Description on public access to information of VATT Institute of Economic Research

1. Report on public access to information 

A data management unit must maintain a description of the information pool and the case register it manages in accordance with section 28 of the Act on Information Management in Public Administration (906/2019). The VATT Institute for Economic Research forms a data management unit as described in the Act. 

Public access to information and documents is one of the ways to assist citizens in targeting their requests for information. Under the Act on the Openness of Government Activities, requests for information on the contents of an authority's document must be sufficiently specified so that the authority can determine which document the request concerns (Act on the Openness of Government Activities (621/1999), section 13). It is the duty of the authority to assist the person requesting the information in identifying the document. The document description also describes the scope in which the authority processes information in producing services or handling matters. The possibility to obtain information from the authorities’ information pool serves the openness of the administration. 

2. Information service and requests for information

Please submit your request for information to the Registry [email protected], who will record them to track the deadlines. The Registry shall forward requests for information to the correct party in the organisation.

Please submit as specific requests for information as possible to make it easier to find the correct document. Requests for information must indicate the document(s) the request concerns. For example, you should always include the date or title of the document if it is known. If the request concerns a public document, there is no need to justify the request nor does the person requesting the information need to provide an explanation of where the information will be used. A request for information regarding a public document may be submitted, for example, either as a free-form written email request or by telephone. 

When requesting information on a confidential document(s), for which information may only be disclosed under certain conditions, the person making the request must indicate their intended purpose as well as verify their identity. VATT may also request additional information from the person requesting the information, if it is necessary to determine that the conditions for disclosure are met.

3. Information pools and purposes of the VATT Institute for Economic Research

The information pools of the VATT Institute for Economic Research consist of both administrative information pools and research information pools. 

3.1. Administrative information pools

The following are the administrative information pools of the VATT Institute for Economic Research. Administrative information pools are generally processed in the State’s general information systems as well as in the VATT case management system. 

Case register

The case register contains information on the initiation, processing and related documents related to the Institute’s duties and operations. In a data management unit, an information pool is one logical entity, which includes all metadata describing the processing of cases. Information in the case register is included in the case management system as well as in other support systems and paper archives.

Purpose: to carry out statutory case management duties
Examples of search terms: Register number, name of a party, date of decision
Systems: Tweb case and document management system, paper archive

HR information pool

Purpose: To implement the rights and obligations of employment

Examples of search terms: name, personal identity number, staff identity number (Kieku number) 
Systems: SAP HR management, Tweb case and document management system, personal data

Financial information pool

Purpose: To carry out financial duties, financial planning and monitoring, implementation and planning of purchases

Examples of search terms: name, partner name, project name, project number 
Systems: SAP financial management system, Tweb case and document management system, Handi purchasing and archive system

Stakeholder register

Purpose: Contact details for organising events and for other stakeholder communications

Examples of search terms: Name, email address, phone number
System: Gruppo contact management application

3.2. Research information pools

VATT Institute for Economic Research is a research institute that serves economic policy-making through research. Generally, VATT does not collect its own data, basing its research primarily on using extensive records collected by Statistics Finland, the Social Insurance Institution, the National Institute for Health and Welfare, and the Tax Administration. Usage rights and permissions to research material, as well as their use and users are monitored systematically and collected as statistics.

The Institute’s research work follows the research ethics guidelines of the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity. The information is protected appropriately. Material is not handed over. VATT keeps research information based on research agreements, research permits on specific research information pools, and statutory storage retention periods.

Research project information pools

Purpose: According to section 4 of the Act on the VATT Institute for Economic Research, VATT has the right to receive information from the authorities to carry out its duties. VATT research activities focus on five different themes: 1) Public services and local public finance, 2) Social security, taxation and inequality, 3) Labour market and education, 4) Energy, climate and environmental policy and 5) Business regulation and the international economy. 

VATT receives research data from various official sources, such as the Tax Administration, the Social Insurance Institution and Statistics Finland, as well as other public sources. Processing of data is always based on an approved research plan and each study has an appointed person responsible thereof. Materials generally contain information related to social security, income distribution, taxation and business activities.

Examples of search terms: personal identity number, business ID, name, income data, education data
Systems: systems of the collaborative authorities, NAS network drive

Research project register

Purpose: Management of research projects

Examples of search terms: researcher name, project name
Systems: NAS network drive

Output register

Purpose: Register of the outputs of research and expert activities

Examples of search terms: researcher name, project name
Systems: NAS network drive

4. Contact information for submitting requests for information

Registry address: VATT Institute for Economic Research, P.O. Box 1279, 00101 Helsinki
Email: [email protected] 

The Data Protection Officer of the VATT Institute for Economic Research can be reached at
[email protected]