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Circular PP recommends circular procurement actions to national policy makers

20 May 2020

A set of recommendations directed at national policy makers has been published by the Circular PP project. Public procurement can be a powerful tool for creating demand for circular products and services. This does not happen automatically however, and needs strong policy signals. As such, Circular PP recommends the following:

1.     National Circular Economy (CE) strategies should have a clear link to the concept of circular public procurement, including a definition and objectives.

2.     Countries should examine the opportunities to make sustainable and circular public procurement more binding and develop appropriate indicators.

3.     Local pilots of procurement of circular products and solutions should be encouraged.

4.     Specific CPP criteria should be clearly included in the EU GPP criteria.

5.     Market dialogue and networking between procurers and different actors should be increased in order to develop new circular solutions and innovations on the market.

These recommendations are the result of a large analysis conducted by the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) to assess the state of circular public procurement policy and practice across eight Baltic Sea countries (Denmark, Sweden, Russia, Latvia, Poland, and Finland) as well as comparisons to the Netherlands and UK. The full analysis can be found here.

Circular PP is a 3-year project supported by the Interreg Baltic Sea Region programme. These recommendations, along with other outcomes from the Circular PP project will be presented at the Baltic Circular Procurement Congress (1-3rd September 2020). Register here to attend.

Join the webinar: delivery models, funding & procurement for smart cities

13 May 2020

City governments have a key role in planning, delivering, and ensuring the uptake of smart technologies. The key to success is to define this role adequately. Join us for a webinar on 18 June 2020 discussing how to choose the delivery model(s) for your smart city ambitions. Sign up here

If we assume that the responsibility of visioning, financing, procuring and managing smart city projects lies solely on the shoulders of cities, then implementing smart city ambitions may seem like a daunting task. In a time of global uncertainty, public officers indeed rarely have the resources and expertise to bear the sole burden of delivery. The good news is that such a delivery model is rarely the only option available.

A successful smart city project will equally benefit technology solutions providers, investors, local businesses and community stakeholders. Provided the vested interests of those parties can align (so that supply matches demand at the correct price), then those actors all have an incentive to drive projects forward.

Because of a lack of market dialogue in the smart city solution markets, those private and public interests rarely align spontaneously. The role of cities is therefore to understand the reasons behind market failure and use the wide array of regulatory, financing and procurement tools at their disposal to address it and encourage market activity.

The current COVID-19 crisis illustrates why cities should avoid relying on a single delivery model to support all of their smart city ambitions. In times of great market disruption/uncertainty it is helpful to have a mix of funding, procurement and delivery strategies to:

  • spread the risk and costs of disruption between different actors, and
  • avoid dependency on single providers/funders who might reconsider their commitment during disruptive periods.

This webinar will go through four different, but complementary, roles that cities can play to support the adoption of smart city solutions within their boundaries, highlighting their associated funding models and how they each address various market failures. These models include:

  1. Cities as regulators
  2. Cities as facilitators
  3. Cities as buyers (direct procurers)
  4. Cities as partners (public-private partnerships)
  5. The delivery models described in the webinar should be seen as complementary – they all have their place as part of a sustainable smart city delivery strategy, both now and in the future.

The webinar will be moderated by Philipp Tepper from ICLEI Europe and Georg Houben of the European Commission. The discussion will be supported by real life examples from different panelists, who will share their experiences of applying each delivery model.

AI suppliers, climate change experts and cities can register to the AI4Cities Open Market Consultation webinar

11 May 2020

The AI4Cities project has opened registration to its first global Open Market Consultation webinar, taking place next May 28. In this webinar, the AI4Cities consortium will introduce the project and its ambitions, and will open the dialogue with potential suppliers of artificial intelligence solutions to accelerate carbon neutrality.

AI4Cities is a three-year EU-funded project bringing together leading European cities looking for innovative solutions applying the use of AI and related enabling technologies, such as big data applications, 5G, edge computing and IoT, to reduce CO2 emissions in the fields of mobility and energy. Helsinki  (Finland), Amsterdam (the Netherlands), Copenhagen (Denmark), Paris Region (France), Stavanger (Norway) and Tallinn (Estonia) are the six European cities and regions that are taking part in this pre-commercial procurement (PCP) process, an innovation procurement tool that enables the public sector to steer the development of new solutions (not-market-ready) directly towards its needs.

