Funding from many sources

Finnish universities, which receive most of their funding from the state budget, are increasingly engaging in research projects funded by companies or foundations. The University of Helsinki has had positive experiences of such operations.

Forest is one of the subjects of research in the University of HelsinkiFor example, a recently published study on environmental protection on private lands was funded by the Marjatta and Eino Kolli's Foundation. Eino Kolli's sawmill and wood processing company was once among Finland’s most significant private enterprises in the field. Each year, the foundation carrying his name invests money in projects for the public good, such as basic and applied research, as well as development work.

“We have co-operated with the University of Helsinki before, and our experiences have been positive,” says Esko Kolli, a spokesperson for the foundation. “Universities are an excellent channel to find researchers for projects that would be of practical benefit, as they are home to so many different kinds of expertise.”

Professor Pekka Kauppi, who participated in the project, is also pleased with the collaboration. “Foundations are more flexible financiers that the traditional funding channels, as it is easier to make personal contacts with their representatives and there is not as much red tape as, for example, in EU projects,” he says. “Besides, researchers will appreciate that they are able to take part in something that has practical benefits. These studies are published and scientifically scrutinised just like any other piece of research.”

Text: Niina Haasola
Photo: Digital Photo DTP Oy

Translation: Valtasana Oy

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