Blog / 15.05.2017

The key ingredients of an intelligent city

Janne Mustonen Key Account Director / ICT and Nano BusinessOulu

Cities can become smarter by fostering trust and co-operation between themselves, local industries and research institutions.


The city of Oulu is the birthplace of more than a hundred mobile phone models. A city where first consumer smart wearables were made almost 40 years before the term was coined. A place that seems to breed innovation especially after the cold and dark winter has set in. A hub that has created technologies which are used daily by nearly 3 billion people. An ecosystem where dozens of companies continue to design handsets and smart wearables for both their own brands and global customers.


It is where product development units of leading chipset makers are working on variety of modems, sensors and processors required by the Internet of Things – in ever-smaller designs. Where forward-looking banks are today drawing on the local DNA to develop the services of tomorrow. Where 5G networks – and the astonishing data transfer rates, effective zero latency and superior reliability they offer – are already partly available for testing in, for example, a hospital environment.

A hub that has created technologies used daily by nearly 3 billion people


The region has served not only as a hotbed for product development activity but also as a springboard for countless technology startups.

It has gained an edge over the competition over the past almost half-a-century by fostering a community where local authorities, companies and research institutions work together towards a common roadmap. Co-operate on a daily basis while trusting each other fully. Participate in fostering the common good while building an edge in the global market. 


Does it sound like a utopia? Perhaps it does. But for us in Oulu – a city that has twice been selected as the smartest city in Europe – it is a natural part of our daily life. Oulu-based high technology firms offer unlimited opportunities for launching a successful international career – in an environment where the cost of living is hardly anything, and where the stunning surrounding nature provides a calming backdrop to the hustle and bustle of the city.


It is never too late to become an Oululainen.


Janne Mustonen takes care of the wellbeing of large and small ICT companies in the Oulu ecosystem by designing and delivering the best BusinessOulu services to ICT companies.