UNESCO, in Mexico, Poland and Lithuania, Hungary and Romania. Ukraine, Serbia, and Turkey; and she has served as an opponent for doctoral dissertations in Estonia, the Netherlands and Sweden. Her current students research Finland and Jordania, China and the US, Czech Republic, Hungary and Spain. She is an active science communicator, including election commentary and participatory action research.
Palonen is a chair of the Finnish Political Science Association since 2018-, board member since 2009, a board member of the ECPSA, and a member of the Human Rights Committee of the Finnish Academies of Science. She serves on board of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies (2021-23; deputy in 2015-20), and served on the board of Finnish Association of Scholarly Publishing 2014-18, as chair in 2017-18. She represents Learned Societies at the National board of open science 2021-22. She contributed to a range of publications from the FPSA to reach open access format: being the first Editor of Politiikasta – the online magazine in 2012, promoting Politiikka the association's journal to be open access from 4/2018, and the series pro et contra Books from the Finnish Political Science Association to appear in open access at Helsinki University Press in 2020.