Tampere Ambassador: Miisa Karjalainen

Where are you from?
I was born and raised in Tampere. One could say that I haven't gotten very far, since I currently also live in my childhood home. I have only been away from Tampere a few years while studying in Helsinki and in Seville, Spain.

What would you like to tell about yourself?
I am an internationally minded lawyer and linguist with very good language skills and a strong sense of justice. I appreciate very highly the Finnish nature and all it has to offer and I also find environmental issues in general very interesting. Environmental issues are by definition truly global and need to be considered with an international approach. Some people see me as dog enthusiast as a lot of my time is taken up by my two dogs of the Hungarian breed mudi. Music is also important for me; I play the piano and the violin and even sing a little. Someone once described me as sparkling. I think it's an accurate description of my personality and attitude both as a private person and professionally.

Why is Tampere the best place to live?
Tampere is just the right size; the life here is not as hectic as it is in the Helsinki region but we still have all the services and possibilities a big Finnish city can offer. The location is excellent and the surroundings are just beautiful. In less than a half an hour you can get from the busy (but beautiful) city centre to quiet locations with great views over the lakes or into green and peaceful forests. Tampere offers great opportunities for both national and international businesses and it also offers excellent education in various fields and on many different levels. There is a magnificent cultural life; we have many theatres and museums, our own philharmonic orchestra, summer festivals and concerts, a film festival, a flamenco festival, a chili festival... Tampere just has something for everybody!

Tell about your professional activities?
In 2016 it has been ten years since I graduated from law school. My professional experience consists of working with mainly business law at three different law firms in Tampere. I have also worked as the legal counsel of one of Finland's biggest hobby organisations, The Finnish Kennel Club. Currently I work as a lawyer/attorney at Suojanen & Alanen Attorneys at law. I also run a small firm called Translucida, focusing on legal and technical translations in Finnish, Swedish and English (and also from Spanish to Finnish). Since my candidacy in the parliament elections in 2015 I have been involved in the activities of the Green Party in Tampere. Further, I have a significant professional interest in environmental law, even though I haven't had many opportunities to actually work with environmental issues. Another professionally interesting field is the textile industry, which has had a important role in the history of Tampere and is now a global issue with many links to environmental and corporate responsibility questions.

What is your involvement in international activities?
At the moment I am not as much internationally engaged as I would hope to be. Ten years ago I went to live in Spain for a year. Spanish and Latin American culture have still a special place in my heart. Last year I participated as a volunteer in the international networking event Twinkle 2015 working at the Twinkle World section. I am also a member of the European Green Party working group of the Finnish Greens. I have considered working abroad many times, but then again, I wouldn't be able to live in Tampere.

What is your mission as a Tampere - All Bright! Ambassador?
I will do my best to promote Tampere as a great place to study, work and live as well as try to connect Tampere with international business activities.

What potential do you see for Tampere in the future?
Tampere has grown a lot in the past and continues to do so constantly. Tampere is an attractive city for different kinds of people from students and businesses to tourists. Tampere has been a centre for technology and innovations and I expect it to still strengthen its position within these fields. We have a lot of competent work force to offer. The area surrounding Tampere has also a lot of potential. It is important to further develop the accessibility and transport connections of Tampere.

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