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Knowledge Sharing Breakfast focused on digitalization and the role of the Internet

The increasing role of the Internet provides opportunities to stem new economic growth and to enhance global competitiveness.

However, it requires a new perspective and mindset both in Finland and throughout Europe to support this change.

The Knowledge Sharing Breakfast at the School of Business, arranged by CKIR (Center for Knowledge and Innovation Research) on 8 December, brought together several key European and national initiatives aimed at getting the most economic value out of the Internet for Finland and other EU member-states.

Dean Ingmar Björkman welcomed the audience of almost 50 Finnish decision-makers, scholars and strategists to the event. The School of Business has produced valuable research on the economic impact of digitalization to Finland and the results of this research are influencing public-private sector strategies on ICT-implementation plans.

The Finnish Ministry of Communications and Transport has been driving key government work on the role of ICT-enabled services in Finland.

– Finland has a huge opportunity in this area that we actually know best, but do we have the will and guts to make new business out of it?, asked Minister of Education and Communications Krista Kiuru at the event. Furthermore, the Ministry is tasked to direct joint initiatives for "smarter" Finland in close interaction with the private sector.

Deputy Head of NET Innovation, Peter Fatelnig from European Commission, called business digitalization “the revolution”.

– This is where the jobs are in the future, he said and told that the European Commission has taken an innovative role in promoting stronger and concrete Internet-usage among European SMEs, in both start-ups and scale-ups. The EU FIWARE Future Internet Public-Private Partnership (FI-PPP) has produced an open source technology platform which is now rolling-out in Europe via a wide network of accelerators.

Aalto University plays a central role in the FIWARE programme and Finland is officially joining the group of EU countries directly benefiting from the programme. Aalto University also possesses unique knowledge on strategic digital issues such cybersecurity which should be regarded more as an opportunity for new business rather than just as a risk.

Jarno Limnéll, Professor of cybersecurity at Aalto University, pointed out that Finland has a competitive advantage when it comes to cybersecurity.

– Finland is perceived as a neutral and therefore trusted country and we have technological knowhow in a field where the market is growing rapidly. We need to have the courage to market and sell our knowhow and to go international.

Vice President (Digitalization & Renewal, Finland Chamber of Commerce) Ilkka Lakaniemi, now representing CKIR, led a lively panel discussion around the subject. The panelists were Peter Fatelnig, Kari Komulainen (Tekes), Ville Mickelsson (Cyberlightning) and Jarno Limnéll. 

Knowledge Sharing Breakfast seminars are aimed for business leaders, decision-makers and influencers. They offer fresh insights and inspirational discussions on current themes.

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