Esko Aho keynote speaker

Former Prime Minister of Finland.
Chairman of the Board at East Office of Finnish Industries.
  • Economic Growth and Development
  • Economics & Politics
  • Political and Geopolitical Economy
  • Political Leadership
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Esko Aho was Prime Minister of Finland from 1991 to 1995. Today he is executive Chairman of the Board at East Office of Finnish Industries, a non-profit company of 25 leading Finnish corporations. East Office works to support the activities of its member corporations in the Russian market and promote Finnish industrial companies as partners for Russian firms seeking to increase their own domestic and global reach. Mr. Aho is elected member of the Executive Board at the International Chamber of Commerce and an invited member of the Club de Madrid, an independent organisation of former heads of state and government dedicated to strengthening democracy. He is a member of the Board of Sberbank, Russian´s biggest bank and in October 2017 was appointed as Chairman of the Board of Cinia Group Oy.

Since founded in 2010, Mr. Aho has been a board member at Skolkovo Foundation, a non-profit organization charged with creating a new science and technology development centre in the Moscow suburb of Skolkovo. In addition, he is Consultative Partner at Nokia. Mr. Aho’s other domestic and international activities are coordinated through his private consulting company Verbatum Oy. In 2016 he was named as Executive in Residence at Aalto University, where he works at the Department of Management Studies at the School of Business.

Esko Aho served as a member of Finnish parliament for 20 years before being elected to the Prime Minister´s Office in 1991. As the youngest prime minister in Finland's history, at age 36, Mr. Aho responded to his country's recession by implementing strong economic reforms and bringing Finland into the European Union. In his recent bid for Finland's presidency, Esko Aho lost by a narrow margin to Finland's first woman president. As an IOP Fellow, Mr. Aho led a weekly study group on the European Union and its political and economic implications for global relations. Mr. Aho was awarded the Grand Cross of the White Rose of Finland in 1992.

In 2000, Mr. Aho spent one year as a Resident Fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard University. He then served as President of the Finnish Innovation Fund SITRA from 2004 to 2008. From 2009 to 2012, Mr. Aho worked as the Executive Vice President of Corporate Relations and Responsibility at Nokia Corporation. In 2012, he was appointed as Senior Fellow at the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government (M-RCBG) at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Throughout his career, Mr. Aho has been active in the world of academia. He is a visiting lecturer at Beijing University and a member of the Industrial Advisory Board at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA). In March 2015, he was named as Executive in Residence at Aalto University, where he works at the Department of Management Studies at the School of Business. Mr. Aho holds honorary doctorate degrees from the University of Vaasa, Finland, and the University of Alberta, Canada.

Esko Aho was born in 1954. He holds a Master of Social Sciences of the University of Helsinki.

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