Personal details and the date of the CV

  • Surname: Viljanen
  • First names: Valtteri Kustaa
  • Research ID: ORCID iD 0000-0002-8373-0847
  • Date of the CV: 18 February 2023


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Turku, Philosophy, 12 December 2007.
  • Title of Docent: History of Philosophy, University of Turku, 27 October 2010.

Current employment: Senior Researcher of the Kone Foundation project The Emergence of Pessimism (2023–2027); PI of the Emil Aaltonen research project Modern View of Concepts (1 August 2020–31 August 2023); stage of the academic research career: Senior Researcher (the third stage, independent research and academic leadership).

Previous work experience 

  • Senior Research Fellow in the Academy of Finland project Viral Culture in Early Nineteenth-Century Europe, 1 September 2019–31 July 2020.
  • Academy of Finland Research Fellow, University of Turku, 1 September 2014–31 August 2019.
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Turku Institute for Advanced Studies,1 January 2012–31 August 2014.
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Academy of Finland, University of Turku, 1 January 2009–31 December 2011.
  • Junior Researcher, Finnish Graduate School of Philosophy, 1 March 2003–2 May 2007 (University of Turku).
  • Longer term visits abroad: Birkbeck, University of London, UK (Visiting Fellow, 2019–2020); New York University, USA (Visiting Scholar, fall 2011); Uppsala universitet, Sweden (Visiting Postdoctoral Researcher and Teacher, spring 2008); Université Paris VIII Vincennes–Saint-Denis, France (Visiting Scholar, spring 2004); Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany (Ph.D. studies, 2002–03).

Career breaks: sick leave 22 April–4 June 2013; paternity leave and parental leave 7–21 September 2005, 24–28 October 2005, and 25 March–4 July 2006.

Research funding and grants: Kone Foundation, €178,800 (2022); Emil Aaltonen Foundation, €200,000 (2019); The Academy of Finland, Academy of Finland Research Fellow (2014); Niilo Helander Foundation, €10,000 (2014); The Finnish Cultural Foundation, €11,000 (2014); Turku Institute for Advanced Studies, Postdoctoral Researcher (2011); Turku University Foundation, €6268 (2011); The Emil Aaltonen Foundation, €2500 (2009); The Academy of Finland, Postdoctoral Researcher (2008); The Academy of Finland, €9000 (2007); Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation, €18,000 (2007); The Finnish Cultural Foundation, €8000 (2007); Turku University Foundation, €13,820 (2002); Niilo Helander Foundation, €13,500 (2002); Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation, FIM 60,000 (2001).

Research output

Total number of publications 45; ten most important publications:

  1. (With Peter Myrdal and Arto Repo) “Leibniz on Possibilia, Creation, and the Reality of Essences.” Philosophers’ Imprint, forthcoming.
  2. Spinoza (with J. Steinberg). Polity Press, 2021.
  3. “Why Virtue Is not Quite Enough: Descartes on Attaining Happiness.” Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 2021, 103 (1): 54–69.
  4. “The Young Spinoza on Scepticism, Truth, and Method.” Canadian Journal of Philosophy 2020, 50 (1): 130–42
  5. “Kant on Moral Agency: Beyond the Incorporation Thesis.” Kant-Studien 2020, 111 (3): 423–44.“The Young Spinoza on Scepticism, Truth, and Method.” Canadian Journal of Philosophy 2020, 50 (1): 130–42.
  6. “Spinoza on Activity and Passivity: The Problematic Definition Revisited.” – M. Reuter & F. Svensson (eds.), Mind, Body and Morality: New Perspectives on Descartes and Spinoza, 157–74. Routledge, 2019.
  7. “Spinoza’s Ontology Geometrically Illustrated: A Reading of Ethics IIP8S.” – Beth Lord (ed.), Spinoza’s Philosophy of Ratio, 5–18. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2018.
  8. “Spinoza’s Essentialism in the Short Treatise.” – Yitzhak Y, Melamed (ed.), The Young Spinoza: A Metaphysician in the Making, 183–95. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015.
  9. “Spinoza on Virtue and Eternity.” – M.J. Kisner & A. Youpa (eds.), Essays on Spinoza’s Ethical Theory, 258–71. Oxford University Press, 2014.
  10. Spinoza’s Geometry of Power. Cambridge University Press, 2011.

Research supervision and leadership experience: Supervisor of doctoral students: (with O. Koistinen) D. De Bruyn (Ph.D. 2014) and P. Vaparanta (ongoing); (with O. Koistinen & V. Lähteenmäki) J. Sinokki (2011–14); Leader of the Emil Aaltonen project The Modern View of Concepts (2020–2023); Leader of the Romantic Era Research Group (2014–).

Teaching merits

  • Teaching at the University of Turku: Springs 2002–05, 2009–12, philosophy of human sciences; Spring 2014, fall 2010 and 2011, spring 2013, seminars on early modern philosophy; Fall 2010 (with H. Meretoja), seminar on Michel Foucault; 2005–2016: altogether 14 lectures on the philosophy of human sciences.
  • Teaching abroad: spring 2008, seminar on Spinoza, Uppsala University, Sweden.
  • Teaching sample, University of Turku (2010), grade: excellent.
  • Pedagogical studies in Teacher Training, University of Turku, 1998.

Awards and honours: Lecturer of the Year 2012, awarded by Index, University of Turku; Turku University Foundation prize for outstanding dissertation, 2008, €1300.

Other key academic merits

  • Service as an examiner of a Licentiate Thesis: K. Ranki, University of Turku (2010).
  • Evaluation for the Title of Docent: T. Tahko, University of Helsinki (2013); M. Roinila, University of Helsinki (2015)
  • Reviewer for: Cambridge University Press (2014–2022); Journal of the History of Philosophy (2011–13 & 2022); Journal of Modern Philosophy (2022); History of Philosophy Quarterly (2014–2020); Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie (2013–2018); Canadian Journal of Philosophy (2011 & 2015); Science in Context (2014); British Journal for the History of Philosophy (2014); Ergo (2014);  Philosophical Quarterly (2013); Poliittinen talous (2013); Lexington Books (2011); Ajatus (2010–11).
  • 55 papers presented in international conferences (of which 19 as an invited speaker); 27 papers presented in national conferences and workshops; 5 invited lectures for Finnish non-philosopher audiences.
  • Organizing scientific conferences and workshops: 11–12 October 2014; 2–4 October 2015; 29–30 May 2017; 28–29 May 2018: The Finnish-Hungarian Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy, main organizer with M. Griffin et al.; 1–2 June 2017, Turku: Nature, Mind, and Action in Leibniz, main organizer with P. Myrdal.; 20–21 March 2015, Helsinki: Metaphysics of Properties, main organizer with J. Hakkarainen et al.; 1–4 August 2013: Second Arctic Circle Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy: Self, main organizer with M. Roinila et al.; 16–17 December 2011, Turku: Early Modern Metaphysics of Causality and Representation, main organizer: 10–11 January 2011, Turku: The Annual Colloquium of the Philosophical Society of Finland, main organizer with H. Siipi; 29–30 September 2006; 22 August 2008, Turku: The Finnish Research Seminar on Early Modern Philosophy, main organizer.

Scientific and societal impact: Editorial Board member of the Journal of Spinoza Studies (2022–); Member of the Nordic Network in Metaphysics, 2015–; Organizing Committee member of the Finnish-Hungarian Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy, 2014–2022; Executive Committee member of Dynamis – The Finnish Network for Metaphysics, 2013–; Board member of the Philosophical Society of Finland, 2010–14.

Other merits: Finnish military rank: Second Lieutenant.