MDI Visits SuomiAreena in Pori

SuomiAreena – the Finnish version of Swedish Almedalen – is nowadays the most important public open debate forum taking place in the City of Pori. The event is organized by MTV (the biggest Finnish commercial Broadcasting Company) and the City of Pori (for more information, click here). This year MDI is present at the SuomiAreena on final day, 15th of July.

MDI is currently carrying out three research projects as Government’s analysis, assessment and research activities. One of the projects deals with regional government reform, second one with the development of city regions and networks, and the third one with digital services in rural areas.

As a background study to all these research projects as well as related to reform “Future municipality” by the government MDI launched a survey to municipal decision makers and civil servant. The results of this survey will provide valuable insight for the reform and decision-making. An online survey was sent to all municipalities in Mainland Finland, reaching in total nearly 12 000 respondents (for more on the survey here).

Firstly, results are utilized in VAAKA-research project, which analyses the ongoing regional reform in Finland. The second project ToKaSu (Functional regions and growth corridors in Finland) focuses on growth corridors which are connecting areas and are subjects of increasing interest in strategic co-operation. The third project Smart Countryside studies the development of digital services in rural areas. Digitalisation and decentralized solutions are great opportunities for countryside. There is a will for change but both infrastructure and ability to use digitalisation need to be improved. The first results are listed in the Policy Brief published today. It is important to invest in the users’ ability and urge to use electronic services, as well as in the physical infrastructure.