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Finland
About Finnish society & culture. From snow to sauna, from natives to Nokia.
Curated by Ulla M. Saikku
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Finnish diplomat pushes child-rearing for dads

Finnish diplomat pushes child-rearing for dads | Finland | Scoop.it

For Finnish diplomat Mikko Koivumaa, being an ikumen (men who take an active role in ikuji, or child rearing) comes naturally.

Hailing from a country known to have a high level of gender equality, Koivumaa says ikumen is standard practice in Finland.

“In Finland, there’s a social welfare policy that enables that. Also men work short hours — especially compared with Japan — which enables an ikumen lifestyle seven days a week,” the 36-year-old said.

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Why Nordic nations are a role model for us all

Why Nordic nations are a role model for us all | Finland | Scoop.it
Scandinavia is officially hot. In a recent issue, The Economist crowned the Nordic economic experience as a “supermodel.” Last month, the New Yorkercelebrated Denmark’s hugely successful noir fiction and the egalitarian society behind it as something of a “post-modern” paradise. While these characterizations may be accurate, America and other advanced democracies can be forgiven for dismissing the case of these small, wealthy economies in a remote corner of Europe as an extravagant exception. Not so: the real secret of the Nordic performance is applicable to all, for it is a paradigm of enlightened self-interest at its finest. 
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Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, February 11, 2013 6:35 PM

There is somethings to learn from and share between everyone on this planet. Here's some things the far north brings to the world.

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The next supermodel - Politicians from both right and left could learn from the Nordic countries

The next supermodel - Politicians from both right and left could learn from the Nordic countries | Finland | Scoop.it

SMALLISH countries are often in the vanguard when it comes to reforming government. In the 1980s Britain was out in the lead, thanks to Thatcherism and privatisation. Tiny Singapore has long been a role model for many reformers. Now the Nordic countries are likely to assume a similar role.

That is partly because the four main Nordics—Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland—are doing rather well. If you had to be reborn anywhere in the world as a person with average talents and income, you would want to be a Viking. The Nordics cluster at the top of league tables of everything from economic competitiveness to social health to happiness. They have avoided both southern Europe’s economic sclerosis and America’s extreme inequality. Development theorists have taken to calling successful modernisation “getting to Denmark”. Meanwhile a region that was once synonymous with do-it-yourself furniture and Abba has even become a cultural haven, home to “The Killing”, Noma and “Angry Birds”.

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Finland - the world's least failed state - Failed States Index - FP Foreign Policy

Finland - the world's least failed state - Failed States Index - FP Foreign Policy | Finland | Scoop.it

In recent years, Finland has grown accustomed to coming out on top in various international rankings. Be it student performance (Program for International Student Assessment, 2003, 2006, 2009), happiness (Gallup World Poll, 2010), competitiveness (World Economic Forum, 2000-2011), or simply being the best country in the world (Newsweek, 2010), we have been at or near the top. In the Failed States Index, however, we are more than happy to find ourselves at the very bottom -- as the world's least failed state.

 

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Society: The only way is Finland

Society: The only way is Finland | Finland | Scoop.it
America may once have been the Land of Opportunity, but thanks to its rising levels of inequality – not to mention the nightmarish visa restrictions – our political class now has another destination in mind. 

"If you want the American Dream, go to Finland."

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Finntown’s slice of the Big Apple - thisisFINLAND: Life & society: Society

Finntown’s slice of the Big Apple - thisisFINLAND: Life & society: Society | Finland | Scoop.it
Once upon a time, New York had two Finnish neighbourhoods – Finntowns. We talk to a couple who used to live in one.
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Empowering women: Finnish experience - Arab News

..."What transformed Finland from a poor, disunited and underdeveloped country into a stable democracy was to a large extent the social reform program that was launched after the civil war. Women played prominent roles in exposing the social evils that had to be tackled and in finding the means by which to address them. They were able to bring these issues up for discussion in the media but also as parliamentarians. Women had gained the right to vote and the right to stand for election in 1906 as first in the world — largely thanks to the tireless efforts by the men and women activists in the women's rights movement."

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DR. ERKKI TUOMIOJA
Nov 20, 2011 00:33

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What happened to Finland’s information society?

