Sustainability under scrutiny

Blog post
Jussi Manninen

VTT's first sustainability programme has just been published. At VTT, responsibility is created through impact – our research produces sustainable solutions for society as a whole. Our own activities must also bear more detailed scrutiny than before

Sustainability is on the agenda of all companies. They all repeat the same familiar elements in their speeches, including personnel wellbeing, responsible supply chains and a smaller carbon footprint. This also applies to VTT. Our own special characteristic is impact: all the good that our work produces for society as a whole.

Impeccable ethical principles are the foundation of our corporate responsibility programme. We are reliable, impartial and honest. If these foundations crumble, our work will lose its credible basis. On this sustainable foundation lie the other pillars of our sustainability: thriving professionals, empowered customers and a resilient society. 

Our work in each of these areas is guided by the sustainability programme, which builds a coherent package of responsibility issues and divides them to be implemented across the entire organisation. This is not only a mere empty declaration, but we have defined clear development steps and target states by 2025 for every business area.

Research aims for good

VTT helps its customers and society to innovate. Our research increases understanding and vision and provides society with information on how to promote low-emission solutions or recycling technologies, for example. Sustainable development solutions generate a lot of good around us and influence the direction of development. The impacts are not limited to individual companies but spread widely in networks.

We examine our entire research portfolio in terms of how our work contributes towards achieving the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In our sustainability programme, we have prioritised five of the SDGs that we can influence most. We assess impacts when selecting research topics and measure them as research progresses. In each project, we aim to maximise the good. 

Hope encourages us to take action

Hope is the starting point for the research work done by VTT. We believe it is possible for the humanity to solve its greatest problems. To achieve this, we must find a balance between economic activity and ecological and social sustainability. Our task is to help society find this balance. 

Hope is also of great importance for our professionals and customers. We want to offer our professionals a meaningful place to work at. This is achieved when we do good and create hope for the future. What could be more important work than that? 

For our customers, we create hope by building new business with sustainable impacts on the future. By declaring the message of hope, we can encourage people to make good choices. At the same time, we are creating markets for operators who want to build a radically better world.

Vigilance needed when doing corporate responsibility work

VTT's focus has always been on what we can achieve through our research work. Sustainable foundation, principles and values have been the guiding light of our work for 80 years. We have already incorporated various elements of responsibility into our operations but have only began making these issues more clearly visible over recent years. For example, VTT has long been a workplace where everyone can be themselves. Now, the diversity of our people and the inclusiveness of the work community are clearly voiced. We are communicating more clearly about the corporate responsibility of the work we do.

In sustainability matters, the goal is always getting further way as it is being approached. The external world, partners and VTTers examine sustainability more closely than ever before. At VTT, we conduct responsible research and solve major problems. Still, we cannot lull ourselves into thinking that this is enough – we must also ensure that our own actions comply with our principles of sustainability in all respects. We must remain vigilant every single day. 

Jussi Manninen
Executive Vice President, Carbon neutral solutions
Twitter: @jjmanninen

Jussi Manninen
Jussi Manninen
Executive Vice President
Our vision beyond 2030

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