More about Helena Haapio

Helena Haapio

Helena Haapio

Helena Haapio

LL.M. (Master of Laws), MQ (Master of Quality)
DSc (Doctor of Science (Econ.))
Contract Strategist
helena.haapio @

I am a pioneer of Proactive Law and contract design, a practitioner by day and an author and editor by night. Based in Helsinki, Finland, I work as a Contract Strategist at Lexpert Ltd. I am currently also an Associate Professor of Business Law at the University of Vaasa, and a Professor of Practice and a Docent of Proactive Law and Contract Design at the University of Lapland.

After completing legal studies at the University of Turku, Finland, and Cambridge University, England, I served for several years as in-house Legal Counsel in Europe and the United States. My articles have appeared in several business and professional publications. My recently co-edited books include two titles published by Edward Elgar, Legal Design and Research Handbook on Contract Design. I have co-authored two books with Prof. George Siedel, A Short Guide to Contract Risk (Gower 2013) and Proactive Law for Managers: A Hidden Source of Competitive Advantage (Gower 2011).

My work on contract design and simplification has been recognized internationally: I was nominated as one of the “European Women of Legal Tech” in the category Academia & Education in 2020, and I have also been awarded a honorary Fellowship by WorldCC, World Commerce & Contracting (formerly IACCM, the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management). Together with Stefania Passera, we created their Contract Design Pattern Library. I have been actively involved in the development of the Nordic School of Proactive Law and of the ProActive ThinkTank. I acted as Expert to the European Economic and Social Committee in preparing its Opinion on The proactive law approach published in the Official Journal of the EU in 2009. I am also a co-founder of the Legal Design Alliance and a co-author of its Legal Design Manifesto.

I have conducted in-house and public workshops in various parts of the world on topics related to cross-border contracting, contract design, and contractual risk management, and have been nominated “Export Educator of the Year” by the Finnish Institute of Export.

Since my doctoral dissertation Next Generation Contracts: A Paradigm Shift (Lexpert 2013) my multi-disciplinary research focuses on ways to enhance the quality – especially functionality and usability – of contracts. Through a proactive approach, information design and visualization, I seek to fundamentally change the way contracts are designed, communicated, perceived, and taught.

For Helena Haapio’s Publications, see Resources.
Helena Haapio on LinkedIn.

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