What happened to Finland’s information society? | Finland | Scoop.it
There was much talk of the information society around the end of the last millennium. Especially in Finland as we were often considered to be the model country for its development. Finland was at the forefront both in terms of internet connections and of the number of mobile phones. We were home to plenty of world-class IT companies such as Nokia and the Linux operating system. It seemed certain that Finland would continue to show the world the way into the 2000s as well.
So what happened?
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Immigration policy to focus on security

Immigration policy to focus on security | Finland | Scoop.it
Immigration policy is to shift emphasis towards safeguarding security in society, says new Interior Minister Päivi Räsänen. She told YLE radio that immigration policy would now shift to officials in charge of policing.
“Immigration policy will respect basic human rights, but the other thread running through policy will be security and sustainability in society,” said the Christian Democrat. “How many immigrants we can integrate into society.”
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SUMMER RECESS FROM THURSDAY

SUMMER RECESS FROM THURSDAY | Finland | Scoop.it
Though there can be exceptions, July is not traditionally a very "hard" news month in Finland, neither in politics nor in business life, as the country tends to go on holiday from the Midsummer or Juhannus weekend and Finland is more or less "closed" for the duration.
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Heikki Hiilamo: Uusi hyvinvointivaltio [The new welfare state] - Books from Finland

Heikki Hiilamo: Uusi hyvinvointivaltio [The new welfare state] - Books from Finland | Finland | Scoop.it
There is concern in Finland about the decline of the Nordic welfare state and the return of a class society. Problems exist with regard to issues such as the country’s aging population, changes in the structure of the labour market, the increase in income disparity, and lifestyle issues. The impoverishment caused by the recession of the 1990s did not decrease in the early 2000s, as could be seen in things like the rise of bread lines, much debated by Finns.
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About 25,000 young people live “outside society”

About 25,000 young people live “outside society” | Finland | Scoop.it
About 25,000 young people with only a comprehensive school education are out of reach of society. The number is greater than that of young people who are classified as unemployed. If the unskilled jobless are included, the figure reaches 40,000.
Those who have fallen on the wayside do not work or study, but they have also not registered as unemployed. They are not on pension, in institutions, or in the Defence Forces. Society does not actually know where they are and what they live on.
Included in the group are only those who have not continued their education beyond comprehensive school. Also excluded are those who are taking care of a child of their own. Those who have completed upper secondary school, but are hanging out somewhere in the world are also excluded.
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The Finnish National Board of Education - Education and the Finnish society

Finland has built up an education system whose characteristics consist of uniformity, free education, school meals and special education by using the principle of inclusion. Typical of Finland are very small differences between schools, which may be explained by the definition of admission areas and the lack of ranking lists and thus by the even distribution of good teachers between schools. Finnish society has a very positive attitude to education. 73 % of the 25-64-year olds have at least gained a certificate from upper secondary level and 33 % (the highest in the EU) have had a university or corresponding education. The completion of basic education is a prerequisite for further studies. Only slightly more than one percent of the age group does not receive a comprehensive school leaving certificate. According to research more than half of these drop-outs will later in one way or another receive it and possibly also a further certificate.

In Finland school administrators very much cooperate with teachers’, subject teachers’ and headmasters’ associations. In this way measures to develop education receive strong support.
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State of the World's Mothers

State of the World's Mothers | Finland | Scoop.it

In honor of Mother's Day, Save the Children presents 14th annual State of the World's Mothers report. It is a report that ranks the best and worst places in the world to be a mother. Learn more, access archives and download the report. FINLAND - NR 1 ! The BEST!

 

THE BEST & WORST PLACES TO BE A MOTHER

The chances a mother and her baby will survive help determine Save the Children’s annual rankings of the best and worst places in the world to be a mother. Education, income and political representation of women are the other factors. 

Read more: http://bit.ly/12cP0yU

 

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Linda Alexander's curator insight, May 7, 2013 2:18 AM

For very little money, many more babies could survive their births.  There are over a million babies that die each year that could be saved by using very inexpensive treatments and medicines.  

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More for less

More for less | Finland | Scoop.it

IN “THE LION AND THE UNICORN”, written in 1941, George Orwell invoked the spirit of England in a handful of images—“solid breakfasts and gloomy Sundays, smoky towns and windy roads, green fields and red pillar-boxes”. When this correspondent tried to summon up appropriate images for the spirit of the Nordic region he found himself turning to the welfare state: Swedish fathers enjoying a leisurely lunch while their children sleep in prams (Sweden’s paternity leave is among the most generous in the world); Danish mothers cycling, helmetless, through the early morning mist with their children in sidecars (Copenhagen has more than 350km of cycle lanes, and a third of the population cycles to work); a Finnish physics teacher discussing the nature of elegance with a class of 15-year-olds (Finland regularly comes near the top of international league tables for educational attainment).

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Northern lights - The Nordic countries are reinventing their model of capitalism

Northern lights - The Nordic countries are reinventing their model of capitalism | Finland | Scoop.it

THIRTY YEARS AGO Margaret Thatcher turned Britain into the world’s leading centre of “thinking the unthinkable”. Today that distinction has passed to Sweden. The streets of Stockholm are awash with the blood of sacred cows. The think-tanks are brimful of new ideas. The erstwhile champion of the “third way” is now pursuing a far more interesting brand of politics....

