Fiskars Oyj Abp, Finland

In Pojo, in Vester Nyland, there is a company and an area called Fiskars. Fiskars Company Ltd, Finland's oldest industrial company, has, despite its growth and international expansion, never forgotten its roots in Pojo, which go back to 1649.

These emotional ties have been expressed in a determined endeavour to maintain and develop the district for a living community.

In the 1970s and 1980s Fiskars itself became too small for the expanding industrial firm, and consequently the area was dying. So, in about 1987, in order to give new life to the place, the industrial firm began to invest both spiritual and material resources in a determined and open-minded effort to attract new permanent residents to the district, as well as spending millions of euros on renovating buildings and making the surroundings as attractive as possible.

This bold stake has been a great success. Today the district is seething with life. Co-operative guilds for artists, tradespeople and designers have hundreds of members, and the activities and atmosphere of the place attract approximately 100,000 visitors every year.

In addition to this initiative the Fiskars company has been a pioneer in the protection of nature and the countryside. 10 per cent of the Fiskars concern's land is protected as natural conservation areas (undeveloped archipelago areas, untouched marshes and old forests as well as groves and lakes) and the Fiskars company has been a pioneer and one of the major players in cultural biotopes.

The Fiskars company is nominated for the prize because, despite the fact that it is a corporation dealing with quarterly finances, it has also for a long time progressively “contributed to the increase in visibility, sustainability, use and management of the invaluable cultural landscapes in the Nordic region in such a way that the overall natural and cultural values are maintained and developed".