Petra Theman

Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, Director of Public Diplomacy / Finland Promotion Board, Secretary General (Finland)

Petak 22/09/2017 12:30
Nordics Exposed Stage


Petra is a Finnish diplomat, public relations expert and the master mind behind one of the most successful digital PR campaigns when Finland became the first country in the world to develop a national set of emojis. Petra has been with the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs since 2003 where she has held several prominent positions, both in Finland and abroad. In 2007, Petra was selected the “Communicator of the Year ”, an award acknowledged by the Department for Communications at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. During the last three years, she has been the Director of Public Diplomacy and Secretary General of the Finland Promotion Board. The foreign service career was on hold for five years, while Petra was the CEO of Audiovisual Finland where she was responsible for export promotion and coaching for content and media industries. She was also a Public Relations and Communications Manager at Tellabs Inc., an IT and telecom company, where she worked on internal and external communications in the Nordics. Her previous experience in communications varies from working as a journalist for the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE to teaching in a Mexican youth prison.


Finland emojis - A Case Study in Digital Diplomacy of Today

Finland is the first country in the world to publish its own set of official, government approved country themed emojis. The Finland emoji collection contains 62 tongue-in-cheek emotions, which were created to explain some hard-to-describe Finnish emotions, Finnish words and customs. The Finland emoji collection has won numerous national and international awards in communications, advertising, digital diplomacy and country branding, among them the Viral Communications category at the Digital Communications Awards 2016 in Berlin, Best Use of Social Media in City, Nation, Place country branding awards London 2016 and Best Innovation of the Year in State of Digital Diplomacy Awards 2016. “Finland has many strengths, and also some weaknesses, just like any country,” says Petra. “Approaching country brand communications in this honest, authentic way has attracted unprecedented interest and numerous new contacts and collaborations.” The emojis reached around 250 million people globally.


Ida Prester

TV Host/Musician (Croatia/Serbia)