Regional Council of South KareliaPlanning and developmentRegional developmentSmart specialisation in South Karelia

Smart specialisation in South Karelia

South Karelia Innovation Strategy 2022–2025 – ”eKarelia heart beating for innovations” #rethinkers

Smart specialisation (S3, S4, RIS) aims at the diversification of competence and industrial renewal by focusing on place-based strengths. The strategy is prepared in cooperation with stakeholders and forms a process in which new business opportunities can be identified and developed. Smart specialisation is an enabling condition for the national operating programme for regional and structural funds “Innovation and skills in Finland 2021-2027”. In Finland smart specialisation strategy work is coordinated by 18 regions (NUTS3 regions).

In South Karelia the content of smart specialisation strategy has been fully included in the Regional Programme of South Karelia 2021-2025 approved by the Regional Council in December 2021. Due to the geopolitical situation, the regional programme was updated during 2023, but smart specialisation strategy content remained unchanged. Smart specialisation content of the regional programme has been also published as a separate report. This is the English language version of that report – The South Karelia Innovation Strategy 2022-2025.

The structure of the strategy includes an outlook to the regional innovation environment, strategic priorities that are linked to the main themes of the Regional Programme, stakeholder cooperation and implementation. There are four priority areas which are 1) user-driven wellbeing services, 2) renewing industry and entrepreneurship, 3) green transition pioneers, and 4) accelerating experience economy. Cross-cutting themes include culture of experimentation, accessibility, internationalization and digipower. The strategy is built on the concept of social, economic, environmental, and cultural sustainability.

The regional innovation strategy acts as a common framework for development initiatives in the region and a scheme for setting joint-priorities for development. The strategy is used as a reference in the allocation of public development funds (e.g., ERDF, JTF, ESF+, national regional innovation funding, EU level thematic funding instruments), in the policy dialogue with national and international authorities, in the branding and marketing of the region’s competence, and in identifying potential strategic partnerships.

For more information, please contact:
Manager, Regional Development, Laura Peuhkuri, tel. +358 40 631 5970, [email protected]