The number of companies established in higher education institutions (HEIs) increased in 2015. The number of companies that fall into this category, however, is quite small, so quantitatively small changes appear as major percentage changes. However, growth in the number of companies established is a bright spot. Another positive observation is that the entrepreneurship among recent higher education graduates has remained on a par with the previous year. In the context of this review, HEIs refer to the University of Tampere, Tampere University of Technology (TUT), Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK) and, where students and recent graduates are concerned, Tampere Region-based operations of the Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK).
Promoting entrepreneurship and cultivating entrepreneurial abilities comprise one of the development visions of the Tampere3 process. One tool for promoting this is the joint Y-kampus, which serves all three campuses. Y-kampus provides an open space for entrepreneurship and networking. Y-kampus serves all three campuses as a meeting place for future entrepreneurs, research results and working life talents. Read more about the Y-kampus.
HEIs have played a major role in attracting human capital to the Tampere Region. As a background material for the universities' contract negotiations in the spring 2016, a statistical material was drafted by the Ministry of Education and Culture to support the structural development of universities. This material demonstrates that Tampere Region HEIs have managed to attract foreign degree students in accordance with their goals. The number of foreign higher education degree students and research staff has increased steadily during the 2010s. However, growth in the number of foreign research staff came to a halt in 2015. Conversely, the number of foreign degree students increased further in the most recent reference year, 2013.
When examining indicators describing HEI funding, a clear decrease in funding can be seen. This applies to both domestic and foreign as well as private and public funding. There was a dramatic drop in the amount of Tekes funding granted to HEIs, but there were also major contractions in EU and other, equivalent international funding as well as in private funding from foreign and domestic sources.
The transition between funding periods in EU funding instruments and framework programmes can partly explain this drop. The decrease in funding for single research facilities has a significant impact on the decrease in the indicator of private funding. Decreases in Tekes funding can be partly explained by changes in funding policy.
In all, the amount of external research funding granted to universities dropped only slightly year-on-year (-1.6%). External funding includes funding received from the Academy of Finland, Tekes, companies, private funds and foundations, municipalities and ministries as well as other public and EU funding. The amount of funding received from different sources varies from year to year: for example, whereas Tekes funding for HEIs went down in 2015, funding from the Academy of Finland went up.
In recent years, HEIs have managed to increase the number of favourable Academy of Finland funding decisions, both in terms of quantity and monetary amount. The number of favourable funding decisions fell at the beginning of the 2010s, until the number began to rise again in 2014. In 2015, the number of funding decisions rose 20 per cent, with a 31.3 per cent increase in euros.
In the Tampere Region, progress is being made in the Tampere3 process - the new higher education community will be launched at the beginning of 2018. Tampere3 combines high-quality basic research for interdisciplinary and applied research. The goal is to create a multidisciplinary, globally interesting research and learning environment, where people work in networks and through agile experiments. Different dimensions of research, development and innovation, from research to application and commercialisation, are combined in one higher education community. Read more about the Tampere3-process