Innovation is a knowledge-based competitive edge, used to the benefit of business, society and well-being.
Innovation can comprise
- application of new knowledge, competencies or technology
- a new product, technical solution, production process
- a new expert service
- a new design or brand
- a new business operating model, value chain or value network
- new working practices, organisation or management model
- a public service realised in a new way.
Competence-based competitive advantages are chiefly employed in support of the national economy and securing well-being, by boosting business' competitiveness and growth. However, innovations also prove beneficial in the fields of business economics, behavioural science, and cultural, health and social studies.
Strong, diverse competencies will improve Finland's competitive edge in the world economy. More diverse capabilities exhibited in science and technology, business models, service solutions, design and the way in which work and production are organised, will form the basis of such a competitive edge. In the inception of innovations, skilled people and close-knit innovation communities are crucial. Indeed, innovations are most often the fruit of new combinations of competencies crossing industry and disciplinary boundaries.
Public sector measures can be used to shape the prerequisites of and incentives for innovation, while ensuring that the innovation environment functions well. If a broad-based innovation policy is to be implemented, public sector actors must cooperate on a broad basis, through versatile combinations of policy measures such as the streamlining of public services and the creation of regional innovation clusters. Innovation policy forms part of the national industrial policy.