Staff changes at FILI

Head of our FINNLAND. COOL. literature programme Maria Antas moves on to new challanges as of 1 February 2015. She will start a new literary agency in Berlin together with Susan Bindermann and Kristine Listau. The new agency called “Agentur Literatur Antas, Bindermann, Listau” focuses on both fiction and non-fiction and is active in Germany and beyond. Maria Antas will cover especially Finnish and Scandinavian authors.

Finnish State Translator Prize for Angela Plöger

Today at the Frankfurt Book Fair, Minister for Education and Culture Pia Viitanen awarded the Finnish State Translation Prize to Angela Plöger from Germany.

Angela Plöger (born 1942 in Danzig) received her doctorate at Hamburg University in Fennistics and has been translating Finnish literature into German for decades.

Her first translation, Tamara by Eeva Kilpi, was published back in 1974. Following this a total of 40 translations of Finnish novels were published and she also participated as a translation in numerous anthologies.

Her newest translations that are currently being talked about a lot are the novelThe Midwife by Katja Kettu (Finnish: Kätilö), whose sophisticated way of expressing herself and fluent German is being praised by critics, as well as When the Doves Disappeared by Sofi Oksanen (Finnish: Kun kyyhkyset katosivat). She also translated two earlier works by Sofi Oksanen.

Angela Plöger also translated work by Leena Lander from whom seven translations have been published, and also five novels by Eeva-Kaarina Aronen as well as four by Anja Snellman.

Angela Plöger also made a significant contribution to make contemporary Finnish drama well-known in German-speaking countries: she has translated more than ten Finnish plays. She also translated a large number of non-fiction books and scientific literature.

This year the Finnish Ministry for Education and Culture is awarding the Finnish State Translation Prize for the 40th time. The prize that is endowed with 15,000 Euros is awarded annually based on the nomination from the export organisation for Finnish literature FILI (Finnish Literature Exchange) to distinguished translators of Finnish literature. This year as an exception, the award was presented at the International Frankfurt Book Fair at which Finland is the guest of honour.

For more information, please contact:
FILI – Finnish Literature Exchange
Director Iris Schwanck, tel. +358 40 5080 331

FinnlandCool_mg_8781 AngelaPalkinto



FILI in Frankfurt

Finland is the guest of honour with the slogan FINNLAND. COOL. at Frankfurt Book Fair, which is held from 8 to 12 October.
Visit our campaign site:
FINNLAND. PROGRAMME. our book fair catalogue
FINNLAND. BÜCHER. publication (in German) presents the Finnish books published this year in German
FINNLAND. CULTURE PROGRAMME. publication (English/German) presents the Finnish programme in cultural institutions in Frankfurt

The whole programme of the Book Fair:


Caffè Helsinki in Milan

Finnish literature and culture in broader perspective are well represented currently in Milan, where the Caffé Helsinki event was launched on 26 May. Caffé Helsinki is scheduled to continue until 12 June. Finland’s presence in Milan was set off by Finland being guest of honour at Frankfurt Book Fair.

The Finnish writers participating in the event are Kari Hotakainen, Katja Kettu, Tuomas Kyrö and Rosa Liksom.

Applications for the Translator-in-residence programme

HIAP (the Helsinki International Artist Programme) and FILI offer a residency programme for translators of Finnish literature at Suomenlinna near Helsinki. The next three-week-long residency has been booked from 1 to 22 March 2015.

The residency programme covers travel, accommodation and a stipend. Accommodation is in guest rooms with a private bathroom as well as kitchenette, fridge, dining table and desk. There is internet access in the rooms, and HIAP’s office has a printer and scanner.

Please submit applications (no form required) along with an outline of the work you intend to undertake and your CV to . Use ‘Suomenlinnan residenssi’ as the subject of your message.

The period for submitting applications is 15 May – 13 June 2014. Applicants will be notified of the decisions in June 2014.

For more information, please contact


Learning Comes from Finland – Finnish expertise in educational materials also featured at the Frankfurt Book Fair

Finland is the Guest of Honour in 2014 at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the world’s largest event in the book publishing sector. The guest of honour project Finnland. Cool. also presents a Finnish account of the importance of reading, learning and education and their accessibility on an equal basis.

”The greatest assets of the Finns are not in the forests or the mines – though they are needed, too. The Finns’ greatest asset is education, high standards of expertise, the ability to understand what one reads and to gain knowledge.”

It was in these words that Finnish Minister of Culture Paavo Arhinmäki summarized the foundations of Finnish skills and competencies at the Frankfurt Book Fair of 2013. He defined education to be the cornerstone of equality and democracy in Finland: Almost all children and young people participate in publicly funded high-standard basic-level education of a uniform type. Professionally skilled teachers, who are required to complete a broad-based university-level degree of high requirements, are a guarantee of high-standard teaching. According to Minister Arhinmäki, investing resources and effort in education and learning explains why Finland has been successful.

Focus on learning and education

”For the first time in the long history of the Frankfurt Book Fair the national exhibit of the Guest of Honour extends to two exhibition halls and features both general publishing and the publishing of educational materials,” notes Iris Schwanck, director of FILI, which is also the coordinating body of the project.

Finnish skills and competency in education is a success story, the results of which are confirmed by results of surveys carried out world-wide. Finnish teachers are among the best in the world and fluid cooperation in developing schools, from the highest level of government down to the pupils, is a significant asset for educational success in Finland. The Frankfurt 2014 project presents Finnish expertise in education and educational materials to international professionals in learning and education in a focused manner with broad scope. The strategic aim is to increase Finnish exports of educational solutions. The fair pavilion and the graphic aspects of the project were designed by students in association with Aalto University.

The Guest of Honour project is coordinated by the FILI organization for the export of Finnish literature. The Learning Comes from Finland section presenting educational materials is by the educational materials working group of the Finnish Book Publishers Association. Department for Higher Education and Science Policy of the Ministry of Education and Culture has also granted seprate funding for this purpose.

This is the largest cultural export event of its kind held by Finland and its programme will be prepared in association with Finnish publishers, other literature experts and leading ministries and cultural actors. Owing to Finland’s status as Guest of Honour, Finnish literature and solutions in educational matters will be the subject of a great deal of attention at the Book Fair and throughout the year in German and international media.

For more information, please contact:
Iris Schwanck / FILI – Finnish Literature Exchange, Tel. +35840 5080 331,
Teuvo Sankila / Educational Materials Working Group of the Finnish Book Publishers Association Tel. +358 50 3737474,