City innovation platforms supporting business development

citybusiness is Finland’s six biggest cities collaboration, where they open their infrastructures and processes to companies, to aid companies to innovate, develop and test new products.

The innovation platforms are real-life testing environments which can be used for product development. Innovation platforms contribute to sustainable development and creation of new jobs. Companies get references from six advanced Finnish smart cities and cities get early adopter view to new innovations in the field of digitalisation.

In the Six City Strategy, Open Innovation Platforms project Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa, Tampere, Turku and Oulu combines their own innovation and development environments into an open innovation platform network. The three-year project’s (1.2.2015–31.1.2018) budget is 12,4 M€. The objective of the strong network of open innovation platforms is to improve Finland’s national competiveness. By building the national network of open innovation platforms, driving new competence development, business and jobs creation will become more efficient. Utilizing the wide variety of knowledge and specialization in different cities the best practices and concepts will be collected to form excellent basis for new type of city business modeling (Smart Market Creation).

The national open innovation platform network will significantly support the new business development in modern international, competitive digitalized world. The environment will also support the development of the new devices, service solutions and institutional research. The target is to offer “one-door” –solution for focus groups. The other main objective is to offer structured platform for digitalization of the municipality services, involve the companies to create new innovative ways to implement services and thus utilize all available local resources. With this model the role of the city will evolve from service provider to service creation enabler.

From single activities to large entities

The coordinator of the collaboration is City of Oulu/City of Oulu Economic Development Agency BusinessOulu. It is responsible of project administration, internal cooperation, stakeholder cooperation and follow-up of the work. Innovation platform development and other development work is divided in between the partner network, consisting of the six cities, universities of Oulu and Tampere, Forum Virium Helsinki Oy, The Council of Tampere Region, Tampere Region Economic Development Agency Tredea and Turku Science Park.


6Aika Open Innovation Platforms – Handbook for Developers PDF