Government and ministries Media

Government’s analysis, assessment and research activities
International talent in business and industry – global best practices

Government Communications Department 15.1.2018 10.12 | Published in English on 16.1.2018 at 11.50
Press release 15/2017

Compared to many other countries, in Finland the requirements of businesses for international growth and innovation are well incorporated in the design of company practices and services aimed at international talent. This is a conclusion of a report published on 15 January 2018 by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.

The aim of the report was to establish how businesses could better deploy international talent.  A further aim was to find out how the Finnish business and industry sectors and innovation activities could be made more attractive and open to international talent. The study covered four benchmark countries: Austria, Canada, Denmark and the Netherlands.

Considering international talent from the viewpoint of business and industry is fairly new in the countries involved in the study, including Finland, and good practice guidelines for that subject area are currently under development.  The countries are competing not only for the best talent but also for the best practices to attract, integrate and maintain international talent.

“Although the needs of businesses in designing practices and services for international talent have been well considered in Finland, the services are often short-term projects and pilots with no national coordination or systematic impact analysis,” says project manager Nina Rilla from VTT.

The global practices vary a lot, but attracting and integrating international talent into business, industry and innovation communities, or society in general, is not straightforward.  According to the study, a shared vision and simultaneous actions in several administrative branches are needed to develop an effective combination of services. 

To achieve a common understanding and well-functioning service package, the report suggests that policy-makers ensure a long-term shared vision and implementation plan. The policy-makers should also clarify and mainstream the common strategic intent for the purpose of creating a roadmap. They should also see international talent as a change process in which measures are developed in cooperation with the public and private sectors and with different levels of government and administrative branches.

To support the implementation of these suggestions, the report includes nine recommendations on how to intensify the integration of international talent into the Finnish innovation economy.  

The study supports the Finnish Government's action programme Talent Boost – International Talents Boosting Growth that aims to make Finland more attractive to international talent and channel their expertise for ensuring the growth, internationalisation and innovation activities of businesses.  The Talent Boost programme is coordinated by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

The report Immigrants in the Innovation Economy – Lessons from Austria, Canada, Denmark and the Netherlands was carried out as part of the implementation of the Government's 2017 plan for analysis, assessment and research. The report was drawn up by Nina Rilla, Matthias Deschryvere, Juha Oksanen and Robert van der Have from VTT and Mika Raunio from the University of Tampere.

Immigrants in the Innovation Economy – Lessons from Austria, Canada, Denmark and the Netherlands, report

Further information on the Government’s Analysis, Assessment and Research Activities is available on the website

Inquiries: Nina Rilla, Senior Scientist, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, tel. +358 40 098 4098, nina.rilla (at) and Senior Specialist

Laura Lindeman, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 50 408 9932, laura.lindeman(at) 

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