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Blog 28.06.2023

Finland's sustainable growth and development is built on digitalization

Global challenges and dwindling global resources are turning our attention to digital opportunities. New solutions are needed now and in the future, in every industry.
Janne Järvinen

Mission Lead, Digitalization
janne.jarvinen (at)
+358 40 7544 738



Technological advances and an increasingly digitalized living environment are driving business opportunities and are the lifeblood of sustainable growth and future prosperous societies. The 2020s will be known as the digital decade, and the world is investing heavily in it. Europe's digital capability is one of the Commission's priorities and will receive significant EU funding.

The fact is that the development of technologies and digital infrastructure will be the most significant transformation of our economy since the industrial revolution. All sectors will go through this transformation, so companies need to start thinking about their business in a new way now.

1. Learn from digital native companies

Competing for the most advanced, cost-effective and easy-to-use innovations requires entrepreneurs to be competitive and to strengthen their competitive edge. Businesses need to invest more boldly in digitalization and learning from digital native companies. In particular, a new attitude is required from management, as digitalization cannot be outsourced to the IT department or consultants. They are digitally embedded in everything they do, agile and able to scale up and down.

Digital native companies are digitally embedded in everything they do, agile and able to successfully scale their operations globally. There are several excellent examples in Finland, such as Relex, a software company valued at EUR 5 billion.

Finland's competitiveness and the national goal of carbon neutrality in 2035 are entirely dependent on the development of digitalization.

Advanced digital technologies provide a key platform for solutions to global challenges and new models, such as the circular economy.

For Finland to succeed, we must also help companies in the early stages of digitalization to evolve towards the new digital normal. Business Finland is here to help companies.

2. Building the data economy through cooperation

In addition to learning from the digital natives, we need to invest in the network technologies of the future and the data economy. Investing in this combination will create significant new international competitiveness. As a developer of telecommunications technology, Finland has also been known for the development of iconic mobile phones. But that is not enough. To make better use of connectivity, we need to have the infrastructure built around it and a functioning data economy.

We need technological solutions that make it easier for companies to work together. Digitalization is the new foundation for business: digitalization affects all the work we do and should be the starting point for training in different sectors.

Software skills are a critical success factor for almost all businesses. Finland's software capabilities can be built to be the best in the world through, among other things, community and peer learning, where software-intensive organizations come together to form a network that shares best practices and lessons learned.

3. Responding to global disruption opens the way to the world

A key objective of our mission-driven approach is to better understand global disruption, its impact on business today and, above all, the new business opportunities it presents. We help companies to innovate, accelerate their journey to the world and at the same time improve the competitiveness of companies and Finnish society as a whole, now and in the future.

Business Finland's Data Economy program encourages Finnish SMEs in particular to develop international business based on the use and sharing of data. Our 6G Bridge program makes Finland a global leader in 5G Advanced and 6G technologies for sustainable industry and future society.

At the same time as companies' own development work, long-term and large-scale public sector investment in Finland's digital development is also needed. The emergence of a common digital data economy and development must be accelerated by all possible means, from funding to legislation.

With digitalization, we are building ways of working that are based on streamlining everyday life and working together. Digital also allows us to fit within the limits of the planet's humanity.

Read also the blog of our Executive Director of Strategy on the choices we have made

This blog is part of Business Finland's thematic strategy work, which has identified sustainable future growth opportunities for Finland. Business Finland has selected five areas to focus on in the coming years. This blog opens the Productivity from digitalization growth opportunity.