Innovation capability of Finnish Road Weather and Maintenance Network: challenges and maturity level

Zulkarnain Afriandi, Aki Aapaoja, Raine Hautala, Tuomo K. Kinnunen

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference articleScientific


Innovation today has become everywhere agenda. From small to large companies, local to national governments, a vast number of institutes including research organisations as well as universities are currently taking innovation into account to survive the competition. At the same time, the myriad and rapid development of technology has already happened and driven many changes in many sectors in everyday life, e.g. the digitalisation. The digitalisation has caused the pace of innovation cycles become more intense, which consequently increases the awareness of the customers who have started to demand higher customer value. The digitalisation also enables new novel things in many sectors including in the road management and maintenance system. Technological advancement has changed the traditional methods and processes in this quite old- fashioned and traditional field, which support the collaboration, joint-development and innovativeness. During the last years, the road management and maintenance has been under heavy restructuring caused by the digitalisation, i.e. Intelligent Transport System, (ITS). At the same time, the privatisation of many functions of road management and maintenance has made the operation environment more fragmented. To some extent it can be assumed that the fragmentation sets challenges for the implementation of ITS solutions which are mainly based on interoperable and complementary solutions, which more than once are also quite an innovative as well. This study aims to clarify what the innovation capability of the Finnish Road Weather and Maintenance Network (FIRWE) is and how the current challenges through which the innovation capability could be increased. These research objectives will be achieved by studying the position of FIRWE in innovation typologies among several known collaboration concepts and identifying the maturity of it in the innovation challenge scale. In this paper, the FIRWE structure containing stakeholders' roles and functions as well as their relationships is initially introduced and presented as a descriptive model. After that, the study examines the current FIRWE position among the collaboration concepts and innovation typologies and its maturity level in term of innovation process. The study reveals that the current FIRWE position is between Zone 2 (business clusters) and Zone 3 (business ecosystem), and its maturity level is somewhere between 3rd and 4th generation of innovation process model. Finally, the study identifies the identified gaps and challenges toward the future FIRWE, and proposes possible solutions to tackle those challenges as recommendations.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Event18th SIRWEC 2016 Conference - Ft. Collins, United States
Duration: 28 Apr 201629 Apr 2016


Conference18th SIRWEC 2016 Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityFt. Collins


  • innovation
  • road weather
  • winter maintenance
  • collaboration
  • maturity
  • challenges
  • Finland


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