Future common Nordic challenges to the health and welfare sector call for innovative solutions. The Innovative Nordic Welfare Solutions lighthouse project aims at making the Nordic region world leading within innovative health and welfare solutions with export potential.
The challenge of an aging population, more lifestyle diseases and chronic patients, and the ever-increasing expectations of the population as to what the health system should treat and solve, has placed health and welfare on the innovation policy agenda in every Nordic country. All the Nordic countries see opportunities for innovation and market shares in the global economy in this field.
While the public healthcare sector is not mainly responsible for being a driver of innovation, it is necessary for the public health sector to become more innovative and to adapt new solutions to solve future challenges.
However, there are system weaknesses regarding innovation in the healthcare sector. In the field of needs-driven innovation, market failures related to lack of information and knowledge, primarily due to a lack of interaction between the users and producers are quite apparent. In a world where user-centric solutions are more and more demanded and ability to integrate with existing advanced technology and processes is a prerequisite for success, companies with a smart way of interacting with professional buyers and users in their development stages, have a competitive advantage. Effective tools for innovation in the interaction between supply and demand are therefore highly desirable and demanded.
The lighthouse project ran from 2014 to 1027 and was Nordic Innovation's response to the challenges outlined above. The project originated in the Nordic Co-Operation Programme for Business and Innovation 2014-2017 and built upon the previous lighthouse project Innovation in the Health Sector through Public Procurement and Regulation.
The export part of this lighthouse project was continued as the Nordic prime ministers' initiative project Nordic Welfare Solutions.