Newsletters 2013

Newsletter 4/2013

Season’s Greetings from Forum Virium Helsinki
Forum Virium Helsinki wishes Merry Christmas and a Successful New Year 2014! We also want to thank all our collaborators on highly fruitful cooperation during 2013. Read more >>>

Stormwind Simulator victorious in the Open Data Innovation Contest Apps4Finland
The winners of the annual Apps4Finland contest have been awarded. Apps4Finland has stimulated again creative & inspiring ways of utilizing open data. Read more >>>

The Guardian: “Helsinki, a truly Smart City”
The respected Guardian has featured two articles on the importance of holistic approach to Smart City planning. The city of Helsinki has been highlighted as an example of a truly Smart City, which other cities should follow. Read more >>>

Joint strategy of Finland’s six largest cities
The six largest cities in Finland join their forces to enable better services and new business. The network has been chosen to implement the national sustainable urban development strategy.
Read more >>>

Open Source Co-operation Platform for Citizens
A new initiative called D-CENT will provide free digital tools for social movements, civic innovators and civil society groups for direct democracy and economic empowerment. It’s an open, decentralised and non-commercial alternative for non-profit sector to organize its activities. This EU-funded project started in late 2013. Read more >>>

Helsinki Region Infoshare’s Open Data publication now available in English
Now also in English: Helsinki Region Infoshare’s publication providing stimuli for unlocking public data. The publication describes how Open Data has made its breakthrough in the public administration in Finland and gives numerous examples of how public data actually has been made open. Read more >>>

Pre-commercial procurement process of SILVER project has started
The phase 1 of the SILVER Pre-Commercial Procurement process is enrolling. During this phase, the successful tenderers verify the technical, economic & organizational feasibility of their ideas. By the completion of the entire SILVER project, there will be a fully documented PCP process, capable of being run as a joint cross-border PCP Call for Tender within the different participating countries of the project.

Children’s Statistical Yearbook in Support of Pupils’ Wellbeing
The Children’s Statistical Yearbook is a concept that aims to inspire children to examine their daily life and to produce data on it by utilizing statistical methods. Several schools in Helsinki have been piloting the Yearbook and their experiences have been positive. Read more >>>

How to keep talents in the Baltic Sea Region
How to attract and keep international talents, students and professionals in the Baltic Sea area was the topic of the 3rd ONE BSR Policy Round Table discussion held in Gdansk, Poland, in October. Experts and young talents were brought to the same table to discuss the challenges of keeping international talents in the area, and finding solutions for better co-operation.
Read more >>>

400 000€ in prizes in Europe’s biggest app challenge
Do you have an innovative idea for an app for Smart Cities or Smart SMEs? 400 000€ in prizes will be awarded for these themes in Europe’s biggest app challenge. Deadline for competition entries is the 20th of December. Read more >>>

HRI as a finalist in the Eurocities 2013 Awards
The Eurocities Awards recognized outstanding achievement in improving the quality of life for citizens. Helsinki Region Infoshare was a finalist in the competition. Read more >>>

Newsletter 3/2013

Apps4Finland Contest 2013 public voting period begins
Apps4Finland, organized now for the fifth time, is an open data innovation contest. All the entries for the contest have now been collected and the jury will start its work on November 11th. The public voting period commences at the same time and everyone can cast a vote for their favourite entries.Read more >>>

Launching the Kalasatama Smart City Living Lab
Kalasatama is as smart as they come – and green to the core. This emerging district is Finland’s key smart urban construction project and in the following year, Forum Virium Helsinki is managing Fiksu Kalasatama -project. The aim of the project is to ramp up the living lab activities in the area as well as create a “kick-off” smart city development project portfolio to be run in the area. Read more >>>

Better daily life for the elderly with care management
For the elderly, a clear service system and easy accessibility to services are the factors that best support living at home independently. User-driven service models in the services for the elderly (KÄPI) is a project piloting new kind of care management and so-called personal budgeting in collaboration with the Department of Social Services and Health Care of the City of Helsinki.

Forum Virium Helsinki strengthens international networks
Forum Virium Helsinki is now a member of EBN, a European joint venture of business and innovation centers. The network offers its members information about international projects and programs. It helps businesses to start international cooperation and projects. Read more >>>

”FixMyStreet” service in active use in Helsinki
Citizens of Helsinki can report non-emergency issues, such as potholes and broken street signs to the City of Helsinki using a new service. Helsinki’s “FixMyStreet” service was opened last March, and it received positive feedback both from the media and citizens. “FixMyStreet” is the first service to utilize the open issue reporting API opened by the City of Helsinki.

Growth Coaching Helps in Launching New Products
Etevä Tietopalveluyhtiö has great expectations for its new Koho software that makes life easier in businesses. Launching the company’s first own software product is boosted by Forum Virium Helsinki’s Growth Coaching. The coaching offers innovative companies concrete help in developing their business.

