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Finland is a republic in northern Europe with approximately 5.2 million inhabitants and a land area of 340,000 km2. Life expectancy at birth is about 79 years and Finland faces the challenges of an ageing population. The literacy rate is 100%, the level of education is high and per capita income is among the highest in Western Europe. Finland has a relatively homogeneous population with Swedish speaking, Russian and Sami minorities. The Lutheran Church of Finland counts 82.5% of Finns among its members.

In the first half of the 20th century, Finland was a farm and forest economy. In paper mill communities, companies ran practically all issues related to workers' lives. Since World War II, Finland has made a transformation to a diversified modern industrial economy and built a Nordic welfare state. In this model, public institutions provided a societal safety net for Finns and levelled inequalities. Corporate responsibility for citizens was transferred to the state and municipalities (Juholin 2004; Mäkinen and Kourula 2008). At the same time, the environmental movement was born, pressuring companies to pay attention to ecological issues.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 14, 2010

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