Planning and development


Smart specialisation is the response to the wishes of the European Commission and the Finnish Ministry of Employment and the Economy to name the regions competitive fields of research and innovation. It will be the basis for directing development funding to the region and creating international partnerships. The objective of smart specialisation is to utilise the region’s competence potential.

Smart Specialisation Strategy for South Savo has been updated for the years 2018-2021. Our focus of specialisation for the coming years will be Wood, Water and Food, specifically Forest biomass based new products and production processes, Clean water and environmental safety technologies and Organic products and food safety innovations. South Savo's Smart Specialisation Stategy 2018-2021 can be read from the link below. Please also check Smart Specialisation Platform (link below) for list of contact names regarding research, development and innovation stakeholders in our region (in related links).

Smart Specialisation Platform S3 (link to new page)

Smart Specialisation Strategy 2018-2021 (pdf)


Right now, Europe is facing numerous challenges which arises from lack of appropriate skill-base, high unit labour costs, deindustrialization, decarbonization, globalization, aging population and many more. These challenges do not scatter evenly across the regions. Basically, this means that some of the regions will benefit and some will suffer from this current situation.

East and North Finland is formed by seven regions - South Savo, Pohjois-Savo, North Karelia, Kainuu, Central Ostrobothnia, Oulu region and Lapland. Together the regions of East and North Finland sent the Expression of Interest to participate in European Commission's pilot Regions in Industrial Transition and was accepted as one participant region among 11 other regions and countries. During this pilot East and North Finland aims to form a unified strategy, based on smart specialisation strategies and shared strenghts and needs of the seven regions that make the East and North Finland. This process of strategy planning includes mutual learning and sharing of good practices in innovation policy implementation, governance and monitoring.

During this process we aim to:
•    Define a set of actions in the form of a comprehensive strategy build on smart specialization, clusters and digitalization
•    Identify possible collaboration and funding opportunities at European, national and regional level
•    Link with other regions in regional and cluster partnerships
•    Share good practices

You can learn more about Regions in Industrial Transition through the link below (link to new page):