Industries and innovation

Person working in a laboratory.

Business Finland

#10

Top 10 most innovative countries

Bloomberg Innovation Index 2021

With its reputation as a powerhouse of innovation, Finland offers plenty of opportunities for professionals who want to make the world a better, smarter place.

A culture of innovation

Driving societal change

Finland ranks among the world’s top 10 most innovative countries. Collaboration between companies, universities, and research institutions is common and makes for a thriving business environment and startup scene. 

 

People in Finland cherish new ideas and are curious how to make them work. For example, in the 40s, Finns built the first functioning flight recorder, later deemed “the black box.” In the 70s, we invented the heart-rate monitor. And just a few years ago, Finland was the first country to deploy a 5G network. 

 

Today, the country continues to support bold concepts and ideas. Finland’s recently introduced innovation policy encourages companies to invest in projects that positively impact society as a whole through things like research funding, legislation and environmental policies, or collaboration networks and platforms.

A child sits in a chair typing on a laptop.

Credits: Elina Manninen / Keksi Agency / Team Finland

A nation with passion for learning and equality: Finns believe everyone should have access to high-quality education.

People use virtual reality headsets.

Credits: N2 Albiino / Helsinki Partners

Finns view innovations like these as key drivers of growth, renewal, and productivity.

Investing in our future

Finland’s world-class educational system – an innovation in and of itself – is the foundation of the country’s cutting-edge research and innovation. With affordable daycare and free schooling for children from preschool through university, Finns are not only highly educated but tech-savvy, forward-thinking, and well-equipped to make positive societal contributions. Much of this is due to the country’s tax redistribution system – here is more on that topic. You can also have a look at this article to learn more about Finland’s world-renowned school system.

Advocating for the environment

Finns are eco-minded and progressive, and Finland is a world-leader in addressing climate change – all while generating economic growth and employment. Currently, the country is testing new solutions in renewable energy, wood-based bioplastics, nutrient recycling, and more. And Finland’s Climate Change Act encourages companies to invest in clean products and solutions and strengthens Finland’s role in the circular economy. Finally, Prime Minister Sanna Marin’s government aims to make Finland carbon-neutral by 2035, laying the groundwork for the country to become the first in the world to go carbon-negative.

An electric car charging at a city gas station.

Credits: Maija Astikainen / Helsinki Partners

Did you know Finland has one of Europe’s highest shares of registered electric vehicles?

Innovation at work

Finland is home to plenty of top companies offering attractive professional opportunities. If you’re interested in sustainability, tech, and innovation, here are a few fields to consider.

Tech and digital

Looking for a job in the tech industry? Finland is a global superpower in ICT and digitalization, designing technology and solutions that help people and companies around the world solve key problems and enjoy new experiences. For example, we introduced the world to the SMS and Linux systems, and you can even find Finnish sensors on Mars. 

 

Finland might be a small Nordic country, but it punches above its weight when it comes to tech. We're a global leader in health tech, and we have the world’s most digital startups per capita. In fact, Helsinki is recognized as the startup centre of Northern Europe. Given this reputation in tech, it’s no wonder the world’s second-largest startup event, Slush, takes place in Finland each winter. If you’re a highly skilled foreign worker looking for a position in tech, you’re in luck – Finnish companies are heavily recruiting international talent.

Finnish scientists stand in front of Finland’s first commerical 54-qubit quantum computer.

Credits: VTT

Say hello to the future: Scientists in Finland recently built the country's first commercial 54-qubit quantum computer.

Biotechnology and the circular economy

Finland is one of Europe’s greenest countries. Not only is it covered with forests, it's also home to some of the world’s leading clean tech companies. Finland’s roots in the forestry industry provide a solid foundation for major investments in biotech research and the development and the creation of innovative bio-friendly products. 

 

Our booming research-based startup community is also a core contributor to the bio-based sector. In fact, customers around the world are already making use of numerous goods produced in Finnish laboratories and piloting facilities, including wood-based plastics alternatives and fully biodegradable packaging. If you’re looking to build or advance a career in biotech or the circular economy, Finland is an excellent choice.

A Finnish forest.

Credits: Jari Kostet / Visit Finland

Finland is Europe’s most heavily forested country, with 86% of its land area covered by woodlands.

A man works in a lab that makes textiles out of wood and waste materials.

Credits: Business Finland

Waste not, want not. Finnish company Spinnova uses breakthrough technology to make fiber from wood or waste materials.

Clean energy

Tomorrow’s smart energy technology is being developed and tested in Finland today. Already, 40% of Finland’s energy comes from renewable energy sources like biomass, hydro, wind, and solar. But we’re not stopping there: by 2030, Finland will go coal-free, and we aim to be carbon-neutral by 2035.

 

Finnish companies are global market leaders in renewable technologies, such as wind turbine components, solar inverters, and bio and waste-to-energy systems, as well as pioneers in system integration and smart networks. If smart energy is your passion and field of expertise, you’re sure to feel right at home in Finland.

Hands-on professions

While high-tech gets most of the hype, there are plenty of other industries – including manufacturing, construction, service, and healthcare – that require skilled workers. After all, these jobs and industries are essential to keeping society running smoothy. However, please note that Finland’s immigration service sets minimum salary requirements for different professions. To see the latest information, please visit their website

 

Ready to apply for a job in Finland? Search job openings here.