Robots are coming – SAMK debate at Finnish summer’s top forum

Automation steals jobs. Nevertheless, new jobs and professions arise unpredictably. If education trains you to think it doesn’t grow old. At the Robots steal jobs debate, organized by SAMK, stood out the importance of learning ability.

17.7.2017 | By: Anne Sankari, translation Petra O'Rourke | Photo: Anne Sankari

2017 SAMk SuomiAreenaRobotit Vievät Tyot

Ari Juntunen, CTO, from Elinar Oy Ltd., Tapio Bergholm, senior researcher, from SAK, Kari Ollila, business angel from FiBAN and Left Alliance MP Jari Myllykoski took part in the SAMK’s debate: Robots steal jobs – where are you when Finland turns 111 years old? Project manager Marko Mikkola from SAMK was the moderator.

The debate went through familiar basics: the robots of the industrial production have taken over the dangerous, difficult and dirty work – and people have more room to do things we do better.

According to some visions, automation also returns jobs closer – even buying a shirt changes completely. When a consumer wants a new shirt, the measurements are analyzed by automatism and tomorrow your custom-made shirt arrives at your doorstep.

–  It will arrive from somewhere real close, sees Ari Juntunen, CTO, from Elinar Oy Ltd.

Learning ability on a pedestal

Many contents and mechanical ability grows old, but learning ability remains.

– Companies should invest into training at all employee levels. Everybody should have learning ability, emphasizes Tapio Bergholm, senior researcher, from SAK, The Central Organization of Finnish Trade Unions.

Occupations die and arise, clientele expands for some.

– Where did personal trainers come from for example? New services are invented all the time, says Bergholm.

Bergholm is confident that the new service concepts – whatever they will be – have many opportunities. They consist of self-employment, entrepreneurs and them networking together, making the barrier of employment and entrepreneurship disappear.


Automation and industry 4.0 is one of SAMK’s three focus areas. SAMK developes competences related to an automation cluster. The focus areas are characterized by activities demonstrating national pioneering, significant amount of external funding and a collaboration network of nearly 100 companies and communities. The focus areas invest in increasing Master-level education, international research collaboration and export of education.

SuomiAreena is a public debate forum held in July in Pori. This year’s theme is Finland's centenary as an independent country. This year 60 000 visitors are expected to take part in over 150 events. The topics of the discussions are related for example with politics, society, culture and sports. Along with Finnish activists, politicians and other influential people SuomiAreena has a large number of international participants.

17.7.2017 | By: Anne Sankari, translation Petra O'Rourke | Photo: Anne Sankari

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