EUI programme for European cities launches first call


European cities are facing major challenges, for instance in terms of sustainability, security and equal opportunities. To help cities tackle these challenges, a brand new EU programme is being launched this autumn: the European Urban Initiative (EUI). This article provides more information on the initiative and its first call for proposals.

European Urban Initiative: objective and target group

The ‘European Urban Initiative’ is intended to help European cities address key contemporary urban challenges in fields such as climate change, environment and sustainability, digitalisation, public health and security, demographic changes and growing social inequality. These complex challenges call for creative, innovative solutions. The programme will be supporting cities in this.

The EUI programme offers opportunities to cities large and small, and focuses in particular on municipal decision-makers and policymakers. The programme also (indirectly!) offers opportunities for other parties who want to roll out their innovation in and together with a municipality. The programme is a continuation of previous initiatives like URBACT III and the UIA calls (Urban Innovative Actions).

Grants for which projects (and how much)?

The EUI programme works based on thematic calls for proposals: each call will invite cities to submit proposals for innovations in line with the call’s requirements. So the themes of the calls are always the starting point, but there is also plenty of room for the municipality’s ‘own input’ (i.e. their own innovations/plans, tested solutions, lessons learned, and so on). The best proposals stand a chance of getting a grant. The grant reimburses up to 80% of the project costs and can be as much as 5 million euros per project. When assessing submissions, consideration will be given to matters such as regional impact, scalability, replication potential, cost versus benefit, and the extent to which the proposed project is in line with other policy objectives and priorities, for instance, concerning green and digital transitions.

Theme and focus of the first EUI call

The first EUI call was launched on 11 October and is open until 19 January 2023 (14:00 CET). Budget: 50 million euros! The call’s theme, ’the New European Bauhaus’ (NEB), focuses on innovation proposals in the fields of: a) circular and carbon-neutral construction and renovation; b) preservation of cultural heritage; c) affordable housing solutions through modifying/transforming buildings; and d) regeneration of urban spaces.

    What can EGEN do for you?

    EGEN has many years of experience in innovation projects for and by urban districts. Are you working as a municipality on urban innovations, and are you interested in becoming a ‘NEB-demonstrator’? Or is your technology company developing new innovations for or with municipalities? We can help you to find out what your chances are of being awarded a grant, perhaps within the EUI or another programme? Send us your plans using the contact button or form below and we will tell you all about the opportunities we can identify.

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