Young People as Future Makers in Eastern Finland

Duration: 2023–2024
Authors: Eija Eronen, Tuija Väyrynen, Jenni Simonen ja Ville Pitkänen
Funding: E2 Research, MTK Foundation, the Regional Council of Kainuu and Employee Foundation

How do young people think the future of eastern Finland looks? What role do young people play at work and in building their region’s welfare? This new research project, which follows the Young People’s Good Life study, studies young people living near Finland’s eastern border. At a time of extended crises and challenges to well-being, it is particularly important to study young people’s capabilities and faith in the future, as well as how young people themselves describe their goals and the components of a good life.

The Young People as Future Makers in Eastern Finland research project asks

  • What young adults (aged 18 to 29) living in the border region of eastern Finland think about a good life and what do they value? How do they see their future?
  • How do they describe their personal capabilities?
  • What do they consider their hometowns’ pull and hold factors?
  • How committed do young adults become in the world of work, the traditional professions in their hometowns, and in implementing the green transition?
  • What do young adults think about the impacts of war initiated by Russia on their lives and the areas they live in?

The findings of the project provide information on young adults’ lives for decision makers, employers, firms and educators in eastern Finland, as well as for the public conversation. This information will help eastern Finland develop and become more vibrant.

The research combines a qualitative and quantitative approach with multidisciplinary thinking. The qualitative data consists of group interviews conducted with young adults aged under 30 in the Kainuu region. The group interviews provided deep understanding of young adults’ views. In addition, young adults in Kainuu, North Karelia and South Karelia were surveyed to obtain generalizable data about eastern Finnish young adults’ thinking.

E2 Research, the MTK foundation, the Regional Council of Kainuu and the Employees’ Foundation funded the research.

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