Research activities

Martti Ahtisaari Institute focuses on challenges of sustainable and responsible businesses, as well as functioning of the global markets and economy as a whole. The goal of the institute´s research and development activities is to produce new scientifically rigorous and relevant knowledge and foster innovations. 


  • Professor Timo Koivumäki (digital service business)
  • Research Professor Minna Pikkarainen (VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and University of Oulu: connected health services). This professorhip is funded also by the city of Oulu
  • Director, Professor Veikko Seppänen (digital business)
  • Leader of the Futuralis research group, Adjunct Professor Petri Ahokangas (software business)

Research groups and doctoral researchers

The institute provides funds in its target area for selected research groups. Each group will get partial funding for its activities for a three-year period of time.

The institute also supports doctoral research in business and economic sciences, through Martti Ahtisaari International Doctoral Scholarship Programme, for which several researchers are selected annually.

Research and development projects

The institute carries out research and development activities in several domestic and international joint projects funded by EU, Tekes and other sources.The projects have involved various business network, business model and market evolution in such domains as healthcare and well-being, industrial production  and different high-technology sectors, but also for example the arctic region, built environments, smart spaces and facilities, and food production.

The two biggest strategic development projects carried out by the institute have been establishing and further development of Business Kitchen, a collaboration platform and incubator for new businesses, and the AACSB accreditation of Oulu Business School with its related international collaboration. The development work for both is still ongoing and the institute has an active role it it.


The institute publishes its research results actively in scientific journals and proceedings, but also as papers presented in conferences, as professional reports and in public media. A list of the publications can be found here.