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Photonics Finland have been awarded with the Bronze Label recognition of the European Commission Cluster Excellence Initiative 

Certificate for Cluster Management Excellence Label BRONZE 

This year 2024 the Finnish photonics developer Photonics Finland is celebrating its 10th anniversary, which has begun in a remarkable way with the Bronze Label recognition awarded by the European Commission’s cluster excellence program (European Cluster Excellence Initiative – ECEI). Clusters are national and international networks where a concentrated group of companies, experts and institutions operate in the same or related industry. In Europe, clusters are an important and valued part of regional and national development and innovation activities.

The purpose of the European Cluster Excellence Initiative (ECEI), which was started in 2009, is to promote the development of the clusters, improving their competitiveness and innovation capacity, as well as efficiency. It aims to provide support and guidance for cluster development and management, but also recognition according to the best practices. ECEI has three different labels; Bronze, Silver, and Gold, which are awarded to clusters based on their achievements in the field of cluster development. In the cluster operation different areas are emphasized from networking to financial and resource management, cooperation, innovations, as well as training and know-how.

These recognitions allow clusters to publicly demonstrate their commitment to quality and best practices, also attract stakeholders such as companies, investors, and public actors. Currently there are only four approved Bronze label operators in Finland. One of the main reasons for the low number is the two-year validity period of the label’s recognition, during which the cluster is expected to develop towards the next step. Most operators are unable to do so, for example currently in Finland there are no Silver label operators, and only one with the Gold label.

In other parts of the Europe, clusters are seen as the key drivers for the innovation development. In Finland, the development of the clusters is slow due to the lack of a national cluster financing instrument, also a large part of the cluster development work is done by volunteers in addition to their other work. The core activities of the Finnish clusters are financed e.g. from several EU projects that creates new networks and services that also benefit cluster members, but at the same time tends to decentralize and slow down the core development and innovation activities of the cluster.

“The Bronze Label recognition is a proof of the long-term successful work of the Finnish photonics community over the past ten years. On a pan-European scale, our community is exceptionally united, which has given Photonics Finland the leverage to become a pioneer in cluster operations development. The expertise and commitment of our member community, and the financial support from the EU projects are the main pillars that enables our current operations. The received recognition gives us a clear direction and goals for the future. However, in order to achieve these goals, we must first map out the possible regional and national cluster financing instruments, says Juha Purmonen, Executive Director of Photonics Finland.”

For more information, contact:

Photonics Finland Executive Director
Juha Purmonen
+358 50 354 3832

What is photonics

Photonics is the science and technology of light, which possibilities are limitless. Thanks to photonics, we use LED lights instead of light bulbs, or OLED tv’s instead of tube televisions, robotics, and sensors instead of humans. Photonics gives us fast optical internet connections, better smartphones, tablets, and computers. Because of it everything is lighter, screens are thinner, cameras are better, and virtual reality solutions are already approaching our everyday lives. It also enables us to collect the sun’s energy with the help of solar panels, provides better and more accurate healthcare, saves the earth resources in agriculture, and helps even cars to drive themselves. Up to 50% of the value of a mobile phone is photonics, the components based on which are e.g. camera and screen.

Despite all this, only a fraction of the potential offered by photonics is at our disposal. Photonics plays a significant role in providing important solutions for world-shaking challenges, such as climate change and sustainable development, but also in renewing industry, food production, movement, communication, healthcare, or energy production.

Photonics Finland

An industry-led innovation ecosystem with over 250 individual members and more than 120 company and organizational members. Photonics Finland brings together Finnish photonics education, research, product development, industry, end users and services. Photonics Finland represents companies and operators in the Finnish photonics industry, promoting the industry’s development and visibility both nationally and internationally. Photonics Finland works in close cooperation PREIN – the flagship of photonics focusing on innovations and research. More information:


PREIN is the flagship of photonics research, a network where key players in Finnish photonics research develop next-generation light-based technologies. Applications of the PREIN flagship’s research include sensors for health monitoring, automotive industry LIDAR technology and environmental monitoring, as well as efficient solar power solutions. PREIN promotes Finnish know-how through pioneering research, expanding business opportunities, developing training programs and increasing awareness of the critical role of light-based technology in our society. More information: