Funding Initiative for R&D, Community Building
Country Finland
Initiative name

National Technology Agency (Tekes):

Tekes, the National Technology Agency is the main financing organisation for applied and industrial R&D in Finland. Tekes provides funding and expert services for R&D projects of companies and universities in Finland and also coordinates and financies Finnish participation in international technology initiatives. The funds are awarded from state budget via the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Tekes' funding totals EUR 400 million of which two thirds is devoted to industrial R&D. The rest is inteded for funding reserach by universities and research institutes. Tekes provides grants and risk loans to research and development that leads to internationally competitive products, production processes or services.

Technology programmes are used to promote development in specific sectors of technology or industry, and to pass on results of the research work to business in an efficient way. Technology programmes are a means for Tekes to make strategic choices and steer priorities. The programmes strengthen technologies and know-how of primary importance for Finland's future and business based on them. The programmes promote cooperation and networking between business enterprises and research units and promote technology transfer and internationalisation.

Tekes usually financies about half of the costs of programmes. The second half comes from participating companies. During 2001 12 programmes closed and 9 new programmes started. In 2000, 2 530 businesses and 920 research institutes participated in the technology programmes. 45% of Tekes its business project funding and 61% of public research project funding were channeled through technology programmes, a total of € 185 million in 2001. During 2002, a total of about 45 extensive national technology programmes are under way.

Natural language applications and retrieving, compiling and processing information were among the key programme areas in the USIX - User-Oriented Information Technology programme 1999-2002. Total funding of the USIX programme was 77 mill. euro, participating organisations included 80 companies and 45 reserach units.

Tekes launched a new Interactive Ínformation Technology programme 2003-2007 in December 2002. The new programme invests partly in the same areas as the USIX programme. The five key application areas are knowledge management applications, game and entertainment applications, network services for community building, network services for industry and service providers and mobile applications and services. E.g. language technologies, context awareness, new interface technologies and semantic web are seen as needed competence fields and enabling technologies.

Language technology projects are also funded throug other long-term programmes in the Information and Communications Technology sector, e.g. through SPIN - Software products- a launch pad for global success 2000-2003.

Tekes has bilateral cooperation agreements with several organisations abroad, ie. the University of Berkley. The Finland-Berkeley Program for Information Technology and Society was created to promote international R&D cooperation of Finnish research projects. It provides projects with a framework for successful cooperation with one of the top universities in the world. Program started 1st of February 2001.

The cooperation program facilitates and supports cooperative research projects between research groups at University of California Berkeley (UCB) and Finland. The practical content of the program are the research projects, which include visiting researchers from Finland to Berkeley or from Berkeley to Finland. The program is open to all research projects of high standard that have a partner at Berkeley committed to cooperation.

One area with strong emphasis in the Program are issues that could become central in the information society and related technologies during the next five years. These issues may be tackled with cross-disciplinary projects and projects going to totally new potential areas of research.

The projects in the framework program can be funded by Tekes, Academy of Finland , Finnish National Fund for Research and Development, companies or other financiers. The projects can be either research or corporate projects. The framework program itself does not fund the projects or guarantee funds from other financiers.

Currently running HLT related projects within the Finland-Berkley program include:

o Noise Robust Multilingual Speech Recognition, Finnish organisation is TUT (Tampere University of Technology)
o Human-Oriented, User-Driven Interactive Navigational Interface, Finnish organisation is University of Tampere
o Speech Recognition, Finnish organisation is HUT (Helsinki University of Technology)

Administerial level behind mechanism

Ministry of Trade and Industry

Budget 43 on-going technology programmes in 2002 with a total extent of 1,5 billion euro
Dates and Duration

User-Oriented Information Technology (USIX) Programme runs from 1999 - 2002

Interactive Information Technology Programme runs from 2003 - 2007

Centres and Industrials Involved .
Website and contact details



Interactive Information Technology Programme:

Finland-Berkeley Program for Information Technology and Society:

Results and Outcomes .Evaluating technology programmes:

Technology Programmes' Results: