NEWS SEARCH RESULTS ( 1 - 10 from 802 )

ICLEI and FAO collaborate on procurement to advance the food system transformation

27 February 2020

Public procurement is increasingly seen and recognised as a strategic tool for food system transformation and to ensure access to healthy food for all. ICLEI Europe collaborated closely with FAO at the World Urban Forum 10 to share the fruits of recent work done on cities and food. In joint sessions such as 'Urban-Rurual Linkages for Nutrition' themes such as nutrition and health linked to sustainable public food procurement were explored.

ICLEI has been working together with FAO on the topic of food in cities for many years. 

For example, ICLEI together with frontrunner cities such as Ghent and Copenhagen made a few strong statements of the importance of using sustainable food procurement strategically, feeding into an international consultation at FAO in Rome at the end of 2019. 

The collaboration extends into other examples such as ICLEI’s CITYFOOD Network and the recently launched FAO Framework for the Urban Food Agenda looking at the interlinkages between the national and local level. Following the launch of the FAO Framework ICLEI Europe was asked to share its expertise on sustainable food procurement such as sustainable school meals as a driver for healthy food and healthy environments. 

Learn more about sustainable food procurement here. 

Procurers’ time to shine: Awards open for applications

21 February 2020

It is time for public authorities invested in sustainable and fair procurement to shine – with two prestigious Awards open for applications.

The 2020 edition of the Procura+ Awards, an initiative of ICLEI in co-operation with the EU-funded Procure2Innovate project, is accepting applications from purchasing bodies that have put their procurement to good use. Public authorities can win in four categories: Innovation Procurement of the Year, Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT, Sustainable Procurement of the Year, and Procurement Initiative of the Year. The application period is open until 31 March 2020.

Participants in previous editions highlighted that taking part in the Procura+ Awards helped them to benchmark themselves, get recognition, and advocate for pushing for more sustainable and innovation criteria in their tenders. To apply to the Awards visit the Procura+ website.

EU cities committed to fair and ethical trade, the EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award, an initiative of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Trade, is another way to gain recognition. The Award celebrates EU cities who champion more sustainable trade, consumption and production, thus creating opportunities for producers elsewhere. To apply, visit the website.

Circular Procurement Congress - a step towards a circular Europe

13 February 2020

On 27-29 May 2020 procurement experts, suppliers, researchers and key opinion leaders from all over Europe will meet in Warsaw to share their experiences and best practices of using procurement as an effective tool for the transition towards the circular economy. The purpose of the Congress is to raise awareness of circular concepts, procurement, in particular, highlight good practices, share experiences and pave the road ahead for circular procurement to enter the mainstream.

The Congress is a three-day event, full of intensive networking and knowledge sharing activities such as workshops, seminars, keynote speeches, world café sessions and study visits. Purchasers within governmental entities and companies will discover the advantages of circular procurement and explore tools that can facilitate and optimize its implementation. The societal challenge of resource efficiency will be discussed by considering innovative solutions from a multidimensional perspective. This concerns products, processes and new business models as well as exploiting the synergies between public authorities, research institutions, SMEs and non-profit organisations active in this field.

The Congress is organized under the Circular Public Procurement project supported by the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme.

Registration is possible here.


Market engagement webinar: find SMEs and start-ups for innovative solutions

6 February 2020

Do you have an upcoming procurement and want to engage new suppliers? Meet potential suppliers presenting their solutions to meet your needs during a market engagement webinar, organised by ICLEI. By opening up for new innovative ideas, SMEs and start-ups might provide you with solutions that cover the demands in a way that you did not even knew was possible. Get in contact with us now if you are interested in this opportunity.

This webinar is part of the European Innovation Council (EIC) in which the European Commission wants to give innovative companies better opportunities to become world-leading enterprises. The EIC can connect public buyers who have innovation needs with the community of more than 5000 top innovative SMEs and start-ups. All suppliers go through a demanding selection procedure and received EIC funding.

