Bridging firms, policies and academia for the benefit of the Northern Dimension

The Northern Dimension (ND) is a mosaic of diverse histories, traditions, strengths and challenges. ND area has a lot to gain from taking advantage of the diverse capacities within the region. Furthermore, in times of geopolitical tensions, economic problems and social challenges, joining forces for the joint benefit is increasingly pivotal. We have a lot to gain from tackling common problems and pinning down the potential of freely flowing people, goods and ideas.

Clearly, there is a need for active Northern Dimension structures with four functional Partnerships on Environment, Culture, Transport & Logistics, and Health & Social wellbeing, and the ND Business Council. Also, in the rapidly changing operative environment, there is a growing demand for accurate information and channels of dialogue to support the ND Structures. This is where the Northern Dimension Institute comes to the fore. NDI is an international network of universities and research institutes from 11 countries that have stated interest in providing relevant research that supports private and public decision making in the ND area.

During 2014-2015, NDI is coordinated in Finnish-Russian cooperation, namely by Aalto University (Finland) and two Russian universities: Northern (Arctic) Federal University in Arkhangelsk and St Petersburg State University of Economics. During the two years, NDI disseminates and promotes the generation of ND related information. Doing so, NDI maintains the website with information on research, projects and events in the ND area, organizes and participates in ND-related conferences and seminars, and takes actively part in the dialogue within the ND structures. Most importantly, NDI aims to build a neutral academic bridge that intensifies the dialogue between business, research, policy, NGOs and all the actors involved in ND agendas.

This ND Newsflash is a key tool in the dialogue. The Newsflash brings to the fore the voices of ND actors who point to problems, raise needs and demonstrate best practices within their expertise. The electronic Newsflash is sent directly to ND decision makers and stakeholders and it is flexible in size and frequency, coming out quarterly and whenever there is need for a voice. Let us all take use of this new arena of networking, communicating and awareness rising.

Please send your input and comments to NDI coordinators piia.heliste(a) or hanna-elina.koivisto(a)

Prof. Riitta Kosonen
Director, Center for Markets in Transition (CEMAT)
Aalto University School of Business

CEMAT is the lead coordinator of the Northern Dimension Institute (NDI) for 2014-2015.