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A new model of innovation cluster to foster smart city solutions

SCIC logo

HELSINKI, UUSIMAA, FINLAND, February 8, 2023 / -- A new kind of Smart City Innovation Cluster (SCIC) is established by a group of international companies and cities. The aim is to create Smart City solutions and accelerate the development of the field.

The SCIC's core action is to identify smart city challenges from cities, regions and businesses. The challenges are scouted actively in Finland and world wide. On the addressed challenges, SCIC seeks solutions and solvers from its members.

The SCIC consists of nearly 100 members. Members are Finnish and global companies of all sizes, cities, research institutes and universities.

The Smart City Innovation Cluster is an independent, non-profit cooperative. The aim is to create synergies and business opportunities for members. Each member is an equal member in the cluster's activities. SCIC has received Business Finland's RRF funding, to expand and speed up activities. The total value of the funding is €1.8 million over the period 2022-2024.

The challenges of smart cities can be very complex. They may require technologies from several different actors and cooperation. SCIC is bringing these challenges closer to organisations who can provide the solutions.

For identified challenges, member companies pool their resources and form applicable teams. Together they create and propose solutions for challenges. A first cooperation agreement has been signed with the Nueva Norte project in the city of Madrid. In the agreement, SCIC plays an important role in linking the actors.

Also the city of Kirkenes, Norway, has identified several Arctic challenges for SCIC members.

SCIC is also involved in the Smart City projects in Nusantara, Indonesia and Neom, Saudi Arabia. These locations SCIC works in cooperation with Business Finland and companies. SCIC and Business Finland scout solutions and solvers for challenges worldwide continuously.

"We are off to a strong start. Now we are building an extensive network of solution providers. Also a wide portfolio of international challenges is being collected. At the same time we are developing tools for cooperation" says Pertti Kortejärvi, CEO of SCIC.

"Interest in SCIC has been high and enquiries are coming in from all over the world. Our cluster stands out in the world, as we focus on practical action through real challenges. Also, we know our members and their talents. " continues Kortejärvi.

Among the key anchor members in the construction of SCIC are the cities of Espoo and Tampere. They have been actively involved in the planning of SCIC's activities.

"We are looking forward to working together with the Smart City business community. On the path of smart urban development, we are eager to see how our cities' challenges can be solved as well," say Teppo Rantanen, Executive Director of economic policy, competitiveness and innovation from Tampere, and Mervi Heinaro, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development, Sports and Culture from Espoo. "It is valuable to work together in solving challenges with global businesses and cities. And to serve as a reference example of successes".

"SCIC's members range from Finland's largest listed companies to small startups and research organisations, such as VTT. VTT has been crucial in getting the business off the ground through their expertise and networks. They bring research and scientific depth to the solution portfolio with the member companies and universities," says Kustaa Valtonen, Chairman of the SCIC Board, Finest Bay Area Development Ltd.

"Our goal is to stand out from all other Smart City players in the world. Our advantage is the active and strong solution-oriented culture. And strong expertise in technology, coordination and co-delivery."

"We want our members to collaborate with each other based on their own goals. We are only for our members and we want to bring in the best talent in Finland. For whom we scout the best challenges and opportunities!" Concludes Valtonen.

Additional information:
Kustaa Valtonen
+358 50 4155 300

Pertti Kortejärvi
Smart City Innovation Cluster
+358 44 9722549