The future campus of the University of Oulu

What the University of Oulu will look like in 2050? The campus entity vision working group consisting of University of Oulu students and staff has been working on three future scenarios: Campus as a City, City as a Campus and World as a Campus.

Three scenarios

The scenario drafts have been developed on the basis of a campus survey of the future carried out in the spring, and by consulting experts in various fields. In total, about 500 responses were received to the survey on the vision of the future campus of the University of Oulu. Experts’ perspectives have been heard on topics such as digitalisation, sustainable development and internationalisation in higher education. 

Campus as a City

The large campus area itself functions as a mini city that brings all faculties and functions together and offers services and encounters between the university community and the townspeople. At the core of the campus area is a center easily accessible by various means of transport, which is always open. This creates attraction and attracts services and events, tying all the townspeople to their own university.

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City as a Campus

City as a campus approach emphasizes the lively entity formed by the University of Oulu and the City of Oulu together. Discipline or program-specific units nurture communal spirit, and they are in several properties, bringing flexibility to the management of properties and request for different learning and research spaces. All units and versatile services are concentrated in the center area within walking distance. The sustainability of the urban campus consists of the resource-wise reuse of existing properties and the opportunities that can be realized by new construction. The city campus is easily accessible to everyone and everywhere, mainly by foot, bike, and public transport. 

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World as a Campus

The University of Oulu is an internationally acclaimed network producing education and research services and solutions. Campus is formed from network-based activities, which are spread into digital environments and mostly occasionally rented physical spaces in regional scope such as Northern Ostrobothnia, Finland or internationally. The University of Oulu offers a comprehensive experience of belonging to the scientific community and participation for all who desire it across the globe.

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Need for space has reduced

The 15-member campus vision working group includes university staff from each faculty, students and representatives from various service units. The campus vision working group started its work in March 2022, when the university's Board of Directors decided to launch a long-term visioning process for the campus.

Through digitalisation, studies and work are increasingly being done at freely selectable locations. The university’s overall need for space will be reduced and will focus on versatile, modifiable facilities.  

The scenarios have been presented to students and staff in November. Feedback has been gathered also through an online survey. The campus vision group will work on the scenarios further and submit a report to the university board in December.