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VTT team shows how the GTAP model will be used in the forest-based bioeconomy foresight project in Uruguay

August 16, 2017 Leave a comment

IMG_2181The forest-based (or wood-based) bioeconomy is an important sub-sector of the overall bioeconomy. In countries with an abundant forest resources the economic magnitude of forests in bioeconomy is high, for example in Finland, roughly half of total bioeconomy output. The countries with substantial forest resources and related advanced scientific and technological competences have good opportunities to play a role of forerunner in the modern future oriented bioeconomy.

In the context of the Forest-based Bioeconomy Areas in Uruguay by 2050 project VTT is leading with the support of the Office of Planning and Budgeting (OPP) of Uruguay and several representatives from government, business, research and civil society actors, Dr. Juha Honkatukia and Dr. Rafael Popper showed how the GTAP model can be used to identify future bioeconomy policy options for Uruguay.

Finnish experience on using modelling to support strategic planning

The session gives several examples on the use of economic modelling in the analyses of policies to boost the development of bioeconomy in Finland, ranging from the national energy and climate strategies to assessment of the viability and regional consequences of biorefineries.

GTAP model

The session on the GTAP model will cover the structure of the model and its core databases with emphasis on the applicability of the model on single-country analyses. As the GTAP data base covers bilateral trade on dozens of commodities and over a hundred countries, the session will also facilitate a discussion on the necessary aggregation of the basic data.

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Paying respect to Tomasz Kośmider at his official farewell

August 3, 2017 Leave a comment

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Thanks to the Kośmider family for letting me and my wife share our feelings about a great human being who will always be remembered in Poland, Europe and the world

Dear family members, friends and colleagues of very much loved and respected Tomasz Kośmider,

We are speaking here today, because we were fortunate to have spent quality time (professionally and personally) with Tomasz, his son Przemek and friends from Technology Partners. For this reason, we were asked to be the voice of many European colleagues who are with us in spirit; especially those from Knowledge4Innovation, of which Tomasz was Vice President.

Without any doubts, we can say that Tomasz transformed many lives.
The extent of his legacy is yet to be written and told in years to come.
We will always remember him as a warm man full of vitality and wisdom.
Someone who was equally determined and successful in building bridges.
Bridges enabling cross-sector and cross-border innovations and aspirations.

His positive attitude helped him find opportunities in barriers and challenges.
His dynamism, enthusiasm and humour were equally addictive and contagious.
His creativity, leadership and determination often translated into shared visions.
His kindness and compassion allowed him to make a difference and in a kind way. Tomasz could see bright and promising futures for Poland and Europe in many ways.

Science may never explain why humans exist and whether there is life after life.
For this reason, we would like to share our own, yet transferable philosophy of life. We do not consider physical departure from our body as ‘death’ or the end of a journey. People’s wonderful and unique spirit shall be relaunched into new dimensions fuelled by our energy. Therefore, we invite you to empower Tomasz with your best thoughts, memories and lessons learned.

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International Seminar on Foresight and Sustainable Innovation at UNIVALLE (Cali, Colombia)

July 13, 2017 Leave a comment

In the context of Universidad del Valle (UNIVALLE)’s efforts to further improve its research excellence (currently Top 3 in the country according to U-Sapiens ranking),  an International Seminar on Foresight and Sustainable Innovation took place in Cali on 13-14 July 2017.

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The seminar was organised by Dr. Javier Medina Vásquez (Vice-Rector for Research of UNIVALLE) and attended by some 30 senior researchers, academics and postgraduate students. The main purpose of the seminar was twofold:

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Lecture based on EU-SPRI Vienna Conference paper by Hyytinen, Kallio & Popper (2017)

As the CASI project ended in June 2017, the seminar was fully funded by UNIVALLE in the spirit of strengthening linkages with VTT´s Business, Innovation and Foresight (BIF) Research Area and the scientific coordinators of the CASI Tutorial.

The success of the seminar can be measured by the fact that practically all participants completed the full course with a score of 80% or above in the self-assessment tasks, which resulted in most of them receiving a certificate of outstanding completion.

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Certificate of Outstanding Completion

Furthermore, the news about the online course spread throughout Colombia with the participation of researchers and students from other universities such as Universidad Nacional de Colombia (Bogotá), Universidad Javeriana (Bogotá), Universidad Antonio Nariño (Bogotá), Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia (Medellín), Universidad del Rosario (Bogotá), among others. As a result, Colombia now stands in 1st position in terms number of participants and certificates on ‘Sustainable Innovation Assessment and Management’.

