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Smart city mayor: Digitalisation contributes to equality

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When Nokia lost the smartphone race against Apple, its key R&D centre in Oulu, a high-tech city of 250,000 in northern Finland, weathered mass layoffs. Nokia has since rebounded and returned jobs to the area. Mayor Päivi Laajala told EURACTIV Slovakia about its recovery.

Päivi Laajala has served as the mayor of Oulu since April 2017. He previously served as deputy mayor.

Laajala was interviewed by EURACTIV.sk’s Senior Editor, Pavol Szalai.

What is a smart city?

In a smart city, citizens have services which make living more easy, predictable and safe. A smart city is a place where economic life creates new jobs based on innovation.

Oulu focuses a lot on fast wireless internet. How can inhabitants use these networks?

The development of broadband and other digital systems and connections are seen as the answer to keep municipal services available to everyone. Citizens should have equal access to e-services and to participate in decision-making.

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