The total funding amount to be divided among the selected suppliers throughout the whole PCP process is 4.6 million euros.

Next May 28, AI suppliers (startups, entrepreneurs, companies...), as well as climate change experts and cities are invited to join the first global Open Market Consultation webinar, so that demand and supply sides start their dialogue.

Agenda of the event

10.00    Introduction to the AI4Cities project. Kaisa Sibelius, Coordinator AI4Cities, Forum Virium Helsinki
10.15    Mobility– City of Stavanger, Nils Henrik Haaland.
10.25    Energy – City of Amsterdam, Anja Reimann and Mimi Eelman.
10.40    Open AI for agile cities. Timo Ruohomäki, Programme Director, Forum Virium Helsinki
10.55    What is a Pre-Commercial Procurement process? Hugo Gonçalves, PCP Specialist, Forum Virium Helsinki
11.10    Questions and answers
11.30    End

To register, visit here

Health-care procurers meet EIC companies to discuss innovative medical solutions

5 May 2020

In response to the current public health crisis, EIC Accelerator and ICLEI Europe have organized an online market engagement event. On April 30, public and private procurers from the health sector discussed their needs in the current crisis with 23 selected EIC companies who pitched their solutions for providing medical supply, such as personal protective garments, medication, test kits, respiratory machinery as well as innovative technologies such as tele-medicine, remote solutions, artificial intelligence for date analysis and prediction. 

The 50 health procurers at the pitching event expressed a need for better personal protection equipment, reliable test kits, new telehealth devices, and more efficient ways of managing their supply chain. The event was considered a great success by both the procurers attending, and the companies that presented their solutions.

A representative from the University Hospital Halle in Germany shared concerns about the supply chain. “On the demand side, there is no general database for all hospitals. We don’t have a national health service. Every hospital is working on its own when it comes to databases,” he said. “We need something that makes it easy to take [an] Excel [spreadsheet] and to share it.”

A number of EIC-backed ideas looked to meet these requirements. Among them was EyeControl, a wearable device that uses eye tracking tech to enable communication between medical staff and ventilated patients, including those diagnosed with COVID-19.
Thanks to the high demand from procurers from across Europe as well as beyond, including Belgium, Bulgaria, Colombia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, Luxemburg, Slovakia, Spain and Romania, the UK, and Colombia, a follow up event will be organised in June.

Prior to the event, ICLEI collected and analysed the procurers’ needs and selected relevant companies from the pool of over 5,000 EIC companies based on the needs expressed by procurers. To make the start-ups and SMEs more familiar with public procurement, ICLEI also developed and conducted a procurement training.

The European Innovation Council (EIC) can connect public buyers with 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 Europe supports partnership building between the EIC Community members and public procurers interested in working with EIC SME’s; and manages the on-boarding of private and public procurers interested in working with innovators on the EIC Community Platform and motivate their active participation in the EIC Community.

UNLOCKING THE POTENTIAL FOR SUSTAINABLE URBAN DEVELOPMENT AND LOCAL ECONOMIC GROWTH

24 April 2020

The OECD is launching a new project to support selected cities/regions in using public procurement as a strategic tool to achieve their policy objectives and priorities. The project will be implemented with the support of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability. It is open to ICLEI members, Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement and Procura+ Participants as well as other cities ICLEI works with on this topic. The project comes at a time when public procurement is playing an increasingly critical role in delivering the goods and services that are necessary to fight the Covid-19 pandemic and prepare for post-crisis recovery.

How cities spend taxpayers’ money, how they deliver services and how they make strategic investment decisions makes procurement an increasingly important tool to go beyond the economic aspects of “value for money”.


In addition to providing support to selected cities and regions, the project offers the opportunity to produce comparative data and statistics on public procurement in cities and regions, facilitate peer-to-peer learning, and assess the procurement performance at the local level.

For more information on how your city/region can join the project, please contact Mark Hidson, Global Director, ICLEI’s Sustainable Procurement Centre (procurement@iclei.org) and Soo-Jin Kim, Head of Urban Policies and Reviews Unit, OECD (Soo-Jin.KIM@oecd.org).

