HAMK and Laurea have entered into a strategic partnership aimed at developing Finland’s growth corridor via means of education, research, and innovation and development activities. The plans also include international cooperation.
The agreement includes developing professional doctor's degrees as part of the activities of universities of applied sciences, together with international partner universities. Professional doctoral education will focus on the profiles of the universities of applied sciences.
“The idea of building professional doctorate in Finnish universities of applied sciences has been on the table for a long time. It seems to be a difficult issue when it comes to higher education politics, even though the skills resulting from it are surely needed in the workforce. Also, those who have completed a master’s degree at a university of applied sciences need a path to professional post-graduate studies. That is why we, together with Häme University of Applied Sciences, decided to carry this out with international partner universities,” says Laurea President Jouni Koski.
HAMK and Laurea will begin to produce joint research and development activities especially in the fields of smart services, security, and sustainable development. The first step is to build a strategic research programme, and to apply for international and national funding to implement it. In order to increase the vitality of the growth corridor, innovation activities will be developed together with the residents and businesses of the area.
“As joint fields of research and development, we chose entities that are important from the growth corridor’s point of view, and that at the same time fit the profiles of both Laurea and HAMK,” describes HAMK Rector Pertti Puusaari.
As far as the agreement is concerned, the universities of applied sciences commit themselves to competence management and leadership as well as to joint development. Thus, the competence of HAMK’s Professional Teacher Education Unit and Research Unit for Professional Excellence will be utilised.
“The partnership between Laurea and HAMK has lasted already for over a decade, and enabled cooperation that is both significant and effective. This is a strong foundation for new areas of cooperation to strengthen Finland’s growth corridor,” says Koski.
“Together with Laurea, we want to build a higher education institution partnership for Finland's growth corridor; a partnership that is even more effective, more agile, and more significant to the society. There is good space in the growth corridor for a few universities of applied sciences,” Puusaari continues.