so, i managed to get some interesting work in exactly the length of contract i need to fill the time between now and the baby arriving. im pleased.
after more emailing around the university, i was able to meet with a researcher in the public health department of university of helsinki. she met with the head of her research group and they decided they had a small and focused project for me, that included some money. yay i will to it! this means i am putting the unpaid research i was trying to start up on the back burner (thankfully with no hard feelings from the other researcher) and will be focusing on this until the new kiddo decides to make an appearance. this is a 4 month contract, technically starting april 1, working on replicating an already published dutch study on early adolescent tobacco and alcohol use and its influence on later use/abuse of cannabis. i get to do analysis as well as be first author on the manuscript, and i can do many parts of this from home. so that is very cool.
also, while speaking to a doula program leader (more on this in a later entry), i found out that her non-profit does lots of public health research and has like 80-100 researchers in contact with or working for them. they work on pilot projects to implement into finlands health and welfare systems. i asked her to spread the word about me and that im open to paid or unpaid work of whatever kind. this sounds like my most interesting lead outside of academia yet.
however...the long term prospect of jobs in the public health field looks spotty at best. an article in the major finnish newpaper 'helsingin sanomat' noted more federal budget cuts for public health jobs and research, and that even european health funding is focusing on ever smaller topics of interest. not sure what the future holds, but at least im flexible. trying to stay positive.