Sauli Eloranta, the winner of the CTO of the Year award 2019, appointed professor of practice at VTT

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Sauli Eloranta, M. Sc. (Tech.), began working as Professor of Practice at VTT on 1 January 2020. Eloranta, elected the CTO of the Year 2019, comes to VTT with a long experience of promoting technology and digitisation in industry and maritime transport.

Before VTT, Eloranta acted as Head of Innovation and Technology at Kongsberg Maritime. Eloranta earned the CTO of the Year title granted by the Federation of Finnish Technology Industries for his merits as an active influencer in the Finnish innovation scene and promotor of autonomous marine traffic. In addition, he has been involved in supporting the collaboration of the private sector and societal actors.

"Industry and other stakeholders needs co-operation in the field of technology R&D. The co-operation model of ecosystems can even beat major global players. The ecosystems need a unique and bold vision, which is not yet very common in today's business world. A good example of this is the One Sea ecosystem in Finland with an aim to develop autonomous maritime transport," says Eloranta, who used to serve as chairman of the One Sea ecosystem.

Sauli Eloranta is also affecting the renewal of the transport sector in his role as a member of the steering group of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment's National Growth Programme for the Transport Sector. The transport system reform requires affecting legislation and, for example, compatibility of data independent of device suppliers.

In his role as Professor of Practice, Eloranta will focus on the overall resilience of the Finnish society.

"As a state-owned company, VTT has a key role in ensuring safety, security and functionality of the increasingly digitised society. With him, Sauli Eloranta brings his robust knowledge of the development of maritime traffic safety and the reform of a traditional industrial sector. VTT functions as research partner to the industry as a whole, which has many security-critical functions," says Erja Turunen, Executive Vice President, Smart Industry and Energy Systems at VTT.

Cyber security concerns the whole society

VTT helps different industries to ensure safety and security through new technologies, innovations and services. With digitization, various systems will network and become connected with each other. Finnish industries are developing, for instance, smart built environment, smart energy systems, smart transport and smart healthcare. Sauli Eloranta has been contributing to the development of cyber security as member of Advisory Board of Business Finland Digitalisation theme. This work has resulted in the establishment of such programmes as Digital Trust Finland.

"Information systems are among the critical functions of society. For example, traffic will become more strongly integrated into information flows. Therefore, in the future, cybersecurity competence will be the foundation of everything, and in this field, nations must aim at skill sovereignity of digital systems. Overall security is a cross-cutting theme in VTT research. VTT's role is to be there to secure the critical functions of society under any circumstances," Eloranta says.

"I believe that by collaboration we can make significant strategic initiatives both nationally and globally, VTT serving as the active initiator thanks to its high technological competence. Our goal is to generate major business benefits for our customers and partners as well as societal benefits both in Finland and throughout Europe," Eloranta underscores.

Picture of Sauli Eloranta
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