Creative Scholar &
Professional Intellectual


Miia Halme-Tuomisaari defines herself as a professional intellectual and a creative scholar, and further as an ethnographer of life. In more conventional academic terms she is a legal anthropologist specialized in the analysis of human rights. She is Associate Professor in Human Rights Studies at Lund University.

Miia Halme-Tuomisaari has a background in both Social Anthropology and Critical International Law. In addition to holding a PhD in Social Anthropology (University of Helsinki 2008), she has the title of Docent from the Universities of Helsinki (Social and Cultural Anthropology, 2019), Jyväskylä (Social and Cultural Anthropology, 2018) and Turku (International Law, 2016).

She published in October 2020 a Finnish language popular science book around the Covid-19 titled Kaikki kotona: kun korona mullisti maailmamme (Kirjapaja 2020).

Her other recent publications include ‘Guarding Utopia: Law, Frustration and Vulnerability at the UN Human Rights Committee’ (Social Anthropology 2020), ‘Methodologically blonde at the UN in a tactical quest for inclusion’ (Social Anthropology 2018), ‘Guarding Vision: law, vulnerability and frustration at the UN Human Rights Committee’ (forthcoming in Social Anthropology) and Revisiting the Origins of Human Rights (CUP 2015/PB 2018, co-ed with Pamela Slotte). She is currently working on a monograph around UN human rights monitoring.

In 2018 she was a Senior Consultant in the first ethnographic study commissioned by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. In 2017 she participated as a Senior Researcher in the Geneva Academy’s Academic Platform for Treaty Body Strengthening. She is a member of the editorial board of PoLAR: Political and Legal Anthropological Review and Social Anthropology/Anthropologie Sociale.

In addition to conventional academic publications, she writes actively for diverse unconventional &/ non-academic contexts, including, which she co-created and edited in 2013-2018 (with Julie Billaud). Miia Halme-Tuomisaari regularly holds scholarly talks and visiting lectures, having taught at the university level since 2003. In addition, she talks at more unconventional contexts including art-science events,  particularly of new publication modes and scholarly social media.

Miia Halme-Tuomisaari is active in searching for new expressive modes for scholarly work, resulting among others in the creation of Allegra Lab Hki (with Taina Tuori & Reetta Toivanen). In 2015 she was involved in the launching of the Finnish-language, acting as the project director for funds allocated by Kone Foundation in 2017-2018. In 2019-2023 she directs the Kone Foundation funded project for a new online portal In 2016-2018 she was board member of the foundation for the Helinä Rautavaara Ethnographic Museum. She was a board member of the Finnish Anthropological Society in 2015-2018, and in 2019 was elected into the Executive Committee of the European Association of Social Anthropologists (2019-2020).


Miia documents her path as a scholar and joins ongoing societal debates via her numerous (public) social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter and in particular her instagram account @observari.


A collective of academics, an association and an online experiment co-founded by Miia Halme-Tuomisaari in 2013 and edited until 2018 (with Julie Billaud).

Allegra Lab HKI

Art-Science Association founded in 2014 in Helsinki. Co-founder (with Taina Tuori & Reetta Toivanen) & Chair.


Popular Finnish-language anthropology publication. Editor-in-chief in 2016-2017 (with Timo Kallinen), director of Kone Foundation project in 2017-2018.

Allegra Lab HKI:n projekti, joka pyrkii edistämään populaarin tutkimuksen saavutettavuutta. PI of Kone Foundation funded project for 2021-2024.


Fieldnotes from the UN 


Kenttäblogi Johannesburgista

New York

Kenttäblogi New Yorkista