The societal impact of universities of applied sciences is significantly reflected in the development requirements of their regions’ vocational environments. At Haaga-Helia, societal impact is not a new concept. We drafted our first regional development strategy over ten years ago. At the same time, we also prepared our first assessment of our societal impact. In 2018, we began working with PriceWaterhouseCoopers Oy to describe the societal impact model of Haaga-Helia. It highlighted some of the same matters as a decade earlier: at the heart of our societal impact is close and active cooperation with business community and partners, high employment rates of graduates and our agility as a private higher education institution.
Some of the basis for our societal impact is preparing for the next round of audits of universities of applied sciences. One of its new evaluation areas is a higher education institution promoting impact and renewal, which includes the societal impact of the institution. In 2019, we will continue our impactwork by establishing a shared set of societal impact indicators. We have selected the themes for the next five years, which we are to use to analyse our societal role in more detail according to the themes.
We engaged in diverse practical work throughout the operational year to enhance our impact in the surrounding society. In 2018, we joined the City of Helsinki’s Ilmastokumppanit (“Climate Partners”) and made a climate commitment where we commit to reducing the electricity consumption on our campuses and increasing the environmental awareness of our students and faculty during the coming years. Our electricity consumption in 2018 dropped by 8 per cent over the previous year. We also drafted a PRME report (Principles for Responsible Management Education), which is reported to the UN every two years.
Impacts of high-quality education on individuals and society
- Expertise that meet current and future occupational requirements
- Opening doors to future careers:
- graduate employment
- high-quality employment in fields that correspond with the field of education
- Education’s impact on the standard of living and well-being of graduates
- Personnel expertise and well-being
- Societal actions of students and personnel in society
- The direct utilisation of student skills in the business community and
- the impacts on the operations of companies and organisations
- Development of vocational education pedagogics
- Improved expertise of customers and partners
- New business activities and business
- Expertise created through RDI activities
- Services and products created through RDI activities and the impacts from adopting them
- Impacts of theses and development works
- Improved competitiveness and internationalisation of companies and operators in the public and third sectors
- Personnel’s improved sustainable development expertise and actions to reduce emissions
- Reducing emissions by allowing personnel and students to work remotely
- Promoting sustainable development through RDI activities and education
- Revenue streams generated through Haaga-Helia operations