 

ICLEI launches new criteria guidance - leverage procurement to make ICT fair

21 April 2020

ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability Europe and Electronics Watch published “How to procure fair ICT hardware - Criteria set for socially responsible public procurement” as part of their work in the Europe-Aid funded project ‘Make ICT Fair’. 

Cities, local governments, universities, hospitals and other public bodies in the European Union procure over €50 billion worth of electronic devices annually. These purchases include desktop or laptop computers, servers, screens, workstations, printers or smartphones.

Human and environmental rights violations take place daily in the  ICT supply chain. Long working hours, low wages, suicides, poisonings, child labour, armed conflicts, water depletion and environmental disaster are just some of the labour and human rights violations reported in the electronics industry from mining to manufacturing.

Public authorities have the power to use procurement to create better working conditions and protect the rights of workers and communities by purchasing products that have been procured in a socially responsible manner.


The criteria document aims to support experienced procurers in leveraging public purchases of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) hardware to positively impact working conditions across the electronics supply-chain. The criteria set covers guidance on Subject Matter, Selection and Award Criteria, Technical Specifications as well as Contract Clauses. The criteria set is ambitious as it goes beyond smelter level but addresses issues at mining stage also. 


This guidance has been developed together with the Procura+ Interest Group on Socially Responsible Public Procurement of ICT hardware, coordinated by ICLEI Europe. The Interest Group consisted of procurers and experts on social aspects from the Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges (APUC) Scotland, Barcelona City Council, Greater London Authority, Municipality of Haarlem, Region Stockholm, Municipality of Stavanger, Municipality of Malmø, the City of Aalborg and Rijkswaterstaat. 


‘The power of public procurement can create a positive impact across global supply chains. We see every upcoming procurement as an opportunity to act on the responsibility we have as a public authority to create public value. From our perspective this ambition includes doing our best to assure fair working conditions in the supply-chain of electronic products that Barcelona City Council needs. The new criteria will enable us and other procurers to further advance our socially responsible public procurement practice.’ - ​Carla Canal Rosich, Directorate of Global Justice and International Cooperation, Barcelona City Council


Region Stockholm has identified ICT as a priority area to be addressed in our procurement, due to the high risk of human rights, labour rights, and child labour violations within the supply chain. The new set of criteria helps pave the way towards fair ICT products. This requires not only criteria per se, but regular dialogue between buyer, reseller and suppliers including thorough contract management.’ - ​Kathleen McCaughey, ​Manager Sustainable Supply Chains, Region Stockholm


Download the full document here. Contact: procurement@iclei.org 


Disclaimer: 

The overall objective of the Make ICT Fair project is to increase EU citizen knowledge of EU development cooperation within the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), raise awareness & understanding of EU citizens/decision makers about the interdependencies between the Global South and Europe and mobilise EU citizens/decision makers & ICT purchasers/procurers working in the EU Public Sector to improve workers'/communities' rights and conditions in the ICT industry.

The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of the Make ICT Fair Project and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union. The European Commission is also not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained herein. The project has received funding from the European Union’s EuropeAid programme under grant agreement CSO-LA12017/388-226. 

 

Learn from and exchange with the EU-funded project AI4Cities

16 April 2020

Are you a public authority ambitious about procurement and curious about artificial intelligence towards carbon neutrality?

Helsinki, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Paris Region, Stavanger and Tallinn - are pursuing a pre-commercial procurement and are looking for cities that are curious to learn and exchange with throughout the process.

The project is divided into five phases:

1. Preparatory phase: refine challenge, enlist companies and peer cities

2. Funding Suppliers for Solutions design

3. Funding Suppliers for Prototypes development

4. Funding Suppliers for pilot testing in EU Cities

5. Results promotion and scaling-up

 

What does it mean to be a Preferred Partner?

- To engage closely with the PCP Process, with a view to ultimately expanding the market uptake of the developed solutions through your own Public Procurement of Innovative solutions (PPI).

- To be kept informed about all aspects of the PCP and afforded access to all information concerning the PCP results.

- To contribute wherever possible to validate the PCP goal by providing background information regarding the specific needs of the cities.

