Strategy of the Sodankylä Geophysical Observatory

Services for space-dependent societies, built on long-term scientific competence

The Observatory is a pioneer in the scientific monitoring of the changing space and geoenvironment, and in solving global Arctic challenges. We generate new information on the global changes and their causes, as well as connections between space and atmosphere. We build state-of-the-art instrumentation and make discoveries based on unique observations. The Observatory is an independent department of the University of Oulu. It carries out national and international duties related to the long-term monitoring of natural phenomena and hazards, and the related risk assessments, warnings, and forecasts, providing resilience and preparedness.

Strategic goals


We conduct impactful cutting-edge research in geophysics, space science, and the related fields. We develop and maintain long-term space and geophysics measurements, scientific infrastructures, whilst also designing and building world-class observing devices. We produce long-term, globally unique series of scientific observations on changes occurring in space and the geoenvironment, which are vital for addressing global challenges. We innovate on technical solutions for new types of measurements and for research conducted on Earth and in space.


We educate individuals who are eager and capable of learning, preparing them for service across various sectors of society, including fulfilling the special duties of the Observatory. We provide education, grounded on top-tier knowledge, tailored to meet both regional and global needs, and designed to foster academic career development. We create teaching materials that cover magnetism, space climate, and other research fields pertinent to the Observatory. We host international Observatory Days, organize meetings, field courses, workshops, summer and winter schools, as well as public training events to promote scientific education and engagement.

Societal interaction

We generate essential information and operational services to safeguard society’s vital functions. Our efforts include constructing and upholding infrastructures of national and international significance, alongside delivering high-quality services derived from continuous measurements across various societal sectors. We define global standards by producing world leading scientific observations on selected research areas and critically assess observations from other sources to uphold the quality of global measurement networks. We engage in a broad international network, collaborating with observatories, other authorities, research institutes, and companies, to foster advancements and share knowledge.

Well-being of the community

We foster an attractive workplace characterized by clear principles, a flexible work environment, and a deep respect for diverse skills. This approach not only promotes a healthy work-life balance but also empowers our employees. We advocate for the development of new skills, taking on responsibilities, celebrating our collective achievements, and adapting to changing work conditions with flexibility. Compliance to our agreed policies is essential, ensuring a work environment that is both enjoyable and safe for everyone.

The Observatory is dedicated to the well-being of its employees, the broader work community, societies, and the planet. Our actions reflect a commitment to nurturing a positive and sustainable work culture that extends beyond our immediate environment.