Mr. Janne Kuusela is Director General at the Defence Policy Department of the Ministry of Defence of Finland. Before the current post, Mr. Kuusela served as acting Director General (2016-2020) and Deputy Director General for Defence Policy (2020-2021). He is also member of the Arctic Policy Steering Group for the Finnish Government and board member at the Atlantic Council of Finland.

The Defence Policy Department provides policy and planning guidance for the Finnish Defence Forces. The Department covers issues such as national defence capability, defence cooperation, military crisis management, disarmament and arms control, as well as defence research.

Mr. Kuusela joined the MoD in 1999 working with Finland’s defence support for the Baltic States. Later on, he was specialist on European Security and Defence Policy (2001-2003) and Finland’s cooperation with NATO (2003-2006). He has served as Defence Adviser at the Mission of Finland to NATO Headquarters (2006-2009) and as Ministerial Adviser at the MoD (2009-2012) on Finland’s multinational and bilateral defence cooperation. Mr. Kuusela has also served as Director of the MoD Corporate Planning Unit (2012-2016), where his tasks included development of defence administration’s organization and economic efficiency, overseeing the implementation of government’s program as well as supporting the work of MoD’s management boards.

Mr. Kuusela is graduate of the University of Tampere, Finland. In addition to his Master of Social Sciences degree (International Relations and Economics) he has conducted graduate studies on International Relations in Berlin and Geneva, as well as post-graduate studies in the University of Helsinki.

Mr Kuusela was born in Rovaniemi, Finland, in 1972. He is married and has two children. He has completed national military service in the Finnish Navy (1992-1993) and holds the rank of Lieutenant Commander in reserve.

Mr Kuusela has been awarded the decoration of a Knight of the Order of the White Rose of Finland and a Medal for Military Merits, Commander of the Swedish Royal Order of the Polar Star, as well as Officier de l´Ordre National du Mérite Francaise.