In roboticsweek 2015 we got a great idea from Mikko Puputti from Robocoast company network. Puputti’s idea was to bring together Nordic robotics clusters for tighter and more versatile cooperation. We in Airo Island were excited about this possible collaboration with other robotic clusters and took upon the idea starting to contact other clusters. First we contacted Robotdalen from Sweden and RoboCluster and OdenseRobotics from Denmark. We all agreed on that collaboration and tighter connections could be a very good idea and that’s basicly how NordicBot was created. We saw NordicBot as a great way to enhance the collaboration of the Nordic robotics scene and by networking with our robotic clusters, we could help companies in other Nordic countries to network with each other.

The first NordicBot-event was arranged 15.4.2016 in Helsinki. We had a seminar day in which all the five clusters presented themselves and told about their organizations. We heard an interesting speech from Danish ministry of economics. It was very exciting to hear how the other clusters work in different countries and how their strategies and ways of acting are. Even though you might think that robotic clusters in neighboring countries that have quite the same goals and operating principle of promoting robotics would work in the same way but that was not the case, surprisingly. We were interested to hear that all clusters actually have very different histories and that they work quite differently, actually. Advocates and visitors from other Nordic countries and clusters were quite intrigued in how the other clusters came to exist and what they have been working on. It was fascinating to learn about the other clusters and think about possible ways to cooperate in the future. We started to think about the roles of different clusters in NordicBot.

NordicBot schedule

As we did learned from each other’s clusters and operating principles in the first part of NordicBot, in the afternoon we concentrated on the views of the future collaborations. We brainstormed different ideas about fields robotics can be applied to today and in the future. In this area we were all quite in the same page as we all saw healthcare, industry and service robotics as the most important application areas in the near future. All countries shared many similar issues in these areas as well as possibilities and chances to develop. We thought this created a great base for future collaborations as the areas of interest were quite the same. We discussed on how we could enhance our communication and create tighter information system. As we are very interested on the same areas, it would be useful and practical to share information with each other. We are looking forward on future collaborations and chances to get acquainted with other clusters way of working.

So we could say that the first NordicBot was a success! NordicBot becomes a yearly event which we in Airo Island are excited about. NordicBot will be hosted by a different cluster each year and as this sping NordicBot was arranged in Finland, the next april NordicBot will be hosted by RoboCluster in Denmark! We hope that Iceland joins NordicBot next year so that our network of Nordic countries would be complete. We are looking for the next NordicBot 2017 in Denmark and future collaboration with the other Nordic robotic clusters. This will be such a great way to create connection in robotics field with other Nordic countries!

Written by Nina Lukin

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