The chair is part of the Epanet network, which consists of 20 professors from six universities in Western Finland. The aim of the network is to entrench research activity in South Ostrobothnia and have the researchers engaged in interdisciplinary collaboration with each other, and especially with business and industry, educational institutions and local government.
The Alvar Aalto Chair embraces the development of the regional innovation environment of building, design and planning. Important partners include the City of Seinäjoki as well as other cities and municipalities of the region, Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences, the other Epanet chairs and companies of the regional construction cluster. Scientific partners include domestic and foreign universities, and naturally other units of Tampere University.
Collaboration in R&D projects increases the know-how of the actors and provides new business opportunities. Many cities already consider their built environment a significant success factor.
In addition to launching and leading projects, the job description of the chair includes supervision of doctoral students and diverse expert tasks. Collaboration with international universities allows the region access to the latest scientific knowledge and the chair also produces new and interesting results for the international scientific community.
The chair started in autumn 2009, and it is held by architect Ari Hynynen, D.Sc (Tech).