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Ability to read nature promotes green business

In its quest for sustainable well-being, Sitra is exploring the benefits the natural environment can have on our mental and physical well-being...


Tuula Sjöstedt

Specialist, Communications and Public Affairs


Sitra is providing new solutions for sustainable well-being. Natural resources and the effects of nature on our well-being are sources of new inspiration for the service business and international pioneers. Commercialising nature’s intangible values requires the ability to read nature, and to understand and combine nature, services and technology into a multisensory service experience. Learning to read nature will help create new business, based on green well-being.

Finland’s population is ageing and illnesses caused by our affluence, immobility and age are on the increase. From the national economy’s perspective, new services and models for reducing healthcare costs are needed. The focus on preventing illness is growing in the healthcare sector.

According to research, nature promotes people’s health and well-being in a number of ways; nature and green environments offer new solutions to the problems our society faces. In the future, they could come to play an even more important role as a source of well-being. The green economy calls for new, multisensory service solutions that promote nature-based business opportunities.

”By expanding our ability to read and understand nature, we can create new services that combine nature, multisensory service experiences and technology,” says Leading Specialist Lea Konttinen of Sitra.

Green environments increase well-being

Green well-being calls for a rethink of many issues. It also requires a new way of building our relationship with nature, to make it part of our everyday practices and business activities. If we can learn to read nature, we will be able to understand its processes and its effects on our well-being, and to integrate those into various service entities. This will enable the long-term maintenance and promotion of health and well-being.

”Greater ability to read nature will provide us with the basis for benefiting more extensively from the green environment, as part of both existing and new services, and everyday living environments,” Konttinen says.

New nature-based service concepts related to living and working environments, recreation, upbringing, education, treatment and care will also provide Finnish companies with opportunities to become pioneers in international markets.

Back in 2009, in Finland’s natural resource strategy (Intelligently powered by nature, coordinated by Sitra), the use of natural resources was highlighted as a key national issue for the future. Sitra has continued to expand on this theme, in order to increase people’s awareness of the proven benefits of natural environments on mental and physical well-being. Alongside its partners, Sitra has also supported the emergence of new product and service entities and innovative companies, based on the well-being effects of nature.

Published by Sitra on June 13, the publication Luonnonlukutaito – Luo liiketoimintaa vihreästä hyvinvoinnista (“Ability to read nature – creating business from green well-being”; only available in Finnish) is a compilation of the relevant key results of workshops, seminars and reports from recent years.

Information on the publication

Luonnonlukutaito – Luo liiketoimintaa vihreästä hyvinvoinnista
Susanna Särkkä, Lea Konttinen and Tuula Sjöstedt (eds.)
Helsinki: Sitra, 2013
60 p.
ISBN 978-951-563-861-8 (PDF)

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