The idols of Finnish teenagers are now on YouTube

Kids don’t watch TV anymore; they watch YouTube instead. This statement is becoming common in many countries worldwide and Finland is not an exception: recent data show that 18% of Finns between 15 and 39 years of age watch YouTube every day.

The national YouTube community is in a continuous growth: 357 YouTube channels have more than 10,000 subscribers and 45 channels have got over 100,000 subscribers. ...  (continue reading)

Go with the Flow

One of the best things about festivals is that you are able to check out lots of different artists and that the atmosphere can change completely in a matter of minutes. This is the case of Helsinki’s Flow Festival as well.


The first day was all about raving, when Major Lazer tore the place down. The second day was wrapped in rainbow colours, and Belle & Sebastian, Years & Years ...  (continue reading)

Smile like a Hanko biscuit

“When you are really happy, in Finland we say smile like a Hanko biscuit.”

This was what Leena, our tour guide in Hanko said before she got off the bus. On the way to our accommodation I kept thinking about the ‘Hanko biscuit smile’. Actually that was the exact expression we all had on our faces all day long today.

On our fourth day we had a bus tour to Hanko and during the trip Professor ...  (continue reading)

Taste Helsinki

What does Helsinki taste like? Teurastamo  ̶  the Abattoir in English  ̶  and its many events offer impressive fresh food culture and creative industries, such as fancy food workshops, whisky and breweries.

Walking in the deserted space of Teurstamo (I mean it’s massive), I thought about a similar old slaughterhouse in Shanghai, nowadays called “1933 ...  (continue reading)

Diving into Finnish culture and customs

The second day of our programme was partly dedicated to Finnish culture and Finnish national character.

It’s really easy for me to work with the Finns but considering my experience of communicating with Finnish people I can say that they’re a little bit strange even for Russians.

In my opinion the main difference between the Finns and Russians is in their punctuality and compliance with the laws. ...  (continue reading)

The sustainable Finnish life

Sustainability is the word I have been thinking about during my first days in Finland.

The Finns are firmly connected with the nature of their country and appreciate that the world is responsible for giving them the resources we all need to live our daily lives. Finnish forests are an intrinsic part of their  ...  (continue reading)

A good start

It’s finally here, I’m finally here! First impressions are important and, for me, my first impression of Finland was surprising – in a good way.

I expected Helsinki to be more big-city-like, many people on the streets, lots of cars, sort of noisy… But it was very different and very calm: people riding their bicycles, walking their dogs, chilling on the beach. It was a very nice ...  (continue reading)

It’s here! First day of thisisFINLAND Foreign Correspondents’ Programme

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland will organise thisisFINLAND Foreign Correspondents’ Programme on 10–28 August 2015. During the three-week programme, a group of young international journalists will have an opportunity to learn more about Finland, Finnish society and the Finnish way of life.

Check out the programme outline, official press release and a list of participants.

Opening up to the world

Why do I participate in thisisFINLAND Foreign Correspondents’ Programme? Can anything surprise me in Finland as I live just two hours from its border, in Pietari (= St. Petersburg)?

I’ve interviewed the previous President of the Republic of Finland Tarja Halonen and visited Slush...  (continue reading)

Exploring the Finnish mindset for solutions

As a journalist, I’ve always been fascinated with solutions. That’s because much of the criticism around the news industry has been that it focuses too heavily on what is wrong with the world. While I agree that we must show the injustices, we can also highlight some of the answers to those injustices.

So, I joined a group of fellow journalists in the US who are focusing on “solutions journalism” ...  (continue reading)