First Students Graduate from the LFC Programme

The first intake to the Masters’s Degree Programme in Leadership for Change was in 2017. In Spring 2019, the first LFC students are graduating from Tampere University. Congratulations!

The LFC students graduate from three different tracks according to their chosen specialization – business studies (BUS), politics (POL), or governance (GOV). However, the multidisciplinary approach of the LFC programme is visible in the versatility of master’s thesis topics.

A ceremony is organized at the end of each semester for students graduating from Tampere University.

The theses cover a wide range of topical issues, including the EU-Turkey Statement on migration, value propositions in mobile payments, the development of foreign policy consensus in Estonia, celebrity endorsements in marketing, legitimization of the Nord Stream2, sport as a tool of immigrant integration and much more. You can access and read the theses by clicking on the title.


Ann-Charlotte Johansson‘s (GOV) thesis Managing a systemic change on an operational level explores and reports how managers deal with and manage a systemic change in the context of a public organization. Johansson focuses in particular on the Swedish Armed Forces. She finds out that not only the type of change but also institutional dynamics as well as communication, participation and resources influence the way in which changes can be managed on an operational level in a public organization.

The thesis by Olga Konevskikh (POL) Foreign policy and political parties: the case of Estonia covers the evolution of Estonian foreign policy from 1999 to 2019. Konevskikh focuses in particular on the development of a “foreign policy consensus” among Estonian political parties since 1999. Konevskikh analyses party electoral programs and manifestos and scrutinizes the role of political parties in foreign policy decision-making. According to Konevskikh, her study contributes to previous research on Estonia’s foreign policy from the liberalist point of view and will help to understand the role of political parties in foreign policy decision-making more broadly.

Liudmila Lagutina‘s (POL) thesis Identity construction in the Barents Euro-Arctic Region examines how the identity of the Barents Euro-Arctic Region is constructed through multilateral cultural cooperation. Lagutina argues that while the issue of Barents regional identity has been previously covered in academic research, there has been little previous research on the role of cultural cooperation in regional community building and collective identity development. Yet, this question is particularly interesting in a culturally diverse region such as the Barents Euro-Arctic Region. Lagutina finds out that actors in the field of cultural cooperation do not perceive Barents identity construction as a primary goal of their activities. Nevertheless, promotion Barents regional identity becomes a “by-product” of regional cultural cooperation.

Inessa Lotonina‘s (BUS) thesis Analyzing parasocial influence of celebrity endorsement on Russian Millennials examines the use of celebrity endorsements in social media in marketing. Lotonina’s point of departure is the effectiveness of celebrity endorsement for reaching Millennial consumers pinpointed out by marketing scholars. The purpose of Lotonina’s thesis is to explore how parasocial interactions shape the consumer behavior of Russian Millennials in particular. Through her research, she seeks to contribute to literature on both parasocial interactions and celebrity endorsement by providing a consumer perspective on the persuasiveness of social media endorsements. Lotonina discovers that followers see celebrities mostly as trustworthy individuals and are willing to purchase products endorsed by them without hesitation. This creates wide possibilities for marketers to utilize celebrity endorsement.

Aleksei Mikhailov‘s (POL) thesis When is reorientation seen as Europeanization? scrutinizes the Swedish policy development assistance to the Baltic states during the period from the 1990s to 2004 with a special focus on Latvia. The case of aid-giving policy is examined in the context of the post-Cold War transition of the Baltic states supplemented by the prospective of their integration into the EU. According to Mikhailov, his analysis offers new insights into how Sweden has been constructing its interests, power, obligations and commitments in relation to processes taking place in the post-Cold War Europe.

