Apply for European Capital of Innovation Award

Deadline: 18 November 2015
Open to: the candidate cities must be established in an EU Member State or in a country associated to Horizon 2020 and have a population above 100,000 inhabitants
Prize: first place EUR 950,000, second place EUR 100,000, third place EUR 50,000


After the success of the first edition of the European Capital of Innovation Award in 2014, the European Commission has launched a second, even more ambitious, edition to celebrate the European city which is building the best “innovation ecosystem”- connecting citizens, public organizations, academia, and business – with a view to helping the city scale up its efforts in this field.

It will aim to provide European level recognition to those cities that make the most to promote innovation within their communities and thereby improve the quality of their citizens’ lives. It will address the challenge of fostering innovation through actions at city level, by acknowledging innovative solutions to build up an innovation ecosystem and ideas to further expand and scale up these initiatives, thereby leveraging and inducing further systemic innovation in cities.


Contestants for the “European Capital of Innovation Award 2016′‘ shall comply with the following eligibility criteria to participate:

  1. The candidate cities must be established in an EU Member or in Associated Country and have a population above 100,000 inhabitants;
  2. The submission consists of a complete application;
  3. The achievements must relate to completed or on-going initiatives started after 1st January 2012.
  4. The achievements have not been previously awarded with a monetary prize by an EU institution.

Award criteria:

  1. Innovative – in terms of concepts, processes and tools;
  2. Inspiring – attracting talent, resources, funding, investment;
  3. Integrated – covering the entire innovation ecosystem and its links with Europe 2020;
  4. Interactive – facilitating the interactions within the innovation ecosystem, particularly ensuring citizens’ involvement and engagement;
  5. Impactful – outlining the city’s potential to realize the expected impacts of the prize and its current commitment towards future, sustainable plans based on the above mentioned achievements.


  • First prize of EUR 950,000;
  • Second prize of EUR 100,000;
  • Third prize EUR 50,000.

How to apply?

Before applying read the application guide. You can apply in 6 easy steps via web-based submission system. Deadline for applying is 18 November 2015.

For more information please check the official call or visit the official website.

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