The Academy of Finland’s reviews of the state of scientific research in Finland support Finnish universities and research institutes in their efforts to further develop their operations. The reviews also serve to strengthen the knowledge base for policy-making.
The Academy has produced reviews of the state of scientific research in Finland regularly since late 1990s, at two-year intervals since 2012. In addition, the Academy prepares complementary analyses between the publication years. Such a review process requires active collaboration with stakeholders both when preparing the reviews and when making good use of their results.
The 2016 review
The 2016 review of the state of scientific research in Finland analyses research personnel and funding, publishing, scientific impact and co-publications. The bibliometric analyses compare Finland to twelve research-intensive countries. The review includes a separate section on the impact of research beyond academia, analysed using both qualitative and quantitative methods.
- Read more about the highlights of the 2016 review in the press release.
- Some data used in the review are available also in English via Vipunen, the education statistics portal run by the Finnish educational administration.
- The Finnish-language report Tieteen tila 2016 (State of Scientific Research in Finland 2016) is available in PDF format.
The 2016 review recommends the following:
There is a mutually reinforcing relationship between top-level research, high-quality education and the broader impact of research. This must be taken into account in research and innovation policy.
- Science has both intrinsic value and significant societal impact.
- Universities and other research organisations must support, monitor and evaluate the broader impact of research in all its forms.
- The broader impact of research arises through multiple routes: through proficient people, cooperation and interaction, and through the transfer of research results. The various routes of impact and roles of science in society must be taken into account in the promotion of impact beyond academia.
The research-based profiling of higher education institutions must be continued.
- Finnish higher education institutions are currently reinforcing their research profiles, and there are promising examples of efficient distribution of work and collaboration as well as of new initiatives arising from the profiling areas. Progress in the increased profiling of research institutes as part of the development of research environments has also been encouraging.
- What matters is the sufficient concentration and level of expertise in a certain theme or phenomenon – not the size of the university or unit.
- Stronger profiling also supports the development of new initiatives and promotes the impact of research beyond academia.
The outcome is delivered by people: recruitment and researcher training.
- Recruiting skilled researchers, teachers and students is the most important decision universities and research institutes make.
- Instead of quantitative indicators, recruitment should focus more extensively on scientific quality, regenerative capacity and impact.
- Particular care must be taken to develop researcher training so that it provides a good foundation for demanding and wide-ranging research and specialist tasks in various sectors of society. The training should also emphasise researchers’ ability to orient themselves into new areas and generate new knowledge and know-how. Universities must actively develop the contents of researcher training also in collaboration with other employers.
- President, Professor Heikki Mannila, Academy of Finland (Chair)
- Counsellor for Science Affairs, Head of Team Erja Heikkinen, Ministry of Education, Science and Culture (Vice Chair)
- CTO, Docent Heidi Fagerholm, Kemira Oyj, Board of the Academy of Finland
- Rector, Professor Liisa Laakso, University of Tampere
- Rector, Professor Jukka Mönkkönen, University of Eastern Finland
- Rector, Professor Jouko Niinimäki, University of Oulu
- Professor Heikki Ruskoaho, University of Helsinki, Board of the Academy of Finland
- President and CEO, Professor Mari Walls, Natural Resources Institute Finland