University of Turku Strengthens Industrial Engineering Competence with Renowned Experts


The industrial engineering programme is built in the interface of the Faculty of Technology and Turku School of Economics. DSc (Tech.) Saku Mäkinen has started as Professor of Industrial Engineering at the Faculty of Technology and DSc (Tech.) Jorma Turunen will be appointed as Professor of Practice in spring 2022.

The industrial engineering area of expertise is a research and education programme currently being created in the interface of the Faculty of Technology and Turku School of Economics. The programme encompasses the themes of utilising technology based on sustainable development and developing growth business prospects with emphasis on sustainable development solutions.

The University of Turku has been endowed two professorships in industrial engineering and a professorship in circular economy. Both areas of expertise have a strong foundation between the education and research areas of technology and economics.

Saku Mäkinen has worked as Professor of Technology Management at the Tampere University of Technology in 2003–2018 and at the reformed Tampere University in 2019–2022. Mäkinen’s research settles in the intersection of technology and innovation management (TIM) and strategic management. According to Mäkinen, sustainable development has grown into an important research theme in almost every discipline, but is often not integrated well enough in teaching.

– At the University of Turku, the goals and methods of sustainable development are integrated as a central element in teaching. Latest studies and reports show that sustainable development is an increasingly important competitive factor for businesses. I see this trend only becoming stronger in the future. Moreover, it is necessary for the preservation of this joint venture of ours, called the Earth, that different societal actors engage in multidisciplinary collaboration.

In his role as Professor of Practice, Jorma Turunen’s expertise supports the development of societal influencing at the Faculty of Technology and the University as a whole as well as their ability to seize the challenges and opportunities brought by sustainable business. Turunen has e.g. worked as the CEO of Technology Industries of Finland in 2010–2018, and he has extensive expertise from company boards. Turunen has comprehensive knowledge on the needs of the private sector as well as understanding on combining companies’ growth and sustainability strategies.

– I am excited to be able to participate in launching this new industrial engineering area of expertise. I’m particularly looking forward to the opportunity to concentrate on promoting the societal interaction, research, and education of sustainable business, says Turunen.

The industrial engineering programme strengthens the University’s role as a partner in business life, and at the same time, improves the prerequisites for sustainable growth business in the region of Southwest Finland. Closely related, the vacancy of a professor of circular economy is currently open.

– Industrial engineering is an important area of expertise in the field of technology, and it also supports economics. It is excellent that we will receive two renowned and respected experts as members of our University community. Their expertise will be a fine addition to supplement the multidisciplinary expertise in sustainable development and responsibility at the University of Turku, says Vice Rector Mika Hannula from the University of Turku.

Created 23.02.2022 | Updated 23.02.2022