Online 30.9.2021 18:00

We are in the middle of a green transition, which brings with it multiple new business opportunities and innovative business models. Existing businesses are urged to change from linear, take – make – waste – models to circular ones and new businesses need to start designing their ideas into reality with the circular economy principles in mind.

The green transition is not only necessary, but there is also pressure by governments, international and local regulations, the public and investors to challenge current ways of designing, making and using products and services.

Finland is one of the leading countries in implementing circular economy practices and has one of the world’s most ambitious goals with plans to be climate neutral by 2035. Some features to demonstrate Finland’s drive in circular economy are that in 2016, Finland was the first country in the world to publish a national roadmap to a circular economy; it has invested significant amounts in innovation and research and, impressively, only one percent of the waste generated in Finland is sent to landfills.

Join us and engage in a meaningful conversation about the business benefits of a circular economy and the opportunities that come with it. The event will be opened by President of Sitra Jyrki Katainen followed by keynote speech from Department of Commerce, Office of Finance and Insurance Industries. Finland’s Ambassador to the United States Mikko Hautala and Michelle Lancaster, Director of Sustainability at Microsoft will gather us by a fireside chat.

Further, we will present three successful Finnish businesses that are already part of the green transition and demonstrate that circular business models can be just as profitable as linear ones and can be implemented broadly. All three companies also took part in an academic study that highlighted the economic side of circularity and the findigs will be discussed by both the company representatives and the professors that analyzed the cases.

After this webinar part, all participants will have an opportunity to network with each other. Finally, the CEO of Business Finland Nina Kopola will conclude the event.

The webinar is an official side event of World Circular Economy Forum, held virtually in Canada this year, and is targeted to all sustainability and circular economy companies, researchers, and policy makers. Participation requires registration by 29.9.2021.


World Circular Economy Forum side event

Thursday 30th of September
from 11 am to 12:30 pm New York (EDT)
from 8:00 am to 9:30 am Los Angeles (PDT)
from 6 pm to 7:30 pm Helsinki (EET)


Opening words
Jyrki Katainen, President of Sitra

Keynote speech: How and why will the Green Transformation disrupt the U.S. Market?

Department of Commerce, ITA/Office of Finance and Insurance Industries (OFII) – Environmental Social Governance (ESG) investment

Finland’s Ambassador to the United States Mikko Hautala and Michelle Lancaster, Director of Sustainability at Microsoft

Stories from Finland: How ecological became economical
Neste Oyj: Petri Lehmus, R&D, Vice President
Kiilto Oy: Raija Polvinen, R&D, Vice President
Touchpoint Group Oy: Noora Salonoja, CEO

Each company case presentation will be commented by professor Leena Aarikka-Stenroos from Tampere University and professor Hanna Lehtimäki from University of Eastern Finland

Virtual networking in smaller groups

Closing remarks
Nina Kopola, CEO of Business Finland



Emmi Nahi
emmi.nahi (at)
+358 50 433 7122




Business Finland is a government-owned organisation, which offers a broad variation of services to support innovation, internationalisation, investments and tourism.

The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra is an accountable and independent future-oriented fund that is influential nationally and internationally and acts as a think tank, promoter of experiments and operating models and a catalyst for co-operation.

The joint project of Finnish Universities, Circular Economy Catalysts: From Innovation to Business Ecosystems (CICAT2025) aims to facilitate the transition from linear to circular economy.

Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Finland: The main task of the Embassy of Finland in Washington D.C. is to enhance the Finnish-U.S. relationship across the board, including political and economic relations as well as contacts and cooperation in culture, science, research, civil society, and citizens.