‘Inside the office’ is a blog series based on short conversations with the members of B2N team. My name is Edward Gerald Hingert and I am an intern for the project. For this post, I talked with Dr. Hannele Mäkelä.
Edward: Please tell us a bit about yourself, your background and your position in B2N project.
Hannele: I am Hannele, and I work as a Senior Researcher in accounting. I have enjoyed the company of my lovely colleagues at the Tampere University for over ten years now. During these years, I have spent several months visiting my also very lovely colleagues abroad. Currently I am on a research leave funded by the Postdoctoral pool. First, I spent four months visiting the Université Laval in Quebec City (Canada) in the Fall and Winter, 2018-2019. From the beginning of February 2019, I have been in Copenhagen (CBS, Copenhagen Business School) where I will stay for seven months. I am fascinated about the role and uses of accounting in everyday lives as well as in the organizations we work in and in the surrounding society. I have been very lucky to become a part of the B2N project and share my thoughts on the relationship between business, accounting and the natural environment. In the project, I focus on the roles related to business and accounting, in particular.
Edward: What are your thoughts on B2N project?
Hannele: Even though I have not been spending much time at the workplace with fellow researchers, I have enjoyed the project greatly. Working in a multidisciplinary group is not always easy or fruitful, but I must say that in this sense, B2N is an exceptional group. I have enjoyed the discussions and I have learned a lot. In addition, we always have fun. This has created an excellent environment for multidisciplinary discussions and for pursuing the aims of the projects.
Edward: Could you shed some light on how your background in CSR, social accounting and accounting influences your contributions to the project?
Hannele: I think my background in social accounting and particularly in critical perspectives on accounting has given me a specific view on looking at the relationship between business and the natural environment, and at business-stakeholder relationships. I often try to find ‘alternative’ understandings of this interaction, instead of the purely economic and monetary aspects. This is, of course, what the whole project is about, too.
Edward: What plans do you have in mind for the future after B2N is over?
Hannele: While I will happily continue working on my other on-going research projects, I certainly hope that this cooperation will continue in one way or another in the future. I must also confess that because of this project and our overwhelming thoughts and conversations on the topic of stakeholders, I have – even to my own surprise! – developed an interest in analyzing the corporate-stakeholder relationships more thoroughly in my other projects as well. I guess I will be busy thinking about the relationships between business, stakeholder and the natural environment in the future, too.
I would like to give a big shout-out to Hannele for giving her insights about the project despite her busy schedule.