I ran in the Espoo City Council election of June 2021 as a candidate of the Social Democratic Party of Finland (Suomen Sosialidemokraattinen Puolue, SDP).
Researcher, Kalevi Sorsa Foundation
Doctor of Philosophy in History (DPhil), St Edmund Hall, University of Oxford, 2020
2020 Substitute Teacher, Espoo and Helsinki municipalities
2020 Construction Worker, Maximus
2016-2018 Graduate Tutor, University of Oxford
2014-2020 Doctoral Student, University of Oxford
2010-2014 International Civil Servant, United Nations (UN)
2009 Project Assistant and Intern, Permanent Mission of Finland to the UN
2007-2008 Key Account Manager, Schering-Plough
2004-2005 Private, Finnish crisis management contingent in Kosovo
Various other positions held: warehouse worker, factory worker, office assistant, catering assistant, security guard, lecturer, intern in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, research assistant, etc.
Member of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) since 2004
Member of the Executive Committee, Yhteiskuntapoliittinen sosialidemokraattinen yhdistys (SDP party branch)
Member of the SDP Working Group on Foreign, Security and Defence Policy
Born 1980 in Espoo
Married, one child
Corporal (reserve), Finnish Army
1. Improving Espoo’s public finances
In recent years Espoo’s public finances have deteriorated, and the situation has been made worse by Covid-19. Expenditure is growing faster than income. Espoo is the most indebted municipality in Finland.
As City Councillor I will promote a responsible and realistic economic policy, to improve Espoo’s fiscal position. All policy decisions must be based on fairness. We should not deprive the weakest members of society of public support. There should be no favouritism, either in terms of neighbourhoods or interest groups. Overpriced luxury projects that fail to benefit residents should be cancelled. The city should seek new sources of income from construction and improvement of the employment rate.
Espoo is one of the engines of Finland’s economy, but the city’s resources are not unlimited. We must improve Espoo’s public finances.
2. Repairing the damage of the Covid-19 crisis
Preventing the spread of Covid-19 has required unprecedented and severe measures. The inoculation programme offers hope, but society has sustained considerable damage during the crisis.
As City Councillor I will work to ensure that Espoo handles the pandemic effort efficiently, until the pandemic is defeated. The damages in residents’ lives must be repaired without delay: long waiting lists in healthcare, disruption of school education, and the increase of various social problems. Crises create anxiety and loneliness, and hence mental health and substance abuse services will be of paramount importance. We should invest in the future of children and young people, but we cannot forget the elderly.
After the pandemic comes reconstruction. Espoo must focus on the welfare of its residents.
Voting aid websites offer voters the chance to compare their political views with the candidates’ views. The Finnish Broadcasting Company’s (YLE) ‘Election Compass’ is available in multiple languages. My answers are available in English, below.
mikko.lievonen @ gmail.com