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How does it work?

Photo: City of Tampere/Hanna Leppänen

Projects make the results

The Six City Strategy is a vast entity that includes dozens of projects related to sustainable urban development, employment and competence. With these projects, the Six Cities solve development challenges together with each other and companies, residents and R&D&I organisations. All Six City Strategy  projects are implemented by at least two of the Six Cities.

The most important target groups for the projects include companies and R&D&I organisations, while ESF projects target special groups such as unemployed youth or immigrants and other jobseekers.

The basis of the Six City Strategy was developed in three large-scale spearhead projects: Open data and interfaces, Open participation and customership, and Open innovation platforms. They have pushed forward the essential elements of the Finnish smart city model: customer centered cocreation, opening and utilising data and developing services in real urban environments. At the same time, the cities’ competences have improved in all of these areas.

Six City Strategy evaluation (pdf)



Photo: Igor Väisänen

The coordination is in charge of the Strategy’s operations 

The Six City Strategy coordination is in charge of the national and city-specific coordination, activation and communication of the strategy. With coordination, we can ensure that the national realisation of the strategy and the related cooperation proceed in accordance with the decisions of the management group and the direction of the steering group. The Six City Strategy is coordinated by the city coordinators and the Six City Strategy Office.

Photo: Igor Väisänen

The city coordinators are in charge of coordinating and monitoring the Six City Strategy projects of their respective cities. They also share information about the Six City Strategy operations within the cities and regions. The coordinators help cities identify areas for improvement and support the projects both in the planning and implementation phases. They are also in charge of seeking the right specialists for the project ideas. Networking the projects is also one of the coordinators’ areas of responsibility.

The Six City Strategy Office ensures the progress of the Six City Strategy and facilitates cooperation between the various parties. The Strategy Office is also in charge of coordinating the application and evaluation processes, together with the steering group. The Office also supports city-specific coordination and promotes the adoption of the projects’ results, as well as the sharing of best practices between cities. The responsibilities of the Office also include strategy-level communication, supporting the communication of the projects and the Six Cities and coordinating the visits of international and national visitor groups.

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The management group and the steering group lead the Six City Strategy

In the Six City Strategy, the highest power of decision is held by the joint management group of the Six Cities, consisting of the leaders in charge of matters related to economy, innovation and urban development in their respective cities. The management group decides on the strategy’s objectives and projects to be funded and is in charge of monitoring the strategy together with the financiers.

The steering group supports the work of the management group and directs the coordination of the Six City Strategy. The steering group is responsible for project application and evaluation processes, steers national and international network cooperation and monitors the projects’ progress. The steering group also prepares matters for the management group to discuss, executes the management group’s decisions and reports on the realisation of the strategy to the management group.

In the cities, the Six City Strategy operations are organised through the collaboration of the management group, the steering group and the city coordinators. Each city organises the city-specific operations in a way that suits its organisation.

Members of the management group:

Head of Economic Development Harri Paananen, City of Espoo, chair
(Substitute: Director of Economic Development Tuula Antola, City of Espoo)

Director Juha Ala-Mursula, BusinessOulu
(Substitute member: Innovation Manager Aarne Kultalahti, BusinessOulu)

Director of Economic Development Kimmo Viljamaa, City of Vantaa
(Substitute member: Director of Growth Services Jaakko Niinistö, City of Vantaa)

Executive Director Teppo Rantanen, City of Tampere
(Substitute member: Project Director Tero Tenhunen, City of Tampere)

Director of Economic Development Marja-Leena Rinkineva, City of Helsinki
(Substitute member: Unit Manager Santtu von Bruun, City of Helsinki)

Director of Regional Cooperation Pekka Sundman, City of Turku, vice-chair
(Substitute member: CEO Niko Kyynäräinen, Turku Science Park)

Programme Director Tiina Huotari, Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council
(Substitute member: Structural Fund Adviser Hanna Laaksonen, Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council)

Regional Development Manager Johanna Osenius, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment

Senior Adviser Mika Perttunen, City of Vantaa (presenter, chair of the steering group)

Members of the steering group:

Programme Director Seppo Haataja, Business Tampere, chair
(Substitute member: Director of Business and Economic Development Timo Antikainen, City of Tampere)

Innovation Manager Aarne Kultalahti, BusinessOulu
(Substitute member: Funding Adviser Ari Saine, BusinessOulu)

Leading Adviser Kimmo Heinonen, City of Helsinki, vice-chair
(Substitute member: Senior Adviser Kajsa Rosqvist, City of Helsinki)

Senior Adviser Mika Perttunen, City of Vantaa

Growth Advisor Marko Puhtila, Turku Science Park
(Substitute member: Specialist Janne Mustonen, City of Turku)

Director for City as a Service Development Päivi Sutinen, City of Espoo

Programme Director Tiina Huotari, Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council
(Substitute member: Structural Fund Adviser Hanna Laaksonen, Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council)

Financial Adviser Jukka Anttila, Häme Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment

Senior Officer Olli Voutilainen, Ministry of Employment and the Economy, Regions and Development Services

Ministerial Adviser Maaria Mäntyniemi, Ministry of Transport and Communications, Data Department

Six Cities Coordinator (alternating members)