Technology Industries Finland

“Data is [already] being shared, there are technical solutions (…) and there’s business interest.”
Jussi Mäkinen – Head of digital regulation
Technology Industries Finland

Technology Industries Finland

The combination of electronics, electrotechnical, mechanical and metals industries, engineering consulting and information technology is the most important export industry in Finland, with operations constituting over 50% of all exports.

Technology Industries of Finland 1 (TIF) is the advocacy organisation for the companies in these industries, with over 1,600 members. They promote competitiveness and the operational preconditions for the industry. Among their activities, they safeguard the industry’ interests in national and EU-level decision-making and negotiate collective agreements on behalf of their members.

Over the last year TIF has dedicated substantial effort into observing the use of data in the industry. Data is today instrumental to its effectiveness and the way Finnish companies use it data is changing 2 . It is TIF’s analysis that companies store large amounts of various data, but so far there have been no established practices for agreeing on the rights to use data, particularly when sharing it across organisation. To address this need TIF has developed model terms and conditions for data sharing, that is now being promoted in the country and beyond. 3

In October 2019 the Support Centre for Data Sharing had the opportunity to interview in Helsinki TIF’s Antti Poikola, co-lead of TIF’s AI Accelerator, and Jussi Mäkinen, head of digital regulation.

Addressing the limitations of nondisclosure agreements and intellectual property rights models

TIF’s project aimed to create model terms and conditions and was initiated in early 2019 in response to the realisation that data sharing was already happening in the technology industries. More than half of the Finnish companies stated in a survey that they share data already in one form or another. Both the business interest and the technological means to deliver data sharing are already there. However, the contractual terms under which data sharing was taking place were dominated by either non-disclosure agreements (NDA’s) or intellectual property rights (IPR) assurance models. Those are not ideal because they are, respectively, too restrictive or based on concepts of property and exclusivity. Research indicated that no other more suitable practices were common.

At the same time, the legal teams in organisations cannot be expected to write original contracts, as it is a complex activity to be performed by teams that are usually challenged by capacity and workload.

TIF’s model terms and conditions for data sharing

TIF realised that writing even just industry-agnostic standard model terms that could cater for most legal elements and apply to most situations would have been significant progress already. The terms are also intended to be compatible and live along with competition and personal data protection legislation in the European Union such as GDPR. In addition to that, they decided that the most suitable framing for those terms would have been to be an addendum to the (most likely) pre-existing agreement between the parties involved in data sharing. The terms are also suitable to extend an agreement to additional third parties, e.g. an AI analytics company that joins the collaboration later, as the need for their contribution is identified.

Finally, learning from the consulting industry, a key characteristic of the model terms is the right for participating parties to retain their learning of professional skills and experience that originated from using the shared data.

What happens next

The model terms are available commercially from Teknova's webstore 4 and are now in a roll-out stage. Their use is being monitored in trials and learnings collected by TIF to feed into potential future iterations of the work.


Technology Industries Finland’s "model terms and conditions for data sharing”


Technology industries such as electronics, electrotechnical, mechanical and metals industries, engineering consulting and information technology.


European Union




2019, trials ongoing


Business model




Type of organisations


Data sharing model(s)


Core impact

Industry-agnostic standard model terms cater for most legal elements for most situations and most companies as they enter data sharing agreements.


Technology Industries of Finland is the advocacy organisation for the companies in these industries. They promote competitiveness and the operational preconditions for this.

Technology Industries Finland
Image credit:
(c) 2019 Technology Industries of Finland

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