Laurea involved in creating new innovations for health and well-being

The info session for the Co-created Health and Wellbeing project focused on future health and well-being services and pilot studies in Helsinki and Vantaa.

The goal of the Co-created Health and Wellbeing project, CoHeWe for short, is to promote co-operation between companies and cities and to take part in developing new customer-centric health, social and well-being services.

Laurea’s role in the project is that of an assessor. Other project partners include the City of Vantaa, Forum Virium Helsinki, The City of Tampere, The City of Oulu, the University of Oulu and the Pirkanmaa Hospital District joint municipal authority.

Held in the new shopping centre Redi, the info session targeted businesses in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. Participants received information about healthcare and social welfare needs in Helsinki and Vantaa, future pilot studies in the region and general news about the healthcare and social welfare sector.

Laurea was represented at the event by Sami Kauppinen, Project Manager, and Director Tuija Hirvikoski, who spoke about the benefits of co-creation and pilot studies from the perspective of companies.

More impactful development work

Co-creation is based on an interactive relationship between the professional and customer. It is considered to be an effective approach, especially for reforming services and operating methods. In her presentation, Hirvikoski emphasised the importance of research-based co-creation, appropriate coordination and facilitation.

“Companies, municipalities, research institutions and, most importantly, end users must be involved with greater ease in the co-creation process. We must also devise ways to create a bond between the supplier and beneficiary in the course of the process.”

Co-creation is a familiar topic to Hirvikoski. During Finland’s previous EU Presidency in 2006, co-creation was boosted through the establishment of the Network of Living Labs, which Hirvikoski led for three years.

“I promoted the network in international circles. I must admit, though, that I am feeling slightly annoyed now. It seems that other Europeans are making very effective business use of what we Finns brought to the table, so to say.”

Hirvikoski believes it is time for renewed efforts and hopes that the CoHeWe project will give rise to new methods for international, cross-border business. She calls for courage to think big, on the one hand, and boldness to take risks and possibly fail, on the other hand.

“Have we done enough of the right things or talked too much of structures? Failure is beautiful. The main thing is to fail quickly and learn from it. This leads to cost-effectiveness.”

The project seeks to find new health and well-being innovations through quick experiments. Hirvikoski points out that speed and cost-effectiveness are particularly important to companies.

Read more about the project.