Societal impact

Societal impact refers to the ways in which research contributes to developments in society and to dealing with social issues. Impact is a complex phenomenon that arises in the interaction between research data and other factors, often over a long period of time.

Depending on the field of science and the tasks of the research organisation, research can have impact in society in many ways. Science is the foundation of human understanding. It helps build sustainable wellbeing and prosperity, and it can be used as a basis for decision-making, for developing practices and for teaching. High-quality research produces expertise that we use to tackle major societal challenges.

Selected figures on outputs and impact of research funded by the Research Council of Finland

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Impact figures: New knowledge, technology, skills, insights or perspectives generated by research are transferred outside the scientific community through different routes: skilled people, transfer of research results and interaction between academia and stakeholders.

Competence clusters: In line with the objectives of its strategy, the Research Council of Finland supports the strengthening of competence clusters through, for example, funding for Centres of Excellence, Finnish Flagships, research infrastructures and partnership networks.

Funding for societal challenges: The Research Council of Finland supports high-quality, responsible and high-impact research and its utilisation for the benefit of society.

Explore State of Scientific Research in Finland data on research funding, research personnel and scientific publishing.


  • Otto Auranen, Senior Science Adviser, tel. +358 295 335 141, tietoaineistot(at)

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