E2C Book out now – focusing on connectedness
Europe faces the challenge of preventing loneliness and isolation amongst a growing group of senior people. While working in the field of technology and aging, the Express to Connect project consortium discovered that there is a whole new field to be explored, namely the phenomenon of connectedness.
Based on this finding, the consortium wrote a book on designing for connectedness which answers the question how to support behavioural change that increases connectedness in day-to-day routines.Read more >>>

Call for new bloggers from the Baltic Sea Region
New bloggers wanted! If you live in the Baltic Sea Region and you are a skilled writer, this is your chance. We are especially looking for photo- and video-bloggers who want to post about their daily lives and share their views on a regular basis in the ONE BSR blog, but all applicants are welcome.Read more >>>

Summer school focused on smarter and more creative cities
The summer school of the European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL) network discussed smart and creative cities. Forum Virium Helsinki was involved in activating the open data ambassadors. We also presented the Open311 feedback interface to be advocated in the CitySDK project, which is a fine example of a participation channel for citizens. Read more >>>

Newsletter 2/2013

Finnish open data service wins European Commission prize for innovation
Helsinki Region Infoshare project is the winner of the 100.000 € European Prize for Innovation in Public Administration.
Read more >>>

Open data innovation contest Apps4Finland boosts the clock speed of the Finnish society
The annual Apps4Finland contest, just opened for the fifth time, is looking for creative and inspiring ways of utilizing open data. The renewed 2013 contest will focus on supporting the culture of data-driven collaborative problem solving.
Travel card doubles as a library card
Helsinki City Library and Forum Virium Helsinki have been testing the use of Helsinki Region Transport HSL travel card as a library card since the beginning of April. The popularity of the experiment and its results exceeded all expectations.
Interactive screens as city guides in Helsinki
Helsinki citizens and visiting travelers can now read news and get information about their surroundings through interactive screens situated on the streets of central Helsinki. The map-based service transmits news and information on current events, while also pointing out locations of public transportation stops.
Open Helsinki – Hack at Home program aims for transparent city
Open Helsinki – Hack at Home program encourages developers to create useful applications. The underlying themes of the program are transparency of the city decision-making and enabling better feedback from the citizens to the city.
City of Helsinki’s issue reporting API open for developers
City of Helsinki’s issue reporting API is open for developers since May 2013. The issue reporting API utilizes the Open311 standard.
Helsinki loves developers
Steps towards achieving the world’s most developer-friendly city community were taken in the Helsinki Loves Developers –developer meeting on May 14th.
FixMyStreet mobile application in Helsinki
Metro newspaper has published a FixMyStreet mobile web application. People in Helsinki can now report non-emergency issues such as broken streetlights by using their smartphones.
SILVER Call for tender now closed
The SILVER project searches for new technologies to assist elderly people in their everyday lives by utilizing Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP). Pre-Commercial Procurement is a competition-like procurement method, which so far has been an under-utilized tool for promoting innovation in Europe.
Digital Tourism Workshop
The Digital Tourism Workshop focused on how to boost the amount of relevant tourism information available for the visitors of Helsinki, with the help of open data and new digital services, such as mobile applications.

Newsletter 1/2013

Helsinki pilots a new feedback channel
City of Helsinki and Metro Magazine together with Forum Virium Helsinki are piloting a new issue-reporting channel that enables citizens to give feedback on the faults they have observed in the public environments.
Read more >>>

Active aging: Open call for robotic based pre-commercial solutions
The pan-European SILVER project aims to demonstrate how public services can be rejuvenated by procuring R&D services, that will develop higher quality and more sustainable elderly care solutions.
Code for Europe Fellows: transparency and agility into the IT development of the city of Helsinki
The Code for Europe Fellows have started their work to make public data open, utilize freely accessible tools and build online services for citizens, and to promote the utilization of freely accessible development tools.
Opening up City of Helsinki’s decision making data: Open Ahjo
City of Helsinki wants to serve citizens and developers better by opening access to its decision making information. This is done by opening up the city’s case management system Ahjo.
Express to Connect proudly presents: Storyville games available now in AppStore
All three storytelling games developed during the last year of the E2C project are now available in AppStore. These games stimulate and facilitate social connectedness among elderly people empowering them and enriching their lives.
BlindSquare victorious also in the Global Mobile World Awards
BlindSquare, an augmented reality app, that uses audio technology and crowd sourced open data to help blind people get around their cities, has been victorious in many application competitions since winning the Apps4Finland Application category. BlindSquare won the first prize in the Global Mobile Awards Best Mobile Health Product or Service category.
Interactive city screens inspired citizens to vote
Six architectural concepts to have advanced to stage two in the architectural competition for the design of the new Helsinki Central Library, were on display at an exhibition, online and on city screens. Interactive city screens, located in several locations around Helsinki, proved to be the most popular way to cast a vote for one’s favourite concept.
Cities across Europe opening their data
Cities all around Europe are opening their data. Culture and transport are the first applications using public open data resources.
Forum Virium Helsinki now an affiliate partner of EIT ICT Labs
Forum Virium Helsinki has become an affiliate partner of the EIT ICT Labs. The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is an independent body of the European Union. The EIT has been set up to address Europe’s innovation gap and one of its key goals is to help transform innovative ideas into products and services that create sustainable growth and jobs.
First ONE BSR film is out there
Searching for the identity of Baltic Sea Region – the first ONE BSR film is now online, watch it here.
Improve the competitiveness of your business with Growth Coaching
Growth Coaching supports Helsinki based small and medium sized innovative companies which aim for growth and and international business. The next deadlines for the year 2013 are: 5th May and  25th August.