The goal is to preserve clean waterways for future generations. Photo: Manu Eloaho.

Promoting the purity of water systems


Clean water and environmental safety are some of the top priorities in the South Savo region in Mikkeli.

Promoting environmental safety

In Xamk, environmental safety means sustainable use of natural resources, increasing the eco-friendliness of business life and ensuring a clean and healthy living environment. 

The key areas of Xamk’s Environmental Safety and Water Technology group are clean technological solutions for bio-, water and circular economy as well as intelligent monitoring practices and management of environmental safety and health risks. These help to promote, for example, sustainable water treatment and the profitability of clean-tech-related businesses in the region.

Xamk’s Environmental Safety and Water Technology group specialises in measuring, monitoring, modelling and treatment of different storm water, natural waterways, wastewater and industrial waters. The aim of testing and piloting different kinds of waters is to improve environmental safety and minimize health risks. Intelligent monitoring and water process optimization and management (ground water, wastewater and process water) also increases business opportunities in the region.

Blue economy testing and piloting in Xamk

The work promotes the cleanliness of water systems and the closed circulation of nutrients and contributes to translating the water expertise in the region into business activities. Xamk is a BEM Mikkeli Water Cluster member and Water Smart Territories (WST) partner.

Cooperation is carried out with the BEM Mikkeli cluster, companies, other research institutes and municipalities to meet objectives related to water management and the circular economy both regionally in South Savo and nationally and internationally in the Baltic Sea region. The research is supported by the Degree Programme in Environmental Technology, the environmental laboratory, the Vesikko and Bioluuppi demonstration environments, and other BEM actors.

Training water experts

Water expertise is one of the priorities of the Degree Programme in Environmental Technology. The programme covers areas such as water chemistry, water sampling, natural waters, water management, water treatment, and clean water supply. The environmental engineers graduating from the programme have successfully found employment in both private-sector organisations and administrative tasks. We also train international experts in our new Degree Programme of Water Technology and Sustainability, which starts in the autumn of 2025.

Xamk’s research and development activities and environmental technology degree programme work together in the environmental laboratory on the Mikkeli campus. Photo: Manu Eloaho.

Students completing a master’s degree in environmental technology get a broader view of the administrative tools and risk management in the water sector. Water expertise is also addressed from the perspective of sustainable water management in the Master’s Degree Programme in Sustainable Development Technologies. All the degree programmes utilise the Environmental Laboratory in their teaching, as the laboratory enables us to familiarise ourselves with the basics of water chemistry and carry out applied projects in water analytics.

Environmental technology training is conducted in close cooperation between companies and RDI operators in the region. Cooperation is often concretised in the form of internships and theses. We are training new water experts for the region’s future needs.

South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences (Xamk) promotes solutions that renew entrepreneurship, internationalisation, and business through education and research, development, and innovation activities. Xamk employs over 900 professionals on four campuses (Kotka, Kouvola, Mikkeli, and Savonlinna) and has over 12,000 students.

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Mikkeli Water Week 2024

Mikkeli – The Capital of Clean Water – Water is vital for life. Our lake nature is extremely valuable, and our province has the cleanest waters in the world. Water, forest and food are the focus points of the regional strategy of South Savo. More information about Mikkeli Water Week 2024: Mikkeli Water Week 2024.

Writer Hanne Soininen and Juho Rajala

Head of Research Group, D.Sc. (Tech) Hanne Soininen works at the Mikkeli campus of the South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences – Xamk in the Environmental Safety and Water Technology research group, and Director of Education Juho Rajala, Ph.D., Forestry and Environmental Technology Education Unit.