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25 February 2016

CEPPI project releases first e-newsletter

The EU-funded CEPPI (Coordinated energy-related PPI actions for cities) project, which aims to develop the capacity of public authorities to implement innovation procurement solutions for energy-related projects, has released the first edition of its e-newsletter. This inaugural issue introduces readers to how the five CEPPI cities - Birmingham (UK), Budapest (Hungary), Castelló and Valencia (Spain), and Wrocław (Poland) - are identifying opportunities to save energy through PPI.

The newsletter covers the PPI Gap Analysis undertaken by the cities, including how it has encouraged them to consider their strengths and weaknesses relating to PPI and to set a baseline against which they can review their progress. It also provides information on the identification of energy hotspots and of possible areas of PPI intervention. The participation of CEPPI partners in the Procura+ Seminar held in Barcelona (Spain) is also highlighted.

Each newsletter will focus on a CEPPI city, with Valencia the first in the series. The e-newsletter will be published every six months, providing both project updates and related news. Those interested in receiving the next edition can subscribe online.

To view the newsletter, click here.

 

23 February 2016

PPI included as action point in new Vienna innovation strategy

The implementation phase for the Austrian capital of Vienna’s new innovation strategy was officially launched at the ‘Vienna Innovation conference’ on 20 January 2016. Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI) plays a significant role within the new “Innovative Vienna 2020” strategy, which was adopted by the Viennese City Council on 23 September 2015. The strategy adopts a broad definition of innovation, encompassing social, technical and organisational goals.

The primary aim of the strategy is to solidify Vienna’s position as an innovative city and to ensure that the city becomes an incubator of innovation. Stimulating innovation-friendly public procurement was defined as one of eight fields of actions to achieve the city's objective. Supporting PPI is seen as a means to not only improve public services, but to attract innovative companies to the city.

“Vienna is a dynamic and innovative city in the heart of Europe. In economically difficult times, it is absolutely necessary to consistently invest in promising and innovative fields. After all, innovation does not only mean technological progress, but also social progress," said Economic Councillor Renate Brauner.

For more information, visit ots.at.

 

19 February 2016

Water PiPP releases guidance on procurement of innovation in the water sector

New guidance for applying innovative procurement in the water sector has been published by the EU-funded Water PiPP project. The guide provides a step-by-step approach to the process of procuring innovative goods and services, identifying challenges specific to the water sector. Currently available in English, it is foreseen that the guide will be translated into Spanish, French and Dutch.

The guide is specifically written for public and semi-public water authorities involved in procurement procedures, as well as public procurers. It aims to equip them with an overview of the legal and practice dimensions of public procurement of innovation. The guide advocates nine steps to procuring innovation in the water sector, covering such topics as designing a water procurement strategy, market consultation, managing intellectual property rights, assigning award criteria, and evaluating results.

The benefits and expected positive outcomes of applying procurement of innovation are also listed. Links to other resources which may be of interest to procurers are provided at the end of the guide. The Water PiPP project aims to stimulate demand for sustainable water solutions through innovative and pre-commercial procurement.

For more information, download the guide [PDF].

 

16 February 2016

Procurers invited to tour sustainably renovated building in Ludwigsburg

The iNSPiRe project is inviting public procurers to visit a sustainably renovated residential building in Ludwigsburg (Germany) on 14 April 2016 to see the latest innovations on the market first hand and to gain an insight into the process of renovating publicly-owned buildings. The City of Ludwigsburg will outline their procurement approach while technical partners of the iNSPiRe project will explain the solutions used and how they can be implemented in other building types.

The renovation packages developed by iNSPiRe are capable of reducing the primary energy consumption of a building to lower than 50 kWh/m2/year, and can be installed without major interruption to the building’s occupants. The Ludwigsburg building has been converted into a nearly-zero energy building with minimal disruption to residents.

Participation in the event is free of charge, but early registration is required. Participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation arrangements. A limited amount of funding is available to support attendance.

To register for the study tour and to enquire about funding, contact marlene.grauer@iclei.org.

