The basis for the project was that there were good opportunities for cooperation with companies in the Republic of Karelia and elsewhere in Russia that had not been recognised or utilised by companies in the Kainuu region. Beginning cooperation with Russia requires suffi cient contacts, expertise, and knowledge of procedures. It was understood to be in the best interests of the border area and the development of the Kainuu region to open the eyes of future decision-makers and entrepreneurs in Kainuu as well as develop their international know-how and cooperation skills within the local region. Th e goal of the project was to develop the operational prerequisites and professional expertise of young and future entrepreneurs with regard to cooperation with Russia. In addition, the project was to create a network between young entrepreneurs in Kainuu and the Republic of Karelia, which would be capable of handling international business and project activities in addition to supporting the development of the border region and Kainuu. Th e project was also to include learning about international cooperation, business and project operations as well as planning joint projects related to supporting entrepreneurship with the young entrepreneurs of the Republic of Karelia.
The project changed its course from the original project plan and an application for changing the project plan was submitted and consequently obtained. This way the project could better serve the societal needs of the target area. The limited amount of interest expressed by local companies toward the projects training and activities was seen as a challenge. Nevertheless, participation in the events was relatively good. The project organised two entrepreneurship events in Petrozavodsk, carried out international business training including an orientation visit to St. Petersburg, arranged regional and cultural knowledge training, organised Russian language training in Kajaani and provided project operational training, as well as an orientation visit to Petrozavodsk with the young entrepreneurs of Intotalo entrepreneurship training centre. At minimum, the project created positive perception of Russias university environment and IT industry. The activities of Intotalo and local entrepreneurs were introduced to Russians on trips arranged during the project. In addition, the Russian partners presented the opportunity to meet local experts and entrepreneurs in the IT industry and discuss potential cooperation projects. In fact, project applications were planned together with entrepreneurs that participated in the project. One of these was the Business Environment for Gaming Expertise on the Border Region project, which received funding and has, in addition to this project, participated in initiating and supporting transborder entrepreneurship. The Kajaani Unit of the Department of Information Processing Science assumed cooperation activity with Russia in a manner that also supports cooperation with IT companies in Russia and Kainuu. During the project, the possibility for educational cooperation and teacher exchanges were studied and the ICT cluster research was started. In addition, the Kajaani Unit of the Department of Information Processing Science also opened a representative office at the Petrozavodsk State University and launched operations there.