- To collaborate with the consortium’s public procurers and to meaningfully support the project’s objectives.

- To join relevant online and face-to-face meetings.

How to get involved? Visit www.ai4cities.eu or get in touch with Josefine Hintz, Manager Preferred Partners Group –  josefine.hintz@iclei.org

Public procurement to support crisis response

15 April 2020

Local governments play a critical role in ensuring the physical, emotional and societal health of their residents during the current Covid-19 pandemic. Local leaders and communities have been key to introducing early restrictive measures, as well as approaches to mitigate the impact of the restrictions for people and to support those at the highest risk. Public procurement has to support the emergency response and the adjustment to this new and extraordinary situation.  

To support procurers who are facing this challenge, later this month, ICLEI alongside the EIC Accelerator is organising an online market engagement e-pitching event to connect public and private procurers from the health sector with EIC companies providing medical supply (e.g. personal protective garments, medication, test kits, respiratory machinery, etc.) and innovative technologies (e.g. tele-medicine, remote solutions, artificial intelligence for data analysis and prediction, etc.).

The online event, which will bring together European procurers and up to 40 EIC companies, will provide procurers with the opportunity to outline their needs and the challenges and problems they face in relation to COVID-19. The EIC companies in attendance will then be able to pitch solutions to these challenges.

As part of the EU-funded LEA project, ICLEI is also offering a new webinar series, from April-June, which will explore the procurement of resilient education technology during the COVD-19 pandemic. With schools and universities closing and classes moving online, this five-part webinar series will hear from both teachers and innovation procurement professionals and explore how procurement can learn from this current crisis and procure effective learn-tech now and in the future. 

Learn more about the e-pitching event here.

Learn more about the webinar series here

 

 

 

Win €10,000 to fund your next innovative and sustainable procurement project

8 April 2020

Innovative and sustainable procurement actions which showcase the use of public procurement as an instrument to accelerate the market introduction of innovative and sustainable technologies, are invited to apply for the 2020 Transformative Action Award.

The winner of which will receive a prize of €10,000 to help initiate further transformative actions in their city or region.

The winner will also receive free entry to the 9th European Conference on Sustainable Cities & Towns, Mannheim (Germany), 30 September – 2 October 2020, where the 2020 Transformative Action Award ceremony will take place.

The award, co-organised by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, the Basque Country, and the City of Aalborg (Denmark) and supported by the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) and the European Investment Bank (EIB), rewards ongoing or concluded Transformative Actions that use the 15 pathways outlined in the Basque Declaration to bring about the socio-cultural, socio-economic, and technological transformation of societies.

Current or concluded actions in the field of procurement can apply for the award by the closing date of 31 July 2020. For more information and to apply for the award, visit the Sustainable Cities Platform.

 

 

Webinar on the new EU GPP criteria for food, catering & vending machines

2 April 2020

On behalf of the EU GPP helpdesk ICLEI Europe is organising a webinar to introduce the new EU GPP criteria for food, catering services and vending machines, on April 23 from 14:30 - 16:00.

Register here.

Programme

  • Welcome and Introduction to the EU GPP Criteria for Food, Enrico Degiorgis, DG Environment, European Commission
  • The sustainable school meal procurement initiative of Torres Vedras, Paula Rodrigues, City of Torres Vedras
  • Low-carbon and sustainable food procurement in Helsinki, Satu Turula and Reetta Huomo, City of Helsinki

Background

Green Public Procurement (GPP) is an important tool to achieve environmental policy goals relating to climate change, resource use and sustainable consumption and production – especially given the importance of public sector spendingon goods and services in Europe.

This is the first of two Webinars that will be held in 2020, as part of the European Commission’s Helpdesk service on GPP. The webinar will focus on the updated voluntary EU green public procurement (GPP) criteriafor food, catering services and vending machines, which have been designed to help public authorities reduce the key environmental impacts associated with the growing, preparing, and selling food.

The GPP Helpdesk Webinars provide a forum to inform stakeholders working in the field of public sector procurement about important new developments in the resources available and legislative context for GPP, and provide an opportunity for questions and discussion. For more information, visit the European Commission’s GPP website.