Exploring the Northern Dimension

Funding for the project 'Development of a think tank functions of the NDI' received from EC

The Northern Dimension Institute is happy to announce that we have signed the Grant Contract with European Commission (EC) for funding of our project Development of a think tank functions of the NDI for the next three years. The project is jointly designed and implemented by Aalto Universityas the Lead Partner, in partnership with University of Oulu(UOULU, Finland), International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis(IIASA, Austria), Northern (Arctic) Federal University(NArFU, Russia) and St. Petersburg State University of Economics(UNECON, Russia).

The NDI Think Tank project (Development of think tank functions of the Northern Dimension Institute) is designed to enhance genuine regional cooperation in the Northern Dimension (ND) area through science diplomacy, capacity building and people-to-people contacts.

NDI Think Tank project will focus on the following:

  • strategic development and institutionalisation and of the Northern Dimension Institute (NDI) into a regional think tank.
  • support decision-makers, ND partnerships, ND Steering Group members, ND Parliamentary Forum, ND Business Council, Barents actors, and other key stakeholders in their research-based information needs, thus enhancing evidence-based decision-making.
  • ensure level-playing field and platform for connecting the ND decision-makers and key stakeholders with the academic community into an open dialogue, people-to-people contacts, co-creation and dissemination on topics of common interest in the thematic fields of the four ND partnerships.
  • strengthening the voice of the civil society actors, including academic community, non-governmental organisations and the business community, as the key evidence-based knowledge providers and actors in dialogue on the common challenges and available solutions in the ND area,
  • raise awareness of the ND, ND partnerships, research-based information and policy briefs about the common challenges and available solutions on the jointly selected topics, future trends as well as outcomes of the ND collaboration.

The project website will be opened soon.

NDI Think Tank Project Overview(pdf)

Shortly about the Northern Dimension Institute

  • Established in 2009 by the approval of the Northern Dimension Ministerial Meeting in Stockholm
  • An open network of 33 universities and research institutes
  • Since November 2013, coordinated by Aalto University, St Petersburg State University of Economics and Northern (Arctic) Federal University
  • A neutral academic actor
  • Fulfils information gaps and disseminates information within the four priority themes of the ND: Energy & environment; Culture; Health & Social wellbeing; Transport & Logistics

The contact persons for the project management is Ms. Minna Hanhijärvi, minna.hanhijarvi(at)aalto.fi, tel. +358 505745017 and project communication Ms. Hanna-Elina Koivisto, hanna-elina.koivisto(at)aalto.fi, tel. +358403538150

Contacts for NDI coordination(link)


Improving the accessibility of the Baltic Sea Region. The kick-off conference for three EU projects

The kick-off conference for three EU projects: NSB CoReScandria 2Act and TENTacle projects was held on April 7th at Kalastajatorppa in Helsinki and gathered for about one hundred participants. These three projects start their cooperation in order to develop the EU TEN-T Core Network Corridors intersecting the Baltic Sea Region.

The project North Sea Baltic Connector of Regions, NSB CoRe is led by the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council from Finland, and  it aims to improve the sustainable accessibility of the Eastern Baltic Sea Region (EBSR) to freight and passenger transport.

The Scandria2Act is a project developing the northern sections of the Core Network Corridor from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean, prioritizing energy efficient solutions in freight and passenger transports. The TENTacle project focuses on the accessibility of peripheral regions in the Baltic Sea Region by developing their connections to the Core Network Corridors.

These three-year projects NSB CoRe, Scandria2Act and TENTacle have been approved by the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme.

To get more information about the conference and the projects, please visit Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council web page.

Improving the environment with committed stakeholders

The Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership (NDEP) has been highly successful in co-financing projects to improve wastewater treatment in North West Russia. As a result of NDEP’s 14 year cooperation with St Petersburg Vodokanal, the city is now treating 98.4% of its wastewater. NDEP grants of EUR 40 million, combined with loans of EUR 220 million from the EBRD, EIB, NIB and NEFCO have helped to leverage investments worth over EUR 860 million. Since 2011, all major wastewater treatment plants in St Petersburg have been treating wastewater in full compliance with HELCOM recommendations. NDEP has financed similar investments also in other cities in Russia to protect the fragile ecology of the Baltic and Barents Seas area.

NDPHS Strategy 2020: Promoting sustainable development in the Northern Dimension area through improving human health and social well-being

Our Northern Dimension area is facing several pressing health challenges, among them the spread of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and associated infections; the growing problem of antimicrobial resistance; the impact of non-communicable lifestyle-related diseases; social and health harm from alcohol, tobacco and illicit drug use; chronic health conditions and demographic change.

With its new Strategy 2020, the NDPHS has committed itself to help address these challenges by providing a forum for concerted action, cooperation, joint capacity-building and coordination of activities within the Northern Dimension area. An Action Plan accompanying the Strategy is just about to be adopted. It is laying out concrete actions, targets and indicators aimed to facilitate the NDPHS efforts.

NDPTL: Intermodal Transportation via Rail Baltica - a Remarkable Opportunity for Finnish Industry and Trade

A roundtable discussion within the frames of the Northern Dimension Partnership on Transport and Logistics (NDPTL)  project "Elimination of obstacles for Intermodal transportation in transit through Poland, Lithuania and Belarus" took place in Helsinki, Finland, on 26 April 2016.

The aim of the roundtable was to discuss opportunities and potential with Finnish industry and trade organisations for door-to-door or terminal-to-terminal intermodal services between Finland and mainland Europe.

For further information, please visit the NDPTL website

New transport research programme begins next year

The Research Council of Norway is launching a new 10-year transport research programme "Transport 2025". The programme begins next year.

Activities under the Transport 2025 programme will employ a systemic perspective on the transport system viewed as a whole. The programme will address transport issues related to road, rail, sea and air traffic, and include passenger as well as freight transport. In addition, the programme will address challenges facing each of the four modes of transport and the interaction between them. The transport system viewed in a unified perspective and the need for change have provided key guiding principles for a new, integrated research initiative in the area of transport.

POLARCODE increases safety in Polar waters

Maritime transport and economic activity is expected to increase in the Arctic. Arctic sea and water areas are environmentally extremely sensitive. To prevent environmental risks, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has issued a Polar Code, which is to enter in force on January 1, 2017. The code is an international binding norm addressed to vessels sailing in Northern Arctic waters and waters surrounding the Antarctica. The code presumes more rigorous safety and environmental regulations for vessels sailing in waters surrounding the two poles.

Programme: Children and Youth at Risk in the Barents region

Children and Youth at Risk in the Barents region (CYAR)

Barents Euro-Arctic Council

Children and Youth at Risk in the Barents region (CYAR) is a multilateral programme carried out in Norway and run by the Steering Committee on Youth and Children at Risk.The major goal of the Programme is to find effective solutions for common problems faced by marginal children and youth in the modern society. These problems are related to social, educational, health and other spheres of life, as well as law enforcement, unvenal crimes, etc.There are special training courses for the specialists in parents guidance based on "The Incredible Years" by Dr. Caroline Webster-Stratton.

Project MARPART2-MAN has been launched

Maritime Preparedness and International Partnership in the High North (MARPART) project will continue in frames of a new initiative - MARPART (2) –Man: Joint Task-Force Management in High North Emergency Response

The purpose of the Marpart – 2 Man project is to contribute to more competent host-nation relief support and efficient cross-border cooperation through knowledge transfer in and between competence institutions, and between these institutions and the preparedness system. The project shall also contribute to a tailor-made education and to more goal-oriented and cost-efficient training and exercise schemes.

Please find more information about the project, its activities, results, and publications on the website

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