Berfin Osso‘s (POL) thesis Rethinking Rightlessness: the “Right to Have Rights” and the EU-Turkey Statement scrutinizes the externalization of migration management in the specific context of the EU-Turkey Statement’s concept of a “safe third country,” readmission agreements, and interception of migrants at maritime and land borders. Drawing upon the legal dogmatic method, the thesis, firstly, analyzes the impact of these three instruments on the rights of asylum seekers and refugees on the Greek islands, at the Greek-Turkish border, and in Turkey. Secondly, against the backdrop of the Arendtian “right to have rights,” it argues that the problem today is in fact access to a “right to have rights.” Osso shows that a refugee excluded – due to the implementation of the EU-Turkey Statement – from the state territory (at the border), from the general application of law (by way of the law) and from the space of appearance (in the polis) is also prevented from accessing safe soils, asylum (procedures) or a durable juridico-politico status, as well as a politically organized community for the claim and enjoyment of human rights. She thus shows that rather than “merely” depriving migrants of certain set of rights enshrined in international and regional human rights instruments, the EU-Turkey Statement deprives them of a more fundamental “right to have rights” – which also puts other rights in jeopardy.

Tero Penttilä‘s (BUS) thesis Challenges in implementing a supply chain ramp-up process [Limited Access] describes and analyzes the challenges faced in supply chain ramp-up implementation in a young, medium volume manufacturing company. This single case study is based on an ethnographic observation method and includes a detailed description of the case company’s supply chain ramp-up implementation, accompanied by an overview of the main actors involved and the main phases during ramp-up. Furthermore, key challenges and their top issues for effective supply chain ramp-up in a young, medium volume manufacturer are identified and analyzed in the thesis. According to Penttilä, the results of the thesis can help in understanding the interdependencies and essential tasks during ramp-ups.

Reyver Serna‘s (POL) thesis Legitimization of Nord Stream2 analyzes stakeholder interactions for the development of the Nord Stream Project 2 in Kotka and Hanko, the Finnish municipalities involved in the construction of a new pipeline that can transport natural gas to Europe through the Baltic Sea. Serna focuses on the relationship between democracy and corporate planning on the basis of which he makes conclusions about the new socio-political context in which organisations operate.

Oleg Shaltaev’s (POL) thesis Sport and soft power: the case of sport as a tool of immigrant integration in Sweden examines whether and how the idea of Sweden as a multicultural society and the image of sport as a tool of integration have been used to increase the power of attraction of Sweden in international relations. Do sportspeople with an immigrant background constitute a form of Swedish soft power? Shaltaev’s research shows that although there is no explicit agenda on the part of the Swedish state to employ sportspeople of immigrant background in Sweden to promote soft power, there are elements of soft power in the examined phenomenon. Sportspeople with an immigrant background – as well as various integration projects associated with them – are able to attract positive international attention and can thus be said to constitute a form of Swedish soft power. Shaltaev identifies a set of themes through which such soft power can be said to emerge: sport as a tool for integration, the idea of New Swedishness, representing Sweden, transnational belonging, personal development, and anti-racism.

Snezana Starovoitova‘s (POL) thesis (De)securitization of the Polish minority in Lithuania analyzes the processes of (de)securitization of the Polish minority in Lithuania. Starovoitova suggests that her research can shed light on the complex relations between Lithuanian authorities and Polish minority. Moreover, both the securitization and desecuritization of the Polish minority by Lithuanian authorities are an understudied phenomenon. Starovoitova finds elements of both securitization and desecuritization in the analyzed speeches and documents by Lithuanian authorities. She also points out ways in which the representatives of the Polish minority are seeking to improve their position through the expansion of their rights.

Zheng Zhao‘s (BUS) thesis Cashless society: consumer-perceived value propositions of mobile payment deploys a cross-cultural consumer behaviour perspective to analyse the consumer-perceived value regarding mobile payment. The thesis aims to identify and analyse the potential antecedents as well as their correlation effects on consumer value perception. Through this it is possible to reveal the perceived value propositions of mobile payment. On the basis of both quantitative and qualitative analysis, Zheng Zhao identifies two predominant influencers of consumer value perception: Firstly, the cultural background of consumer; Secondly, the design and infrastructure of mobile payment. Zheng Zhao suggests that the study refines existing knowledge regarding consumer perception on mobile payment.

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