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International Scientific Cooperation

International interaction is a precondition for high-standard research. Finland cooperates within the European Union, with other countries based on agreements and informally. In addition, organisations and individuals have their own arrangements.

Science policy cooperation in the EU
The EU is in the process of establishing a European Research Area to promote joint research and step up the use of research findings with a view to improving employment and competitiveness in Europe.

The EU finances R&D in the member countries by means of framework programmes. The EU R&D Framework Programme is an important part of Finland's international R&D cooperation. About five per cent of university research funding comes from the EU.

In Finland, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy prepares and coordinates matters relating to EU research policy. The Ministry of Education sector is responsible for matters pertaining to bio and medical sciences, environmental sciences, social sciences, basic research, researcher training and mobility, research infrastructures, research-society relations and cooperation with non-EU countries.

International research organisations and networks
International research organisations build large research equipment which no one country could afford alone, and put them at the disposal of researchers. Apart from high-standard research, these organisations carry out significant technology development.

Finland participates in the work of many international research organisations, notably

  • European Organization for Nuclear Research CERN
  • European Molecular Biology Laboratory EMBL
  • European Space Agency ESA
  • European Southern Observatory ESO
  • European Synchrotron Radiation Facility ESRF

Organisations promoting cooperation between national research systems include

  • European Science Foundation ESF
  • European cooperation in the field of scientific and technological research COST, and
  • European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures ESFRI.

Global science forums include organisations subordinate to UNESCO and OECD committees and working groups.

Research cooperation with areas adjacent to Finland include Nordic cooperation, which is expanding to the Baltic states, arctic research and cooperation with Russia. There is a specific organisation called Nordforsk to promote cooperation among the Nordic countries.