ICLEI supports partnership building between the EIC Community members and public procurers and has resources to organize a market engagement event (webinar) where EIC companies present their products corresponding to these needs. For more information contact us:


SMEs and startups called to submit their ideas for Raw Materials and Circular Societies Prize

29 January 2020

The World Bank estimates the amount of municipal solid waste will increase from 1.3 to 2.2 billion tons per year by 2025, with most of this increase coming from cities in developing nations. According to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, in the consumer goods sector alone about 80 percent of the USD 3.2 trillion value is irrecoverably lost annually. The linear take-make-waste industrial model is no longer viable in the face of rapid population growth, resource constraints, climate change, urbanization, water insecurity and other trends.

New business models that foster repairing, reuse and sharing, are an essential part of the Circular Economy. To support innovative ideas that tackle the challenge of resource and economic transition specifically in European cities EIT Raw Materials calls on SMEs, start-ups and organisations to submit their business model ideas.

The best ideas are awarded with a prize of €30,000 and support for implementing the new business model. Deadline for submissions is May 31, 2020. The prize is awarded in collaboration with ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability.

For more information on how to apply go to the EIT Raw Material’s website.

Join us at the Marketplace of the European Innovation Partnership on Smart Cities and Communities

24 January 2020

Is your city looking to make investments in the area of mobility, ICT or energy? Is your city thinking of redeveloping certain areas? Are you looking for providers with smart city products or services?

The European Innovation Partnership on Smart Cities and Communities (EIP-SCC) is hosting a matchmaking event for policy makers, and city and regional representatives looking to connect with peers and start discussions with business representatives from the smart city community.

The event, taking place in Brussels (Belgium) on 20 February – back-to-back with the Covenant of Mayors Investment Forum – brings together city and regional representatives, businesses, and investors and focuses on exploring and shaping opportunities for persons involved in smart cities projects.

Among others, Mark Hidson, Global Director of ICLEI's sustainable procurement centre, will host a dsicussion on procurement as driver and implementer of Smart Cities.

This is the first in a series of matchmaking activities. It offers a unique knowledge-sharing opportunity for those in charge of policy-making and those representing cities and regions, and gives cities the opportunity to offer advice to peers, learn from best practices, present projects, and find investors and Smart City Solutions.

The EIP-SCC offers a forum for discussion, assists in the development of innovative urban ideas, and brings together urban innovators, developers, investors, and private equity.

ICLEI Europe will be represented at the event by Director for Sustainable Procurement, Mark Hidson, who will host a session on how public procurement can drive the implementation of Smart Cities.

The event is promoted by the European Commission's EIP-SCC Marketplace initiative, of which ICLEI Europe is an active partner.

Six European Cities will look for Artificial Intelligence solutions to move towards carbon neutrality

15 January 2020

Procura+ Participants Helsinki (Finland), Copenhagen (Denmark), Stavanger (Norway) as well as Paris Region (France), Amsterdam (Netherlands), and Tallinn (Estonia) have joined forces in AI4Cities, a new EU-funded project that will challenge companies to develop artificial intelligence (AI) solutions on the fields of energy and mobility. These solutions are aimed at reducing the cities’ greenhouse gas emissions and support them in meeting their climate change commitments.

Through AI4Cities (January 2020 to December 2022), these cities and regions, guided by ICLEI's procurement team, will go through a Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) process, an innovation procurement tool that enables the public sector to steer the development of new solutions directly towards its needs. First, the buying authorities will define the needs and requirements of those solutions on the energy and the mobility fields they would like to see developed in order to move towards carbon neutrality. Then, they will challenge startups, SMEs, bigger companies and other relevant stakeholders to design innovative solutions applying the use of AI and related enabling technologies, such as 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing and big data applications.

AI4Cities is divided into five main phases. During the preparation phase (Phase 0), the procuring cities will organise a series of activities – roundtables, workshops, and matchmaking events, amongst others – aimed at ensuring the open market consultation is an ambitious co-creation exercise. The PCP process will consist of a solution design phase (Phase 1), a prototype phase (Phase 2) and a prototype testing phase (Phase 3). AI4Cities will reach the supply side to select and fund a minimum of 40 contractors (20 for the energy challenge and 20 for the mobility challenge) who, during Phase 1, will present their reports with a concept design, results of their feasibility studies and conclusions. Then, a minimum of 20 contractors (ten for each of the two challenges) will be invited to develop their prototypes in Phase 2. Finally, a minimum of six contractors (three and three) will make it into Phase 3 where a series of larger scale pilots will be undertaken. To maximise the potential impact of the project, a group of cities will be recruited to follow the PCP process and support the uptake of the outcomes. The final stage (Phase 4) will focus on the implementation of the tested solutions.

