Photo by: Heidi Karhu

Co-creation model between schools and companies gained success in innovation competition

 KYKY activities, the creative co-creation between schools and companies developed by the City of Espoo Education and Cultural Services, has finished in second place in the Mayor’s innovation competition. In KYKY activities, pupils from Espoo early education to upper secondary school work together with various companies and communities to create new products and services that promote learning, growth and wellbeing.

The key idea of KYKY activities is to open doors and invite various interest groups such as companies, associations, research institutes and municipal residents to refine ideas together with school communities. With the help of shared working practices and agreement templates, safe, systematic and efficient co-creation can be achieved.

KYKY activities support both schools in the implementation of the new curriculum and the business operations of companies operating in the field of learning technology.

Partner companies have started to monitor the activities of schools and to develope ideas responding to the challenges in the development of learning and supportive services. Companies receive feedback on their development ideas at an early stage of the product development process and also gain references to support the marketing of services and products.

Schools have the need for new technological solutions to support growth and learning.  KYKY activities allow for the  development needs of pupils and teachers to be heard and responded to. Co-operation strengthens entrepreneurship competence and encourages creativity and innovation. It also enables cross-disciplinary learning from others.

In addition, KYKY activities promote education export: the pedagogic impact of the products of partner companies grows. A reference from the City of Espoo is a global merit. According to the competition jury, such a systematic and effective form of co-creation has never before been implemented in Finland or abroad.

According to the mother of the KYKY-innovation, development director Kristiina Erkkilä, there was a real need for the model. Earlier many obstacles were seen which ruled out the possibility of co-operation. That´s why the model has aroused  intrest in Finland and even internationally. 

The director of the Finnish education Kaisu Toivonen is glad about the prize. -"The Finnish education has actively participated in developing the model and the schools have participated in developing the innovations with companies. I want to thank everybody for the great co-operation!"

There are already 70 partners participating in the activities and the interest is extensive. KYKY activities were first developed as an EU funded Six City Strategy (6Aika) project. Now the model of co-creation is also being extended to other city services under the slogan “Make with Espoo” which is calling both companies and city residents to join the co-operation.

Read more about the Mayor´s innovation competition: