Academic Entrepreneurship

The University of Helsinki and Demos Helsinki run a project called Yliopistolainen yrittäjyys (Academic entrepreneurship).

The first phase of the project from spring 2012 to spring 2013 experimented on how to encourage university students and young researchers to take up entrepreneurial activity that provides solutions to the wicked problems of society. Learning through practice and open development formed the core of this activity. The Tieteestä toimintaa (Action from science) network, a pioneer group composed of students, was born. Numerous events were held, a boot camp trip to Amsterdam, Utrecht and Copenhagen that triggered the birth of eight new companies took place, pitch nights were organised and mentor teams for the new companies were put together out of university alumni. In spring 2013 we released a publication that draws upon our experience in the project.

In the fall of 2013 the project reached a phase that focuses on developing a common vision of entrepreneurship and weaving different actors together into an ecosystem that supports business initiatives. In the spring of 2013 the University of Helsinki together with the City of Helsinki founded an open entrepreneurial community called the Helsinki Think Company. The aim now is to develop and foster its efforts to create and support entrepreneurship arising from academic knowledge.