The latest from International Green Purchasing Network

8 January 2020

The International Green Purchasing Network (IGPN), an organization committed to the promotion of green procurement around the globe, released its latest newsletter, providing an overview of key activities from 2019.

A key event that took place, was the Annual Meeting in Suzhou, China. During the meeting Mr. Chen Yanping was elected as the new IGPN Chairman. Mark Hidson, Global Director, ICLEI's Sustainable Procurement Centre, continues in the role of the IGPN vice chair. Representatives of Green Procurement Networks from different countries and regions shared their progress and achievements in the field of green procurement.

The Annual Meeting made clear that IGPN will tailor exchanges and communication on practices, tools and methods between developed and developing countries in global green procurement, promote the dissemination of green procurement, accelerate the solution of global environmental issues, and promote the realization of sustainable consumption and production goals.

In addition, the newsletter gives insight in procurement activities of IGPN members such as the launch of “RE Action – Declaring 100% Renewable. This campaign was jointly launched by the Green Purchasing Network (GPN), ICLEI Japan, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), and Japan Climate Leaders’ Partnership (JCLP) in October 2019. This initiative targets and supports local governments, educational and medical institutions, and small to medium-sized enterprises to declare conversion to 100% renewable energy.

Access the full newsletter here.

Learn more about IGPN here.

Flemish buyers go for fair and circular ICT!

17 December 2019

On 9 December, the ‘Conference on Fair & Circular ICT’ was hosted by the Procura+ Participant City of Ghent, organised by Fair ICT Flanders in collaboration with the project Make ICT Fair - in which ICLEI contributes with support to pilot procurements of fair ICT.
It was the first conference in Flanders to be entirely dedicated to the theme: “How can you, as an ICT buyer, do your bit towards a more sustainable world?” With 110 participants, the conference shows that the theme is very much alive among buyers, sustainability employees and ICT professionals from public institutions and private companies.

The power of responsible purchasing

The production of laptops, smartphones, and servers is accompanied by many human rights violations and has an enormous ecological impact. With this conference, Fair ICT Flanders want to provide concrete tools for large buyers of ICT hardware from the public and private sectors in Flanders. Through their purchasing policy, they can put pressure on the ICT companies and contribute to improving the local working and living conditions within the ICT supply chain.

Alain Linard, Head of Operations at Digipolis Gent indicated: “We want to use people’s tax money in a responsible way. We do not want to contribute to human rights violations through our purchases and thus assume our responsibility.”

Front-runners from the EU and Flanders presented their good examples and the participants were able to enter into a dialogue with the invited experts. Ideas and possibilities to work on fair and/or circular ICT were discussed at discussion tables. The participants went home with a lot of inspiration and new ideas.

Learn more about Fair ICT Flanders.
Learn more about ICLEI’s work in Make ICT Fair.


Toolkit on human rights for policy makers and public buyers released

13 December 2019

The Danish Institute for Human Rights has published a new Toolkit “Driving change through public procurement: A toolkit on human rights for policy makers and public buyers (road-testing version)”, exploring how public procurement policy makers, buyers & contract managers can implement requirements to support human rights along the supply chain.

In recent years, public procurement has increasingly been recognised as a means for states to fulfil their human rights obligations and as a means of realising sustainable development. Including requirements within public procurement that suppliers respect human rights can help prevent human rights abuses including modern slavery, child labour, human trafficking, and excessive working hours from occurring within state value chains and promote the rights of persons with disabilities, women and children, and economically disadvantaged minorities, for example.

The toolkit is designed to be a practical tool with a range good practice examples. It is published in a road-testing version and the publishers would like to hear whether the toolkit can be improved and whether there are more good practice examples to be highlighted.

Download the full toolkit here.

If you want to engage in the discussion and learn more about how to implement social standards in public procurement, you can follow the MakeICTFair project, that adresses fair labour conditions along ICT cupply chains, and join the Procura+ Interest Group on Socially Responsible Public Procurement of ICT.