 

11 February 2016

European Commission invites procurers interested in PPI and PCP to take survey

The European Commission has launched a survey targeted at procurers, the results of which will guide the allocation of funds for the next Horizon 2020 Working Programmes. The survey aims to collect data from public procurers that intend to procure an innovative solution in the coming years. A budget of around €130 million is available under the 2016 - 2017 Horizon 2020 Work Programmes to support procurers that join together to implement joint cross-border Pre-Commercial Procurements (PCP) or Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI).

The short questionnaire asks which type of innovative ICT solutions are of most interest to the procurer’s organisation, giving selectable examples such as advanced computing, software services or applications, and human-centric ICT solutions. It also enquires as to the organisation's potential interest in collaborating with other procurers and the organisation's experience in innovation procurement.

The survey is hosted on the eafip website, a European Commission supported initiative that focuses on promoting the benefits of innovation procurement, as well as providing training and assistance to public procurers with an interest in implementing innovation procurements of ICT based solutions across the EU.

To take part in the survey, visit the eafip website.

 

8 February 2016

PPI Award winner showcased by euronews

A new video by euronews puts the spotlight on the environmentally friendly wastewater recycling system procured by the Austrian Mint, the purchase of which saw the Austrian Federal Procurement Agency take home the 2015 PPI Award. The ‘Business Planet’ report looks broadly at how innovation can help SMEs to win public contracts, using the Austrian Mint’s procurement of a wastewater recycling facility from Schell GmbH & CO.KG, a family-run business with around 20 employees, as a particularly fitting example.

Company CEO Sonja Schell spoke about her pride in working with the Austrian Mint to find an innovative solution, and the broader recognition that working with such a major organisation has brought. The solution provided by Schell GmbH enabled the water required as part of the coin production process to be cleaned and used again, saving 4 million litres of water per year.

Manfred Matzinger-Leopold, the executive director of the Austrian Mint, said that Schell GmbH was chosen as it managed to find the best balance between providing high water quality and price, as well as the system being relatively easy to install and maintain. The report underlines how procurement of innovative products and services can improve access to markets for SMEs and foster market uptake of innovations.

For more information, visit the euronews website.

 

4 February 2016

JRC study imagines future scenarios based on the rise of eco-industries

A new study by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) looks at the long term industry trends for sustainable resource use, and the consequences these trends will have on emission reductions and environmental resources, as well as employment and economic opportunities. The study envisages possible future scenarios that could arise and the potential impacts on EU policy.

Within each scenario, the authors simulate a landscape populated by different eco-industries, incorporating predicted trends such as the global population reaching 8.6 billion, global warming reaching 2 degrees Celsius, and an increase in people living in urban areas. Continuing technological development in the fields of ICT, biotechnologies, mobile technology, and so on is also accounted for.

To illustrate these complex scenarios, the authors created four characters: Clement, Sophia, Leo and Leila. Each character, who is possessed of different attributes, is placed into each of the scenarios; naturally, each character adapts better to a different version. By creating these predicted worlds, the JRC is helping policy makers to consider and engage with future issues, enabling them to plan in advance. As well as policy makers, the document has proven to be popular among a wide range of stakeholders.

For more information, visit the JRC website.

 

2 February 2016

BioSpain to examine relation between public procurement of innovation and the bioeconomy

The biotech event ‘BioSpain’, one of the largest biotech events in the world, will take place in Bilbao, Basque Country, from 28 - 30 September 2016, and will include a session on innovation in public procurement. Speakers from the Regional Government of Galicia (Spain), PIANOo – The Dutch Public Procurement Expertise Centre, the Agency for Health Quality and Assessment of Catalonia (Spain), and the National Institutes of Health (USA) will address participants, discussing the benefits of procuring innovation and the potential uses of new biotechnologies.

Other issues to be raised at the session, titled ‘New gaming rules: innovation through Innovative Public Procurement’, are the challenges and opportunities of launching PPI and PCP contracts, the rules of those contracts, and the expectations companies have.

Companies seeking international financing or partners will have the opportunity to present their business project to the audience, while the session ‘The European Commitment for Bioeconomy’ will explore the future of the bioeconomy in Europe.

For more information, visit the BioSpain website.