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Southwest Finland to become an international education and development centre for virtual production

The number of virtual productions is growing rapidly, but a shortage of talent is holding back business growth in Finland. Virtual productions bring new opportunities to all the top industry sectors in the region, such as the marine and pharmaceutical industries, in the fields of design, simulation, product development and training.

Virtual technology is rapidly becoming a cross-sectoral, international competitive factor. The joint project between Turku Science Park Ltd and Turku University of Applied Sciences plans to forecast and secure virtual innovation in the leading industrial and educational sectors of Southwest Finland. The aim is to increase regional augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and extended Reality (XR) knowledge capital in the region’s universities and companies.

“Virtual solutions can be seen as a competitive advantage in the future in different industries, similar to the way sustainability is today. In film and TV productions, for example, it is already one of the fastest growing areas,” says Teija Raninen, Commissioner for Film at the Western Finland Film Commission.

Co-operative education and development, supported by international expertise, will set the stage for Southwest Finland’s virtual future. The cooperation includes stakeholders from the United States, Latvia, the Netherlands and Sweden, among others.

The long-term goal is to create an internationally collaborative education and development centre for virtual productions in Southwest Finland.

Virtual technologies and productions are expected to become a business worth billions of euros in the coming years. Facebook, Google, Sony, Microsoft and others are leading the way in global development and have invested heavily in the field.

The Southwest Finland Virtual Production Education and Development Centre project is funded by the Regional Council of Southwest Finland through the Supporting Regions for Sustainable Growth and Vitality (AKKE) budget.