Action 1 of the Kainuu action plan, deals with Lignin as emerging market in Kainuu. Dedicated funding was 160 000€.

Action 1 transfers one of the essential functions of the BioSC centre of competence good practice: the methodology for develping new industries through the implementation of multi-sided, mutually reinforcing initiatives involving inputs from all three aspects of the triple helix (policy, research, business). In Kainuu the methodology is applied to the development of lignin processing towards new applications identified through the feasibility study on lignin. 

Following a call for projects issued by the BRIDGES partner PP2, the Regional Council of Kainuu, Action 1 was implemented as a research project, coordinated by the University of Oulu and in  collaboration with VTT (the Technical Research centre of Finland), the water solubility of lignin, required for scaled up applications, was researched. The research focus was identified by an in depth entrepreneurial discovery process (EDP) that took place during  winter and spring 2019.

One and half years later, the research results confirm the water solubility and the methods needed. The next steps include national and interregional collaborations actions to bring the research result close to the market.

Action 1 results are linked to the BRIDGES project additional activities for mapping and analysing the lignin value chain and further, to the BERRY+ S3 partnership for identifying interregional complementarities.

Action 1 has not been an easy task, however, it has been possible to reach the anticipated results. The Action 1 implementation (Dr. Jarkko Räty, University of Oulu) and the enabling Intermediate Body responsible (Dr. Jouni Ponnikas, Regional Development Director, Regional Council of Kainuu) express their happiness at the positive results and confirm the importance of having follow up solutions available.

We are welcoming expressions of interest from regions and organisations who would be interested to know more about this issue.