Seeking new hope from green transition and digitalisation for left-behind regions

The objective of the new European project, MOBI-TWIN, being implemented in 2023-2026, is to find out how the green and digital transition, known as the Twin Transition, will affect regional development in Europe.

The MOBI-TWIN – Twin transition and changing patterns of spatial mobility: a regional approach – project studies spatial mobility of people (commuting to work, permanent and temporary migration, and working from several different locations) between regions. The primary goal is to find out the changing drivers influencing the decisions of individuals to relocate and how these drivers change due to Twin Transition. This will enable us to examine the effects of the twin transition on regional attractiveness in Europe. The project is geared to understand the impact of these changes on different regions of Europe and develop innovative policies that promote balance and inclusivity by harnessing the positive effects of Twin Transition.

In Finland, the project is led by geographer, Academy Research Fellow Olle Järv, who is an expert in digital spatial data and mobility studies from the Digital Geography Lab research group at the University of Helsinki. The Digital Geography Lab provides the project with expertise on people’s regional mobility and big data analytics, and focuses especially on cross-border regions in the EU, multilocal living, and working from home.

“At the moment, the research group is working on collecting various datasets to create the project database, and is responsible for the analysis of mobility flows at regional level,” says Olle Järv.

The research is focused on different forms of mobility in Europe since 2010, such as permanent migration, temporary international student exchange, seasonal migration and multilocal living, and daily work commuting. The analysis gives us an understanding what factors describe regional differences in mobility flows and how they change with time.

The creation of the project database involves the collection of various existing information sources, such as regional socio-economic structures and environmental characteristics, in addition to information about the mobility f people. The project database is the main source for carrying out upcoming research in the project.

Northern and Southern Savo as pilot

The project will study five pilot regions located in Greece, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, and Finland. The Digital Geography Lab will be responsible for carrying out the pilot study in Northern and Eastern Finland in cooperation with local agents, such as the Regional Council of Southern Savo.

Consortium backed by EU includes researchers from nine European countries

The MOBI-TWIN project will continue until May 2026. Besides the University of Helsinki, there are eight other partners in the consortium from Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, France, Greece, and Cyprus: White Research SRL , Aristotelio Panepistimio Thessalonikis , Rijksuniversiteit Groningen , Universitat de Barcelona , Fondation Europeenne de la Science , Politecnico di Milano , Erevnitiko Panepistimiako Institouto Periferiakis Anaptixis , Acceligence Ltd.

MOBI-TWIN has received funding from European Union’s Horizon Europe Research and Innovation Programme under Grant Agreement N° 101094402, with a total budget of 2.91 million euros.

More details:

The consortium web site

Twitter ( @MobiTwinProject )

LinkedIn (@mobi-twin-project-heu) .

the Digital Geography Lab at the University of Helsinki