Ulla M. Saikku's insight:

...Finland is harnessing the skills of venture capitalists and angel investors to promote innovation and entrepreneurship.


...The Nordic countries have a collective population of only 26m. Finland is the only one of them that is a member of both the European Union and the euro area.

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Finland winning the rankings race

Finland winning the rankings race | Finland | Scoop.it

Over the years, Finland and Finns have excelled in many areas and Finland has been at the top of many international rankings. Among others, Finland has been named the best country to live in (Newsweek 2010), Finland has been nominated the home to some of world’s happiest people (UN First World Happiness Report 2012) and, according to Monocle’s 2011 Quality of Life survey, Helsinki is the best city to live in...

 

[Embassy of Finland, Washington - Consulate Generals of Finland, New York, Los Angeles : Current Affairs] 

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Helsingin Sanomat - International Edition - Is the class society making a comeback?

Helsingin Sanomat - International Edition - Is the class society making a comeback? | Finland | Scoop.it

Class differences may be staging a comeback in a new guise: income disparity, globalisation, and rapid changes in working life increase uncertainty and build fences ever more obviously.

 

”We live in a hit-or-miss society. The security framework that once existed is no more. A Master’s degree no longer guarantees anything. The only message that I have for my students is that coincidence keeps reaping its harvest”, says historian and class researcher Laura Kolbe from the University of Helsinki...

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Finns lead world in broadband access

Finns lead world in broadband access | Finland | Scoop.it

While universal broadband access is a goal being sought by many developed countries, including Canada, it's the law in Finland.

"Citizens without access to broadband services cannot take advantage of information society services," said Suvi Linden, former minister of communications in Finland who authored the groundbreaking legislation which passed July 1, 2010.

"It is no longer a luxury product but a necessary tool for everyday life," said Linden, now a member of a United Nations broadband commission.

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On gender in kindergarden, diversity in Finnish society and other ...

On gender in kindergarden, diversity in Finnish society and other ... | Finland | Scoop.it
Today I attended a presentation by Sara Sundell, who has worked on a two-year project on gender equality in Finnish Kindergardens. The main questions that came up was how we see, judge and respond to children ...
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Postal lifeline for remote Finnish isles - thisisFINLAND: Life & society: Society

Postal lifeline for remote Finnish isles - thisisFINLAND: Life & society: Society | Finland | Scoop.it

Read our newest story on archipelago postman, who delivers post in all weathers.

“I deliver the post five times weekly all year round,” explains Simberg. “To make this possible in all conditions I need many different kinds of transportation, including a hydrocopter, a snowmobile, an all-terrain-vehicle, a kick-sledge, skis and ice-skates!”

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Travelwise: Why are Finns so happy?

Travelwise: Why are Finns so happy? | Finland | Scoop.it
Finland – despite its long stretches of darkness and high suicide rate– was named the second happiest country by a Gallup survey. And are depression and happiness connected?
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Blog: Guide to doing business in Finland

Blog: Guide to doing business in Finland | Finland | Scoop.it
Finland represents an attractive option when looking for new markets, or when choosing which of your markets you should retain. Below are some of the issue you should keep in mind when doing business in and with Finland to help you fit into and be conscious of the Finnish culture. It is important to consider that if you were to accidentally stray from any of these cultural guidelines it is not likely to have a major impact on your business relationship, but in difficult markets where minor detail will make the difference, the more you can stick to these guidelines the better.
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24 Hours Vancouver: Finns put public first

24 Hours Vancouver: Finns put public first | Finland | Scoop.it
Finland is a welfare state with a concept of government in which the state plays a key role in the protection and promotion of the social well-being of its citizens. It was founded on the principles of equality of opportunity, equitable distribution of wealth, and public responsibility for those unable to avail themselves of the minimal provisions for a good life.

How does it do it, how can the Finns afford their utopia? In Finland, tax isn't a swear word, rather it is considered to be a necessity for a civilized society.
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Pardon My Finnish

Pardon My Finnish | Finland | Scoop.it
A new post on "Pardon My Finnish": "The biggest disease of them all is the growing income inequality” http://blog.finnish-institute.org.uk/...

I quite often find that in Finland we want to believe that it is still 1988 and that we live in a welfare state with a broad set of measures preventing the polarisation of society. In fact, we are moving at increasing speed towards a harsher society, where economic differences are accompanied by social problems, and where good health is a luxury for those who can afford it. At the conference it also became evident that the Finnish healthcare system needs reform.
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