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Digital patrons of a new era

In this scenario, power focuses on higher technologies and urban areas. The company's activities are highlighted by responsible capitalism and take on the role as global climate actors.

The size of large corporations is radically increasing. The sector and industry cross-border giants, new platform economy monopolies. The role of the giant corporations in decision-making is increasing as the role of the nation states loses its significance.

The giant corporations take over many tasks that have belonged for excemple to municipalities. The giant corporations own and administer their own cities, which provide workers and the community with services for education and health care for housing. People are strongly identified through their employer. Regions and populations are polarised to giant's members and groups.

Technology development and innovation are held by large corporations. We see the mergers and the rapid development of big business, for example in the storage of energy. Energy bursts are accelerating and society is electrifies at a pace.

Future scenarios

The scenarios presented here are descriptions of potential future scenarios of the external operating environment concerning Finland's competitiveness from the present until 2030.

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  • The EU and the USA move towards increased market liberalism and deregulation.
  • Consumers call for sustainable development and corporate responsibility and increasingly make choices accordingly. At the same time, social media increases pressure with regard to the transparency of operations. Financing sources also call for transparency and responsibility. Responsible companies are successful companies. Companies start to genuinely focus on responsibility.
  • Large technology companies respond to the lack of trust they face by making their operations more ethical and transparent. The industry starts to engage in strong self-regulation to avoid tighter legislation.
  • Solutions are needed to the major global challenges facing mankind, such as climate change, food availability, mass migration and the ageing of the population.
  • Nation states fail to find solutions to global problems. No agreement is reached on climate, for example. Instead, nation states argue about who is responsible for reducing emissions.
  • Public sector economies fall into debt to a substantial extent in many countries as the population ages. Social, health and pension costs rise and the size of the working age population decreases.
  • Large global corporations recognize that the major global problems pose a threat to their operating environment in an unparalleled manner and start to create plans to solve these problems.
  • Technology giants increasingly expand into new industries, such as healthcare (e.g. virtual healthcare assistants), education and logistics.
  • Health and wellness industry further converges with the technology industry, particularly in the case of companies that manufacture sensors and chips. People's interest in self-care management increases.
  • Technology giants make large investments in the development of renewable energy sources and energy storage solutions. The giant corporations recognize that the availability of clean energy is a precondition for their operations, technological progress and the electrification of society.


  • Collapsing confidence in the public-sector economies of European countries leads to higher interest rates on government bonds and deepening economic distress.
  • The public sector fails in service production. The focus of politics is on acute economic problems and debt, and climate change and other major global problems are ignored.
  • People's faith in political and national systems collapses.
  • Regulations on corporations are eased in Europe and the United States. The activities of the competition authorities lose their significance when indebted nation states lack the resources needed for effective monitoring. Large technology companies create open platforms and global standards (data use, individual rights, the terms of commerce)
  • Mergers of large corporations take place (such as Siemens and Google) as benefits of the combination of industrial and personal data are realized. A substantial leap in productivity is achieved and the significance of economies of scale rises to a new level.
  • Following mergers between major corporations, energy storage solutions develop in great leaps, enabling the widespread use of wind and solar energy and the efficient operation of small production units. This enables the extensive electrification of society. Electricity is produced to cover own needs for free and the surplus is sold to the network.
  • Environmental data and environmental technology have a big impact on resource circulation and resource efficiency increases. At the same time, this period is characterized by a consumption hysteria enabled by new technologies and cheap energy.
  • Corporations agree between themselves on climate regulation and decide that no-one should achieve an unfair competitive advantage at the climate's expense. Large corporations start taking climate action and refuse to cooperate with companies that are unwilling to commit to their targets.
  • Companies increasingly take on duties that have traditionally belonged to national and local governments. The boundaries between sectors and industries disappear.
  • Cities start to get profiled according to a given corporation. The power of urban areas grows — on corporations' terms. The Google bubble in Dublin grows stronger, and the influence of Microsoft increases in Paris.


  • Giant corporations start to provide various services for their members under the principle of universal basic services. The services they provide include healthcare and social services, education, childcare and even housing. This way, they ensure that they have customers and employees who have purchasing power and functional capacity. At the same time, they are able to collect high-quality data.
  • The population is divided between cities governed by giant corporations and rural areas whose inhabitants are not "members" of the giants. There are major differences in lifestyles and living conditions between cities and rural areas. The people living in rural areas also include nonconformists who have moved there to break away from the control of the technology giants.
  • In cities, giant corporations are responsible for the well-being and needs of their members. Thanks to the data they collect, the giant corporations are in a better position to do this than any nation state or municipality before them. They know everything about their cities' residents, from their health to their social relationships and lifestyles, which enables preventive measures of unparalleled effectiveness and allows them to control the lifestyles and behavior of their members through various incentives. Biohackers installing technology in their own bodies and transhumanism are part of everyday reality.
  • The service levels provided by the giant corporations differ from one another. Some are closer to the Nordic welfare state with minor inequality, while others are liberal welfare states where "everyone is responsible for their own luck" and competition is intense. The giants differentiate themselves with their profiles and compete for the most talented people in various ways.
  • Climate competition emerges (compare to tax competition). Educated young people want to live and work in carbon neutral cities and carbon neutrality becomes an increasingly important pull factor.
  • Different technology giants control cities in different parts of the world. Attracted by the young workforce, the giant corporations also increase their presence in the African metropolises.
  • As the significance of nation states declines, voting activity plummets and representative democracy reaches the end of its road.


