The effects of the city of Raasepor's empathy study have turned out to be partly surprising.
Image: Jenny Perklén
In Raasepori, residents' emotions towards their hometown and its neighboring areas were studied in 2021. The share of positive emotions was 60 percent, and negative 40 percent. Especially nature and the environment, housing and safety, and the experience of living in Raasepori created a positive engagement towards the hometown. Criticism or polarization was caused by, among other things, the municipal associations, decision-making, services, and bilingualism.
Even though disappointment was the most common individual emotion, the amount of positive emotions—especially contentment, pleasure, pride, joy, interest, and love – significantly exceeded it.
The results were analyzed both at the city and district level. The residents' experiences of their own neighboring areas were very positive and engaging. The most central emotion was pride in one's hometown.
The results have had far wider effects than expected
How beneficial have the data and results been in practice?
"We have actively utilized the empathy analytics results about Raasepori and its neighboring areas in our everyday work, especially in brand development and communications. This is exactly what we were aiming for. To our joy, the effects have turned out to be more extensive than we expected," says Jennifer Gammals, Development Manager at the city of Raasepori.
Gammals refers to the citizens’ reactions s and the change in the atmosphere when the results of the empathy study have been openly discussed with the residents in different contexts. Many imagine the public opinion to be more negative than it really is based on the impression created by the social media, for example. The truth has opened people’s eyes in Raasepori.
"The effect on people has been downright miraculous. The data-based understanding of the diverse positive experiences of others has changed attitudes. Positivity has become more acceptable. Positive and engaging emotions truly catch on, strengthen themselves and fuel a cycle of good," states Gammals.
In total 717 people participated in the Raasepori empathy survey, of which 620 lived in Raasepori.
Raasepori is located just over an hour's drive from Helsinki and Turku. It is regionally the largest city in the Uusimaa province, where Tammisaari, Karjaa and Pohja joined forces in 2009. In the city you can find, for example, the medieval castle of Raasepori, the award-winning design and craft center Fiskars Ruukki (Fiskars Ironworks), the idyllic old town of Tammisaari, the splendid Mustio Castle and the traditional ironworks of Billnäs. The Tammisaari Archipelago National Park and numerous forests, lakes and other valuable natural areas add to the attraction. There are many kinds of restaurants and cafes, and locally produced food can be found in the city's market places. Raasepori's cozy neighborhoods, active villages and diverse cultural events offer things to do all year round. More information https://www.raasepori.fi/
NayaDaya Inc. empowers its customers to identify the root causes of engagement and avoidance among their stakeholders. Empathy Analytics®, based on emotions, science, and data, reveals the reasons for employee and customer loyalty and loss, for example. Recurring snapshots help companies and organizations to target their actions, to build sustainable, profitable growth. Further information at https://www.nayadaya.com