8.7 Fostering the creative use of new technologies
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As mentioned in Education Finland by National Agency for Education, Finland 'enjoys one of the most advanced and expansive applications of digital technology in education, starting from the first grade of primary school throughout the education system, and consisting of formal as well as extracurricular learning through technology.' Advancing and promoting digitalisation is also an important aspect in the current Government Programme (2019-2023).
Business Finland is a Finnish government organisation supporting innovation funding and trade, travel and investment promotion. As known previously as Tekes, it has supported the development of educational technology in Finnish schools, related to that see for example “Finnish Innovations and Technologies in Schools - A Guide towards New Ecosystems of Learning” (Niemi, Multisilta, Lipponen & Vivitsou eds. 2014).
Verke is the national centre of expertise for digital youth work in Finland nominated by the Ministry of Culture and Education. Verke’s vision is to provide everyone who works with young people with the opportunity to use digital media and technology as part of their work. Verke aims to promote welfare, inclusion and equality among young people by means of digital youth work. Verke trains approximately 2500 youth workers annually and provides materials about different aspects of digital youth work. Creative use of technology is a big part of digital youth work. Verke’s operations are managed by City of Helsinki Culture and Leisure Division.
As described in ‘Compendium/Finland 2.4 Digital policy and developments: 'Since the late 1990s, the Finnish government has emphasised the central role of the new ICT in economic and social development. In the early 2000s, new information policy programmes were outlined and strategic plans written by governments and ministries, but most of them were concerned either with instruments (the techniques of distribution and reception) or content (knowledge, educative material). This division corresponded by and large with the division of jurisdictions between the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Economy and the Ministry of Education and Culture.' As a more recent development the Compendium mentions for example the wiki-inventory for intangible heritage.
There are also examples of activities which encourage young people to take active roles in observing, exploring and analysing their immediate surroundings, such as the Heritage Makers competition for children and young people, which originally was part of the Finnish programme of European Heritage Days, but since 2018 has extended to the rest of Europe.