An overhaul of the structures of the social welfare and health care services system has been going on in Finland for several years. The need for this reform emerged from problems in ensuring equal and adequate social welfare and health care services for the population under the existing municipality-based service structure as the dependency ratio changes. Small and financially weak municipalities have encountered significant difficulties in organising and producing services. In the present reform, responsibility for providing social welfare and health care services is being transferred to larger and hence stronger administrative entities. The Government has outlined the creation of autonomous areas for the purpose of organising social welfare and health care services. The objective in this operation is not only to create financially more viable bodies as service organisers, but also to achieve complete horizontal and vertical integration of social welfare and health care services. The National Institute for Health and Welfare is involved in the social welfare and health care (SOTE) reform in Finland in many ways. The mission of the Institute is to study, monitor, evaluate, develop and steer activities in the social welfare and health care sector. The Institute provides expert assistance in the ongoing reform through participation in the work of the civil service steering group preparing the reform and various project groups and through anticipatory evaluation of the impacts of the reform.