Aalto Global Impact promotes and facilitates Aalto University´s research and educational programmes for societal impact globally.

Aalto Global Impact promotes and facilitates Aalto University`s research and educational programmes for societal impact globally.

Aalto Global Impact


Facilitate and execute global sustainability projects in collaboration with multidisciplinary master’s programmes and courses to foster new settings for students to develop their capabilities in real-life environments.


Initiate and mobilize funding for new multidisciplinary research and innovation projects in the field of frugal and sustainable innovations, inclusive businesses, renewable energy, water and sanitation, ICT and digitalisation, new media and design thinking.


Engage academic and societal stakeholders to enable multicultural co-creation and a global network of sustainability practitioners.

Latest projects

PBL East Africa

PBL East Africa is a joint initiative between University of Dar es SalaamUniversity of NairobiMakerere University and Aalto University. Taking place in 2017–2020, the project engages faculty, students and external partners in the four countries to work on sustainable innovation challenges in East Africa. As a whole, the project operates as a piloting platform for the universities to test, share and refine best practices in problem-based education – while also building regional and global networks in an effort to share knowledge and deepen innovation capabilities in East Africa and beyond.

PBL South Asia

PBL South Asia develops best practices in problem-based education as a joint initiative between ten universities that are located in Finland, India, Nepal, Bhutan, the Netherlands and Lithuania. Taking place in 2018-2021, the project aims to strengthen the capacity of partner HEIs and contribute to local innovation ecosystems while integrating themes of sustainable development, social responsibility and human rights into educational practice through PBL.

04 September 2019 |

INVITATION: UniPID DocNet seminar 2019 Co-Creation of Knowledge
(Photo: Luis Alfonso Monje) Time: 10-11 October, 2019 Place: Aalto University, Espoo Aalto Global Impact will organize a DocNet seminar in collaboration with the Finnish development research doctoral network, UniPID DocNet on October 10-11, 2019 at Aalto University. This will be a two-day retreat, including both plenary and workshop sessions. The general theme of the Read more >

27 May 2019 |

PBL South Asia: Samulson Neupane wants to make learning more interactive and interesting
‘We need to clarify the importance and need of problem based learning pedagogy in our academic system in Nepal.’ PBL South Asia project brings together faculty from ten universities in Finland, India, Nepal, Bhutan, the Netherlands and Lithuania. The group develops best practices in problem-based education over the next two years. We interviewed Samulson Neupane Read more >

13 May 2019 |

‘An active community is the most important element of a successful co-working space’
Student-led workshops in MakEIC, Kampala, Uganda. Photo: Eva Duran Sánchez Students explored co-working and innovation culture in Uganda as a part of this year’s PBL East Africa projects. Their findings are applied in campus development – and beyond. Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre of Makerere University presented students from Aalto University and Makerere a set of Read more >


Teija Lehtonen

Aalto Global Impact’s Director

Teija Lehtonen is a director at Aalto Global Impact. She is passionate about co-creation and building inclusive innovation ecosystems together with people in low-income communities. Her vision for Aalto Global Impact is to find new sustainable ways to create wealth and reduce poverty.

Riina Subra

Senior Manager

Riina Subra is responsible for building partnerships and scaling up best practices for international collaboration. She has specialized in management work with international organisations, designing projects, strategies and partnerships for UNESCO and the UNDP.


Roope Kiviranta


Roope Kiviranta is the designer of Aalto Global Impact. He has worked as a designer in various roles and projects related to Graphic Design, Branding and Marketing. He’s a Bachelor of Applied Sciences, and holds an MA from Aalto University.

Avinash Dhital

Project Specialist

Avinash Dhital is responsible for co-ordinating and facilitating the project activities (mainly PBL South Asia). He is a graduate in Sustainable Energy Engineering with keen interest and expertise in capacity building, climate entrepreneurship and sustainable development in emerging markets.

Aalto Impact Ecosystem

Educational Programmes
International Design Business Management

International Design Business Management Master’s programme comprises international and multidisciplinary courses accompanied by a six-month industry project in collaboration with organisations from all over the world.

Sustainable Global Technologies

Sustainable Global Technologies programme runs a set of cross-disciplinary courses that look at the diverse connections between sustainability and technology in developing context. Student projects highlight environmental, social and cultural
aspects of sustainable development.

Creative Sustainability

Creative Sustainability Master’s programme focuses on ecological, social and economic sustainability challenges and solutions. It offers multidisciplinary courses and a real-life sustainability project with an enterprise, NGO or public sector.

Aalto-IITB DiDaCTiC Collaboration

Digital Design and Construction Technology in Coursework is a collaboration project between Aalto University and IIT Bombay. The project aims to initiate a long term educational collaboration between both universities, especially around topics of digitalization in construction and its potential role in improving the quality and performance of built environments across different parameters, e.g. affordability, sustainability, finish, comfort and air quality, etc.

Research and Innovation Projects
New Global

Integrates interdisciplinary research and new business development to co-create the sustainable business solutions of tomorrow.

Digital Opportunities

Creates an innovation ecosystem which develops digital services for citizens living in informal communities. We aim at designing and developing services for sustainable business in emerging markets.

Aalto WiT LAB

Aalto WiT (World in Transition) LAB is a network of researchers and projects focusing on resilient communities, human settlements, humanitarian architecture, environmental awareness, pre-disaster planning, reconstruction, sustainable technologies, community engagement and grass roots action.


Sustainability on Business Research provides knowledge about innovative business models and transition paths that enhance sustainable development, and co-creates solution proposals together with partners from different sectors of society.

AGrid Impact

A Grid Impact is the launchpad for startups who aim for big societal impact. We connect your vision to critical resources: co-creation space, community, and coaching.