The evaluation of the operating model of bridge agreements produces development proposals

MDI will carry out a study for the Ministry of Employment and the Economy to review the bridge agreement operating model and process as well as the effects of these agreements whilst also defining a proposal for the criteria to be used to select possible new bridge agreement areas. The bridge agreement is a process based on cooperation between actors across administrative borders and has been developed to support regional growth and exploit opportunities. Thus far, bridge agreements have been concluded in four areas: a bridge agreement was signed between the state and Southwest Finland for 2018–2019 and between the state and Kainuu, Pirkanmaa and North-Savo for 2019–2020.

The bridge agreement includes measures at regional and national level to strengthen, for example, labor supply, R&D, education and the knowledge base. The bridge agreements agree on measures that affect, among other things, the availability of labour, skills and education, research, development and innovation activities as well as the accessibility and recognition of the area.

The aim of the study carried out by MDI is to produce conclusions and development proposals that can be utilised in the implementation of ongoing bridge agreements in late 2020 and in possible new bridge agreements in the future. The work is carried out in accordance with the principles of multi-perspective and impact-based evaluation, using a developmental and operational research approach. Evaluation methods emphasise qualitative and interactive methods, but statistical data is also collected for evaluation. The final conclusions and development proposals are based on a holistic interpretation of the information gathered from different perspectives.