Urenio Watch Watch: Innovative Cities & Regions

European Capital of Innovation Finalist Cities

i-capital_picBarcelona, Espoo, Grenoble, Groningen, Malaga and Paris are the six cities shortlisted for the first European Capital of Innovation award, or iCapital. The award will go to the city building the best “innovation ecosystem’ – connecting citizens, public organisations, academia, and business – with a view to helping the city scale up its efforts in this field.

Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, said:

The response to this competition was impressive, with 58 European cities applying. This demonstrates that there is real interest among European public administrations to boost innovation and modernise and improve services for citizens. At the end of the day there can only be one winner but we can all learn from each other by sharing our best ideas.

The iCapital Award was launched to encourage cities to stimulate innovation and create a network of cities which can share their best ideas for the future. Cities were judged on the basis of initiatives they have already taken, as well as their future ideas to enhance innovative capacity. Finalists are listed below along with their main achievements:

  • BARCELONA, Spain for introducing the use of new technologies to bring the city closer to citizens;
  • ESPOO, Finland for the creation of strategic partnerships uniting science, business and creativity;
  • GRENOBLE, France for investing in scientific and technological breakthroughs through synergies between research, education and industry;
  • GRONINGEN, Netherlands for the use of new concepts, tools and processes to develop a user-centred smart energy ecosystem;
  • MALAGA, Spain for a new urban regeneration model where people and creative industries cooperate and spur growth;
  • PARIS, France for opening up municipally-owned property to experimental innovative solutions, driven by all types of businesses.

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