Lauri Rapeli




Senior Researcher
Raseborgsvägen 9
tfn +358 (0)19 224 8403





I am a political scientist and my main area of interest is political behavior. That means studying what people think about politics and how they participate in it. I am a member of the Finnish Election Study Consortium, which among other things is responsible for the national election study. It is conducted as a post-election survey after the Finnish parliamentary elections. I am also involved in a research project, which studies the relationship between health and political participation. The project is funded the Academy of Finland and is led by professor Mikko Mattila from the University of Helsinki.

My work at Aronia is going to focus on decision-making processes concerning natural resources. I am particularly interested in studying how citizen participation in this sector could be enhanced and what effect that might have on the democratic process. I am interested in the following research questions:

  • Could increased citizen influence and new forms of political participation lead to decisions which from the citizens’ viewpoint would be considered as better?
  • How could we offer public officials, elected polticians and ordinary citizens better information and decision support in the complex questions pertaining to the use of natural resources?

Selected publications


Elo, Kimmo & Lauri Rapeli (2008): Suomalaisten politiikkatietämys (In Finnish: Political Knowledge in Finland). Edita Prima: Helsinki. (166 pages)

Rapeli, Lauri (2010): Tietääkö kansa? – Kansalaisten politiikkatietämys teoreettisessa ja empiirisessä tarkastelussa (In Finnish: Citizens’ Political Knowledge: a Theoretical and Empirical Study). Annales Universitatis Turkuensis C 296. University of Turku, doctoral thesis. (220 pages).

Rapeli, Lauri (2013): The Conception of Citizen Knowledge in Democratic Theory. Palgrave MacMillan: Basingstoke. (to be published in 2013)

Peer-reviewed articles in scientific journals

Elo, Kimmo & Lauri Rapeli (2010): Determinants of Political Knowledge: The Effects of Media on Knowledge and Information. Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties, 20:1, 133-146.

Rapeli, Lauri (2012): What Should the Citizen Know about Politics? Two Approaches to the Measurement of Political Knowledge. Journal of Democratic Theory, 2:2.

Rapeli, Lauri & Mikko Leino (2013): Kansalaisten poliittinen osallistuminen ja tietämys Suomessa (In Finnish: Political participation and political knowledge in Finland). Aikuiskasvatus, 33:1, 4-15.

Rapeli, Lauri (2013): Citizens’ Perceptions of Left-Right Ideologies in Finland. Turkish Journal of Politics, 3:2, 5-25.

Mattila, Mikko, Söderlund, Peter, Wass, Hanna & Lauri Rapeli (2013): Healthy voting: The effect of self-reported health on turnout in 30 countries. Electoral Studies (in press).

Articles in scientific monographs

Elo, Kimmo & Lauri Rapeli (2012): Politiikkatietämys ja poliittinen kiinnostus (In Finnish: Political knowledge and political interest). In Borg, Sami (ed.): Muutosvaalit 2011. (pp. 275-291) Department of Justice: Helsinki.

Söderlund, Peter, Wass, Hanna, & Lauri Rapeli (2012): Äänestäneiden ja äänestämättä jättäneiden mielipideyhteneväisyys ja poliittinen edustus (In Finnish: Opinion congruence and political representation among voters and nonvoters). In Borg, Sami (ed.): Muutosvaalit 2011. (pp. 116-125) Department of Justice: Helsinki.

Rapeli, Lauri (2013): Eduskunta ja kansalaismielipide (In Finnish: The Eduskunta and popular opinion). In Wiberg, Matti & Tapio Raunio (eds.): Eduskuntakirja. (Forthcoming)

Other scientific articles

Rapeli, Lauri (2010): Politiikkatietämyksen ajallinen vaihtelu Suomessa (In Finnish: Temporal variations in political knowledge in Finland). Politiikka, 52:2, 133-139.

Rapeli, Lauri (2010): Politiikkatietämyksen mittaamisen vaikeudesta (In Finnish: On the difficulty of measuring political knowledge). Niin & Näin, 17:3, 94-96.

Rapeli, Lauri (2011): Talouden valta nuorten poliittisen osallistumisen laskun takana? (In Finnish: Is the power of economics behind the decline in youth political participation?) Kanava, 39:2, 41-43.

Rapeli, Lauri (2011): Vihreää ja monikulttuurista: nuorisovaaleissa kuuluu alaikäisten kansalaisten ääni (In Finnish: Green and multicultural: youth elections are the voice of the underaged citizens). Politiikka, 53:3, 246-251.

Koskimaa, Vesa & Lauri Rapeli (2011): Nuorten poliittista osallistamista vai poliittisen eliitin pelastamista? (In Finnish: Engaging the youth or saving the political elite?) Nuorisotutkimus, 29:3, 96-99.

Rapeli, Lauri & Vesa Koskimaa (2011): Nuorista ja politiikasta. Pääkirjoitus (In Finnish: On youth and politics. Editorial). Nuorisotutkimus, 29:3, 1-2.

Rapeli, Lauri (2012): Nuorten äänestysinto: Jatkuuko nousu kunnallisvaaleissa? (In Finnish: Youth voting behavior: Will the upturn continue?) Nuorisotyö, 66:4, 10-12.