See list of course participants (as of 4 September 2017)

Colombia 86
Bulgaria 43
Portugal 22
Poland 19
Czech Republic 18
Peru 15
Austria 12
Italy 10
United Kingdom 10
Germany 6
Finland 5
Mexico 3
Belgium 2
France 2
Korea South 2
Slovenia 2
Spain 2
Tanzania 2
Argentina 1
Burkina Faso 1
Cyprus 1
Denmark 1
Ecuador 1
Egypt 1
Greece 1
Japan 1
Kyrgyzstan 1
Luxembourg 1
Panama 1
Romania 1
Singapore 1
Tajikistan 1
Venezuela 1
Total 276
Completed 107

Seminar on Foresight and Sustainable Innovation at La Molina (Peru)

July 7, 2017 Leave a comment

In the context of an intense knowledge transfer and networking agenda in Peru, the National Agrarian University La Molina organised a Seminar on the ART of Foresight and Sustainable Innovation (7 July 2017).

The seminar was attended by around 300 participants interested in European Commission efforts to address the societal challenge of ‘climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials’. To this end, the seminar focused on the recently published report on CASI-F: Common Framework for the Assessment and Management of Sustainable Innovation (Popper et al., 2017) and ways in which foresight fundamentals and processes can be systematically applied to anticipate, recommend, transform and evaluate sustainable futures.

The closing remarks from Dr. Victor Guevara (Professor at La Molina) highlighted several areas in which VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and the National Agrarian University La Molina could collaborate in the near future.

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High-level foresight and innovation seminar at CIP (Lima, Peru)

July 7, 2017 Leave a comment

High-level Foresight and Innovation Seminar was organised on July 7th by the National College of Engineers of Peru – Colegio de Ingenieros del Perú (CIP).

The seminar was chaired by Eng. Javier Arrieta (Dean of CIP) and Eng. Isaias Quevedo.  The high-level discussions targeted a selected group of stakeholders from the quadruple helix of sustainable innovation actors in Peru, including business, government, academia and civil society representatives.

The seminar consisted of two main blocks. In the first block Dr. Rafael Popper (Principal Scientist in Business, Innovation and Foresight at VTT) provided a panoramic overview of VTT’s foresight research and innovation activities followed by three keynote lectures on:

  1. Sustainable innovation priorities in the context of the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme’s societal challenge on ‘Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials’
  2. State-of-the-art of sustainable innovations assessment and management framework (CASI-F)
  3. Understanding foresight fundamentals and processes

The second block allowed seminar participants to share experiences and brainstorm on future opportunities for joint projects between VTT, CIP and other stakeholders from the Peruvian science, technology and innovation system.

At the end of the seminar Dr. Popper received two institutional recognitions for his contributions to foresight activities in Peru. The first was a special ‘CIP Edition’ of Peruvian national liquor (Pisco) and the second was an engraved golden plaque from the National University of Engineering (UNI).

International Foresight and Innovation Seminar at UNFV (Lima, Peru)

July 6, 2017 Leave a comment

IMG_9390_h.jpgAn International Seminar on ‘Technology Foresight, Entrepreneurship and Innovation for Sustainable Systemic Transformation‘ was organised on July 6th by the National University Federico Villarreal (UNFV) in Lima, Peru.

The seminar was chaired by Dr. Juan Alfaro Bernedo (Rector of UNFV) together with Dr. Víctor Pinto De La Sota Silva (Academic Vice-Rector), Dr. Carlos Tello Malpartida (Research Vice-Rector) and Dr. María Renee Alfaro Bardales (Director of Postgraduate Studies at UNFV).

The event was structured around two main blocks: The first block consisted of a three-hour seminar in which Dr. Rafael Popper (Principal Scientist in Business, Innovation and Foresight at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland) delivered the following five keynote presentations:

  1. Foresight research and innovation at VTT
  2. The future of research and innovation policy
  3. Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Innovation
  4. CASI-F approach to the Assessment and Management of Sustainable Innovation
  5. Co-creating shared research and innovation agendas

The first block of the seminar gathered over 500 participants at the UNFV’s main auditorium and due to its high demand the presentations were also web-streamed live in a Facebook channel viewed by 1.7K members of the UNFV community.

The second block was in the form of an expert roundtable moderated by Rodolfo Chávez Gallo (Professor at UNFV) and integrated by Rafael Popper and four national experts: Edwin Dextre Jara (National University of Engineering), Víctor Guevara Carrasco (National University of Agriculture La Molina), Ricardo Rodríguez Ulloa (Andean Systems Institute) and Fernando Ortega San Martín (Peruvian Association of Innovation Professionals).

During the roundtable discussions there was a general consensus that the moment was ripe enough for Peruvian universities to join forces in the consolidation of a national foresight network capable of promoting sustainable innovation in Peru. The second block of the seminar was also web-streamed in the UNFV’s Facebook channels and viewed by 1K people. In addition, the video was also shared and viewed by 150+ people via YouTube.

Passion spurs research

October 5, 2016 Leave a comment
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Kentaro Watanabe (left), Timo Aalto (centre) and Rafael Popper (right)

VTT’s researchers are spurred by passion for their research area, by their good working environment, and by interaction with other researchers. In addition, many just want to make the world a little better. Click here to continue reading this article in VTT Impulse Magazine