Preliminary Results

The results of the process include findings that are both well-known and less known. The process will carry on and we continue to seek explanations to the gaps and to identify more precise measures that could remedy for the gaps. In order to see the complete results see the attached project report (only in Finnish) and the results viewed and analyzed in a context of the Finnish innovation policies.

Concerning the results we have following initial findings:

The Energy Cluster


Business partners are the most important partners in innovations. The international contacts are important but more important than this are contacts with other companies in the region. University partners outside the region are more important for innovation while the universities in the region are important as supplier of qualified labour force. The largest gap was identified in relation to SME suppliers to the large exporters. In relation to the public sector the survey presented a gap in relation to spatial planning and regional development.

In the future:

Other businesses are also seen as the most important partners in technology development also in the future. The need for advanced production methods will increase in the future. Smart grids and renewable energy technology was seen as having a bright future.

The Boat Cluster

Other companies are the most important partners when it comes to innovation and even if international partners are important, the most important partners are found within the region. Contacts with research could be extended in the fields of “high-tech” material development. The production process should be developed where the tradition of customer proximity should be combined with partnerships around material development.The largest gap was in relation to the public sector and in logistic solutions. There is a need for research and development on composite materials among the actors. The largest gap in relation to the public sector was in logistic solutions.

Fur Farming

Both national and international partners are important in the development of the activities, but the national partners are more important. There is a gap in relation to research and development but the need cannot be met by the actors in the region. This is not a problem for the sector as there are partners outside the region that can meet the gap. There is a large need to go through and scrutinize the production process as this has not been implemented for a very long period.

We will continue the dialogue around the results with cooperation partners in the region, but also in an idea exchange with international partners. The dialogue complements the work that is carried out within the INKA program.

Further information

Learning Sustainable Smart Specialization in Practice - The case of Two Regions in Europe and Latin America applying the Partnership for Regional Innovation Playbook. Johnson, J., Pinilla-De La Cruz, G., 2023.

Green Transformation in Ostrobothnia: Inspecting Multi-Level Perspective and Pathways in GRETA -Project. Jääskeläinen, J 2021

The Challenges of Public Organisations in Coordinating Smart Specialisation and a Connectivity Model as One Solution. Mäenpää, A 2020

Enhancing business driven circular economy. Summary report, 12th of June 2019.

Smart specialization driving globalization of small and middle-sized companies in Ostrobothnia. Johnson, J., Dahl, J. & Mariussen, Å.

Smart specialisation and social innovation: from policy relations to opportunities and challenges. S3 Policy Briefs Series
No. 24/2018 (see p. 17-21)

Knowledge for Innovations - Resources for Smart Specialisation. Björk, P. & Johansson, C.

Smart Specialisation Implementation Processes in the North. Lessons Learned from Two Finnish Regions. Teräs, J. & Mäenpää, A. (2016) p.75-86.

A connectivity model as a potential tool for smart specialization strategies. Virkkala, S., Mäenpää, A. & Mariussen, Å. (2017). European Planning Studies.

Smart Stories: Implementing Smart Specialication across Europe (Ostrobothnia: see p. 17)
European Commission 2016

Learning Smart Specialisation Using the Ostrobothnian Model
(by Jerker Johnson and Seija Virkkala in Smart Cities in Smart Regions, Conference Proceedings, p. 215)

The Ostrobothnian Model of Smart Specialisation
Seija Virkkala, Antti Mäenpää, Åge Mariussen (Eds.)
(University of Vaasa 2014)

El Modelo Ostrobotniano de Especialización Inteligente
Seija Virkkala, Antti Mäenpää, Åge Mariussen (Eds.)
Universidad de Vaasa

Advanced Monitoring and Coordination of EU R&D Policies at Regional Level 
Regional Report - Ostrobothnia 2013

AMCER: Draft Final Report Annex –Synthesis of R&D Systems
(Ostrobothnia: p. 92 ->)