Implications for Finland

Digital patrons of a new age – a shift in the ownership of Finnish companies

The ownership of Finnish companies gradually shifts to major foreign investors and corporations. Small companies and startups are quickly bought out, which affects Finland's business and innovation policy.

The public sector's problems providing services to Finland's aging population increases the demand for interventions by private companies. The role of the public administration as a service provider declines when giant corporations bring their own healthcare and education systems with them. Independent academic research declines.


The Finnish Parliament turns into a pseudo-institution, as multinational giants engage in self-regulation and introduce their own operating methods and regulation, ignoring state borders. Finland gives the green light to radical tax cuts to attract giant corporations to operate in Finland. Income gaps and productivity increase. Many benefit from the services provided by giant corporations, others are dissatisfied and cynical. Moreover, many Finns doubt their ability to influence matters, at least through politics.


Giant corporations gradually introduce their legislation, regulations and standards into the network of subcontractors. As a result, the regulations with the greatest impact on the Finnish business sector come from outside the realm of democratic decision-making.


The labor market has become polarized, and Finns face increasingly tough competition in the job market. The work communities of giant corporations are global. AI translation has broken down language barriers. One's employer is more important than one's profession in the job market, and the unionization of workforce is also organization based.


The influence of the traditional labor market parties declines and there is a shift towards international unions divided according to giant corporations.
The status of lobbies changes, as the field becomes more international, the ownership of Finnish businesses moves abroad, and heavy consolidation affects many sectors.


Energy-technology innovations offer an opportunity to Finland. The battery industry cluster is thriving, and the recycling and seabed extraction of battery minerals are growing fields of business.


Giant corporations also finance Finnish companies and ultimately many promising companies merge with giants. This is a great challenge to the government's innovation funding. There is a need for financing instruments suited to a model in which startups and small companies are quickly bought up.


In the job market, increasingly unscrupulous methods are used to attract highly competent professionals. The availability of a competent workforce is one of the only ways that Finland can attract large corporations to the country. Meanwhile, Finland faces challenges from the brain drain resulting from the global job market, further enhanced by the education provided by large corporations.

The assessment and reorganization of the education and research system becomes a topical issue.

Implications for

key industries

Bioeconomy and circular economy

The technology giants invest significant amounts of money in renewable energy, the bioeconomy and the circular economy. Methods for Carbon capture and storage and the reuse of carbon as material develop and become more common. Protein starts to be produced from thin air with the help of inexpensive energy, especially in sunny regions.

Raw material ownership lies with large corporations and power with large investors. The data of large corporations are used to optimize the circular economy.

Big industry as well as smaller operators and communities have local raw material cycles.

Companies have a strong interest in protecting the soil and groundwater. Cultivation solutions that conserve water and the soil quickly become dominant in the field.

Energy and cleantech

The share of renewable energy grows quickly to meet the needs of large global corporations. Traditional energy companies experience difficulties as major corporations expand their operations into energy production. Small energy companies go bankrupt or get bought out. Energy storage solutions develop extremely fast due to strong demand.

Corporation-led voluntary environmental regulation expands as pressure from consumers and financing providers increases.

Society's infrastructure, such as energy networks, groundwater reserves, water distribution and roads end up in the ownership of large corporations. Access to basic commodities outside the areas controlled by corporations becomes significantly more difficult, and the price of water increases.

There is a growing demand for clean industry solutions. Individual solutions spread rapidly into global use through the value chains of large corporations. The funding of innovation is dependent on the development programs of large corporations.

Health and wellbeing

Giant corporations increasingly shift to the health business. Giant corporations develop their own health services, acquire companies in the health and wellness sector and establish their own hospitals.

Drone deliveries of products such as medicines, blood samples and tissue becomes increasingly common both in cities and in rural areas. This promotes the availability of medicines in remote areas, for example.

Large corporations provide healthcare and education services. They also obtain high-quality data in connection with producing services. Thanks to data, large corporations can engage in preventive activities of unparalleled effectiveness. This also ensures the high functional capacity of their customers and employees.

The capital-intensive nature of pharmaceutical development favors large corporations. This is particularly evident in the field of gene therapy, which develops rapidly thanks to the capital invested by large corporations.

Consumer business and tourism

Consumer demands regarding sustainability and corporate responsibility increase. Self-regulation by technology companies restores consumer trust. Large technology companies create open platforms and global standards.

Consumption models change as everything happens in hubs controlled by large corporations. Technology companies expand their service to many fields and the boundaries between industries and sectors disappear. Most services can be acquired from the same provider, which makes life more convenient for many people but, at the same time, monopolization restricts the number of available alternatives.

Climate-friendly consumption becomes easy and effortless as consumers can trust that the services provided by giant corporations are climate-friendly.
Tencent strengthens its position in the travel business in China and in travel destinations favored by Chinese people


With all industries going digital tech giants have comparative advantage to operate in most industries.

Technology giants that develop into powerful conglomerates provide their customers with nearly all the services they need. This leads to people being divided into groups of members of different technology giants.

The giants continue to make major investments in individual cities, and cities subsequently "specialize" according to technology giants. People begin to identify as Google and Amazon people for example.

Technological development and data are controlled by the giants. Small companies and application providers are quickly bought out.

People's interest in self-tracking and analysis grows and attitudes towards new technologies are favorable. Even transhumanistic biohacking and self-improvement through technology is an emerging trend.


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