Academy of Finland selects four new Finnish Flagships

16 Nov 2020

Four new competence clusters have been added to the Academy of Finland’s Flagship Programme. The Flagship Programme’s third call focused on collaboration between research teams and the business sector, and also on high-quality research with impact and the capacity for renewal.

The Finnish Flagship Programme is an instrument that supports high-quality research and increases the economic and societal impact emerging from the research. The strong commitment of the host organisations to the operation and financing of the Flagships plays a key role in achieving the objectives. The four new Flagships work closely with business and other sectors of society, and their collaborators include a great number of large enterprises, SMEs and start-ups from different fields as well as educational institutions, hospitals and other public actors.

The new Flagships are:

  • Gene, Cell and Nano Therapy Competence Cluster for the Treatment of Chronic Diseases (University of Eastern Finland, University of Oulu, University of Helsinki, Aalto University, Finnish Red Cross Blood Service)
  • Atmosphere and Climate Competence Center (ACCC) (University of Helsinki, Finnish Meteorological Institute, University of Eastern Finland, Tampere University)
  • Innovation ecosystem based on the immune system (InFLAMES) (University of Turku, Åbo Akademi University)
  • Forest-Human-Machine Interplay (UNITE) - Building Resilience, Redefining Value Networks and Enabling Meaningful Experiences (University of Eastern Finland, FGI, Tampere University, Natural Resources Institute Finland).

This expansion of the Flagship Programme is based on supplementary authority granted to the Academy of Finland in the fourth supplementary budget of 2020, which allocated 25 million euros to fund new Flagships. The Academy is also prepared to fund the Flagships with an additional 20 million euros over the coming years. Funding for the Flagship Programme’s third call will therefore total 45 million euros for the period 2020–2024.

The National Roadmap for Research, Development and Innovation states that Finland’s competitiveness and wellbeing are built on competence, research and innovations. Competence clusters and ecosystems will be created from research and the networks that utilise it in order to strengthen spearheads and increase their impact. The Academy of Finland is supporting this objective with its Flagship Programme, research infrastructure funding and partnership network funding. The Finnish Flagships are part of the new partnership model of the national RDI roadmap.

Riitta Maijala, Vice President for Research at the Academy of Finland, said: “Flagships have the courage to reform research while also engaging in deeper multidisciplinary collaboration between both Finnish and foreign parties. It’s obvious that the Flagships have both economic and broader social impact.”

The Flagship Programme’s third call closed on 2 September 2020 and attracted 18 applications. The applications were first reviewed by individual experts and later by a panel. Applicants were given the opportunity to respond to the review of their application. The Academy interviewed the best applicants and finally selected four Flagships to fund.

The Flagships selected in the first two calls are in operation. After this third call, the Finnish Flagship Programme now comprises ten Flagships, whose host organisations include seven universities, five research institutes, Helsinki University Hospital and the Finnish Red Cross Blood Service.

Inquiries and more information

  • List of funding decisions
  • Read more about the Finnish Flagship Programme
  • Professor Johanna Myllyharju, Chair of the Academy of Finland Board, Chair of the Flagship Programme Subcommittee, tel. +358 294 485 740, firstname.lastname(at)
  • Riitta Maijala, Vice President for Research, Academy of Finland, tel. +358 295 335 002, firstname.lastname(at)
  • Maiju Gyran, Senior Science Adviser, Academy of Finland, tel. +358 295 335 015, firstname.lastname(at)

Academy of Finland Communications
Anna Oravakangas, Communications Specialist
tel. +358 295 33 5039

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