Department of Industrial Engineering and Management

IN2MISSION: How can innovation policy accelerate the creation of solutions to our greatest societal challenges?

The Informational Infrastructure to Accelerate Mission-Oriented System-Level Transformations (IN2MISSION) project seeks to understand what are the most impactful innovation policy tools that will accelerate the development of solutions to grand challenges.
Abstract image with colours picturing Energy materials textures. Photo by Helen Marton

IN2MISSION midterm results: 
Accelerating Informational Infrastructure Solutions for Societal Challenges
Wed 18 October at 8:30-11:00  Aalto University, Dipoli | More information & registration

IN2MISSION research project seeks to improve the understanding of innovation policy tools and instruments that enable advancements and innovations in data and platform economy that would accelerate mission-oriented activities and system-level transformations. In the project we will focus on a select set of EU Missions addressing the grand and societal challenges, specifically the tackling of climate change and the strive for climate-neutral smart cities.

Data and platform economy allows innovation of totally new ways to accelerate system level change of industries and society while at the same time creating ample opportunities for high growth business. Data and platforms can together establish a facilitative and enabling infrastructure that supports coordination, collaboration, and transparency, of company and public sector mission-oriented activities. A well-working and transparent informational infrastructure where data is pooled and used in intelligent ways can radically impact the effectiveness and scale of mission-oriented activities and accelerate system-level transformations.

However, there is currently a lack of incentives, policies, and guidance for well working informational infrastructure to develop around mission-oriented activities. Therefore, we aim to understand:

  • What are the underlying impediments in the development of informational infrastructures for mission-oriented activities?
  • What are the key properties of the impactful informational infrastructure of mission-oriented activities?
  • What are the means for innovation policy to support and advance the development of informational infrastructures for mission-oriented activities?

From a pragmatic perspective, the project seeks to produce tangible advice to support the development of the Finnish business, innovation and entrepreneurship policy as well as management practices on acting efficiently and seizing business opportunities in mission-oriented activities.

The duration of the project is from August 2022 to August 2024. It is funded by Business Finland.

Research team

The research partners include Aalto University, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and international collaborators.

The project leader is Dr. Robin Gustafsson, Associate Professor at the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management at Aalto University. Robin’s research focuses on strategy and organization in technology disruptions, how and why digital is disrupting industries and markets, strategic digital transformation, new sources of competitive advantage arising from digitalization, platform economy, platform business and strategy, and innovation policy and strategy in the age of digital and platforms.

Dr. Robert van den Have from Aalto Universityhas a long-standing experience with both empirical innovation policy and management research and has contributed to many policy-oriented projects and reports for national and international innovation policy and decision-making bodies. His research interests lie at the intersection of Strategic Management and Public Policy in the context of the determinants and outcomes of innovation and entrepreneurship.

Niko Lipiäinen is a doctoral candidate at LUT University and Aalto University. He is due to complete his doctorate by 2023. His research focuses on data and platform economy, and demand-side business strategies.

Dr. Kirsi Hyytinen has 20 years of experience in innovation policy research. She leads the ‘Future-proof Societies’ team at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland which focuses on supporting decision-makers to have concrete means to understand the future needs, design proactive policies and to analyze their impacts in the field of innovation and sustainable society. Her key areas of expertise are e.g. systemic innovation, impact assessment and evaluation of RDI and methodology development in future-oriented systemic impact evaluation.

Dr. Petri Rouvinen is a Professor of Practice in sustainable economy at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. Before joining VTT, he was Senior Economist at Avance Attorneys and before that Research Director at ETLA, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy, and CEO of its subsidiary Etlatieto. Rouvinen has supported enterprise and innovation policy for over two decades. His international engagements include IMD, the OECD, the UN, WEF, and the World Bank.

Dr. Jorge Martins is Senior Scientist at the Foresight and Data Economy – Future-proof societies research team at VTT. His research areas are technology management, foresight, strategy and innovation. His work focuses on the management of knowledge and inter-organisational networks, diffusion and adoption of key enabling technologies, and regional innovation systems.

Henri Wiman from VTT specialises in simulation modelling and qualitative systems modelling methods particularly regarding nonlinear social-behavioural dynamics. Henri has applied nonlinear analysis particularly for understanding sustainability transitions and the institutional/policy conditions for desired change.

International Collaboration

Our international collaboration contains an expert groups’ active engagement throughout the project. The expert group is composed of

Mission-oriented innovation policy experts:

  • Professor Dan Breznitz, University of Toronto, Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy & Innovation Policy Lab
  • Director Wolfgang Polt, Joanneum Research
  • Head of Research Michael Ploder, Head of Research Group Technology Innovation and Policy Consulting, Joanneum Research and

Digital infrastructure and data economy experts:

  • Professor Kalle Lyytinen, Case Western Reserve University
  • Professor Ola Henfridsson, University of Miami


 Robin Gustafsson

Robin Gustafsson

Associate Professor, Department of Industrial Engineering and Management at Aalto University
 Kirsi Hyytinen

Kirsi Hyytinen

Senior scientist at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Get in touch in social media! 

Robin Gustafsson Kirsi Hyytinen
Twitter @robingustafs Twitter @HyytinenKirsi
LinkedIn LinkedIn



Aalto University logo, black & white
VTT logo
Business Finland logo
  • Published:
  • Updated: