Taurimas Valys: our ambition is to boost Baltic Sea Region into another economic level

Baltic Sea Underground Innovation Network (BSUIN) project involves 14 partners, 17 associated organizations, 6 underground labs and many people who share their expertise of different fields in order to reach the aim of this project – to make the underground laboratories in the Baltic Sea region more accessible for innovation, business development and science. We would like to uncover the curtain and introduce specialists who work in this project so we are presenting series of articles about BSUIN project team members.

Today we have interviewed Taurimas Valys, who is a team leader of this Project at Vilnius University Business School and is responsible for business analysis of the wholeunderground laboratories (UL) network.

In your opinion, what is the biggest value of Baltic Sea Underground Innovation Network (BSUIN) project?


Taurimas Valys: I am sure that in general this Project is generating several advantages for its partner-countries, particular regions and even entire local businesses which have been linked with the underground facilities and (or) related researches (UL installed in former mines). First of all, one of the core goals of this Project is to develop a service offering of Baltic Sea Region’s underground laboratories in order to develop their capability to offer technology transfer utilizing the facilities and research infrastructures of the ULs for business development. By implementing this aim, particular outcomes will be generated. One of the added values planned to be generated at BSUIN project is that after the overall general business analysis it will be possible to emphasize the core potential directions for the ULs further development alternatives. While generating the outcomes of the Project there is a plan to promote additional (alternative) activities in these regions. For example, some of these laboratories (ULs) and related environment is located almost 1500 meters underground. In some of them the underground tunnels consists of around 150 kilometers of high quality infrastructure with stable temperature all around the year. It can be used for different purposes such as fish/shrimp breeding, farming, saving virtual data, disposal of nuclear waste, tourism and much more. Apart from the scientific research, the ULs can provide unique environments for various businesses, such as developing technology for mining and tunnel construction equipment or radiation shielding ULs can be sites for production, which is a new and growing field especially in the production of thermal energy or facilitating food production.

“The core goal of this Project is to develop a service offering of Baltic Sea Region’s underground laboratories”

It must be noticed that 6 ULs are involved in the BSUIN project: Callio Lab, Pyhäsalmi mine, Finland; Äspö Hard Rock Laboratory, Oskarshamn, Sweden; Reiche Zeche, TU Freiberg Research and Education mine, Germany; Conceptual Lab development co-ordinated by KGHM Cuprum R&D centre, Poland; Khlopin Institute Underground Laboratory, Russia; Ruskeala, Russia. Above all, this project aims to create a strong regional cluster, which will be vital, efficient, and attractive for investors and end-users. We have an ambition to create a very attractive platform, which will be competitive in international level. This will help to boost Baltic Sea Region into another economic level and it will attract foreign investors, encourage regional business cooperation (synergies between international market players) and sustainable development of SMEs in particular provinces.

What is the biggest benefit of the Project for both Vilnius University and Vilnius University Business School?


This project is substantial for the entire Baltic region and we are very proud of the fact that we are a part of it. This will allow us to share our experience and initiate new ideas for generating synergies between academic and business institutions. We are sure that Vilnius University and (or) other Lithuanian scholars will be able to use current and future underground facilities of BSUIN network and generate an added value for both local start-up development / R&D processes and the Baltic Sea Region at the same time. Of course, we are very glad to have such professional partners and we hope to have more opportunities to work together.

What particular benefits the Project is generating for you personally? In your opinion, which concrete skills and (or) former experience makes the biggest added value for this Project and its participants?


By being a Team leader of this Project, and parallel a key expert in charge of the Project Business analysis, I can transfer (share) my knowledge gained after 15 + years in international financial advisory area to our partners. In particular, we speak about several groups of skills of mine, which help to achieve the Project aims and tasks. For example, various analytical skills, strategic negotiations, project management, project finance in general will definitely encourage our further participation in similar programs, assure sustainable development of regional start-ups and SMEs and, finally, it will help to build a regional cluster suitable for both international competitiveness strengthening and accelerating new mutual projects among our current (BSR) consortium partners.

Exploring the ULs’ expectations for a CRM system

Choosing the right CRM system for an organization is challenging, which is why prior to the acquisition, precise CRM system requirements and specifications should be defined to support decision-making. One of the aims of the project was to provide CRM system requirements specification for the ULs. To explore the needs and limitations of the ULs, an online survey was used in this project.

OCTOBER 3, 2021

BIG DATA and global underground laboratories

In the EUL project, we develop better customer management and marketing processes for the partner laboratories and enhance the discovery and usability of the created online platform.


Lessons Learnt: Baltic Sea Region Common Identity

There are quite a few ideas, thoughts, lessons that you get as working in a transnational project team. The Baltic Sea Underground Innovation Network (BSUIN) project gave us a great opportunity to learn more about the common identity and differences that we have around our Baltic Sea.


EUL Innovation platform V1.1: implementing updates

One of the main aims of the EUL (Empowering Underground Laboratories Network Usage) project is to test and develop the EUL Innovation platform and to make the tool into a more user-friendly and more purposeful direction for the potential customers and the underground laboratory managers to use. To achieve it WP2 team with its leader Jose Garcia de Real organized interactive workshops to gather ideas on how to make it possible.

JUNE 6, 2021

Lessons Learnt: Actions towards the more sustainable Baltic Sea region

Baltic Sea Underground Innovation Network (BSUIN) project partners worked together to achieve the main targets of the project. At the same time we all gave our input to the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme 2014-2020 goal to support a more sustainable Baltic Sea region.

MAY 19, 2020

Study of natural background radiation in Callio Lab (Finland)

The Callio Lab is one of the six underground laboratories participating in the BSUIN project. The natural background radiation (NBR) measurements were performed in Callio Lab (located in the Pyhäsalmi Mine (Finland)) in July 2018 by a group from the University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland. The NBR measurement carried out at a depth of 1436 m (~4000 m w.e.) in the felsic volcanic bedrock occurs.

MAY 19, 2020

Open Day in Partner Institution – Institute of Physics, University of Silesia (Poland)

The BSUIN project was presented during the Open Day in Institute of Physics, University of Silesia (Poland).

MAY 14, 2020

Interview with Mia Pujol on intelligent lightning in underground conditions

The European Geoscience Union General Assembly 2020 was this year converted into EGU2020: Sharing Geoscience Online (#shareEGU20). The online program was held from 4th to 8th of May with inter- and transdisciplinary sessions, disciplinary sessions, Union symposia, and great debates. Short courses and other events took place in different formats.

OCTOBER 30, 2019

BSUIN project – great example of EU & Russia collaboration

Forum Strategov 2019 took place in St. Petersburg on 28.-29. of October 2019. In this event, separate part has been dedicated to the Baltic Sea region projects, seminar dialogue “The Baltic Sea Region: Russia-EU Transnational Cooperation Results and Perspectives” where Baltic Sea Underground Innovation Network (BSUIN) project was one of the examples of EU & Russia collaboration.

JUNE 17, 2019

Interview with Mia Pujol on intelligent lightning in underground conditions

Mia Pujol wrote her thesis on the topic of ”Lighting at the End of the Tunnel-The Design of Adaptive and Intelligent Lighting for an Underground Workspace”. She chose the research question with the determination to not fall into the trap of just formulating a very complex research question. ”When the topic of a thesis is as unique as mine is, there is often the tendency to over-complicate”, says Pujol. She thinks one of the most important things to achieve is to make the lighting accessible to a large number of people.

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