This annual award by the European Committee of the Regions is based on regional qualifications. In 2022 the theme is Entrepreneurship for a Sustainable Recovery. In its criteria, the Committee praised Helsinki-Uusimaa Region for creating an ideal environment for the sustainability-driven new generation of entrepreneurs.
–Especially young entrepreneurs have the courage to take open-minded big steps forward and along with their own competence further a social and economic change, Ms Christine Chang, EER 2022 Project Director at the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council, says.
Mr Simo Karetie is the Project Manager and Ms Miranda Sundholm the Project Coordinator. They are both fresh employees at the council.
– Due to the coronavirus pandemic, our starting point is undoubtedly challenging – but on the other hand, I would like to see this situation as a great opportunity for big changes in the way we think and act on the way to a green, digital and entrepreneurial future, Mr Karetie states.
The project team is eager for action. On 30 November, the kick-off event of the theme year will take place.
Inviting regional actors to collaborate
– We aim at the cooperation of various actors; our goal is to show a strength of networking for the speed-up of changes and the furthering of green transition, as stated by Project Manager Karetie.
The theme year includes three main goals in Helsinki-Uusimaa, which are: increasing the competence in circular economy and digitalisation, furthering the use of new business models and supporting the growth in circular economy business.
The actions will be to educate regional entrepreneurs and students to become experts in circular economy, to share business models for circular economy and to support companies to grow and get international.
Several funding sources are used to implement this theme year at the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council. These sources are the EU Interreg Europe Programme, the European Regional Development Fund, the national funding for sustainable growth and vitality in the region, as well as the budget funds of the council itself.
Underlying strategic documents for the regional aims are the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Programme, the Smart Specialisation Strategy for the Helsinki-Uusimaa Region, the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Climate Roadmap 2035 and the Helsinki-Uusimaa Recovery Plan.
Helsinki-Uusimaa successful in EER networking
The Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council is already experienced in the EER network with an earlier theme year well implemented, as Helsinki-Uusimaa is the only region that has been awarded an EER label twice. The last time the region was at the top was in 2012. The theme then was Young Entrepreneurship, and the programme included about 70 events.
The other regions awarded this year are in Portugal, Bulgaria, Spain, France, Poland, Italy, Ireland and Germany. Experience and good praxis of each region will be shared actively. The European Committee of the Regions will follow-up the regional implementations of the theme year.
The Committee has selected the best entrepreneurial regions since the beginning of 2010.
For more information, please contact:
Project Director Ms Christine Chang, phone +358 44 353 3014
Project Manager Mr Simo Karetie, phone +358 40 524 5431
Project Coordinator Ms Miranda Sundholm, phone +358 40 658 3384
Image credit: Anni Levonen