The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies to promote Finnish science and research in the European Operas organisation

News   10.10.2023 12.43

The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies is the first Finnish organisation to join the European OPERAS research infrastructure for social sciences and humanities. 

Operas is a well-known publishing and research infrastructure with the duty of promoting open scholarly communication and publishing and coordinating the field’s development especially on the European level. Operas has more than 50 members, mainly from Europe but also from Canada and Brazil, among other countries. The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies is a core member, entitling it to participate in the organisation’s development and highest decision-making. The membership helps promote Finnish science and research expertise.

Operators in the field of social sciences and humanities are often small and under-resourced and tend to work separately, so Operas acts as the missing link and brings the experts of the field together and develops services for them.

The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies promotes Finnish science through active participation in the field’s international networks.

“Through international cooperation, we are able to influence and improve Finnish scholarly activities and showcase Finnish expertise to the rest of the world. Our goal is that the opportunities provided by Operas will also benefit Finnish science and research as much as possible. This could be best achieved by inviting Operas to join the roadmaps of research in Finland,” says the Executive Director of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies, Lea Ryynänen-Karjalainen. 

The member societies of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies will also benefit from the Operas membership. In the future, the federation can propose experts to be nominated to the Special Interest Groups – or SIGs – of Operas and suggest new themes for these groups. At the moment, the themes include topics such as influencing, business models of open science, the FAIR principles supporting high quality of research, and multilingualism, which is also an important theme to the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies. As the cooperation continues, the Federation will inform its stakeholders of the different opportunities becoming available.

“The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies has a long-standing tradition in supporting societies in their endeavor to disseminate knowledge. Today, they are naturally positioned to spearhead the development of Diamond Open Access in Finland, with the platform already hosting 130 journals. We appreciate the strong support the Federation brings to the preservation of cultural,  linguistic diversity and multilingualism in scholarly communication. We have been working together for several years on this topic. We are delighted and grateful to the Federation to have accepted our proposition to join OPERAS as a Core member, therefore representing Finland in our Executive Assembly”, says Pierre Mounier, OPERAS Coordinator (Community).

Operas has been the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies’ close partner even before the membership. At the moment, this partnership is becoming more concrete in the EU-funded Craft OA, DIAMAS and GraspOS projects.

Growing international work – more effective Finnish research

In recent years, the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies has increasingly grown its expertise through international cooperation. In addition to the long-lasting international research literature exchange operations, the Federation is now involved in e.g. EU Horizon projects, most recently through its Operas membership and its participation in the international CoARA coalition advancing researcher assessment. The Federation is part of six CoARA workgroups, and is coordinating the one related to multilingualism.

The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies has been able to employ new personnel, thanks to the growing project funding. The ongoing projects focus on matters such as developing the operating conditions for Open Access publishing, as well as research and researcher evaluation in Europe. Additionally, the importance of multilingualism in science and research is promoted, and practical instructions and tools are designed for these purposes. The best known cooperation project is the Helsinki Initiative on Multilingualism in Scholarly Communication which has now been signed by more than 1,000 different operators around the world.

According to Lea Ryynänen-Karjalainen, international cooperation and advocacy work can promote the conditions of especially non-profit scholarly publishing in Finnish or Swedish in Finland and overall increase publishing operations in other languages.

“Another objective is to increase the respect for the volunteer expert and advocacy work in scholarly publishing and learned societies as part of responsible research and researcher evaluation, as these benefit the entire research community. We have a great basis for this, as the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies has become an increasingly well-known and trusted partner also internationally,” says Lea Ryynänen-Karjalainen.

Read more about the international cooperation of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies:

Project pages

Exchange Centre for Scientific Literature

Helsinki Initiative (25 September 2019)

Operas logo.