THE PROJECT

What is SME4SMARTCITIES?

As cities continue to grow, so is the number of challenges they are facing. Environmental, economic or social emerging issues call for new and unproven urban solutions. The increasing need for urban innovation will result in the development of a significant number of Smart City initiatives, creating new business opportunities for Mediterranean SMEs. If we want our cities to be efficiently managed and more liveable for communities, public authorities and SMEs have to work together to come up with the best technological solutions.

SME4SMARTCITIES is an EU funded project under the ENI CBC Med Programme that intends to make this collaboration possible by reinforcing the capacities of the main actors involved around the Mediterranean basin. 

 

Goals

More specifically, the main objectives of the SME4SMARTCITIES project are:

– To support the Mediterranean technological and innovative SMEs in the development of new products and services that answer in a more efficient, smart and sustainable way to the urban challenges faced by cities.

– To improve Mediterranean SMEs’ competitiveness, their internationalization opportunities and their capability to create new knowledge resulting from cross-border cooperative processes.

– To help cities be the front-runners of innovation, in particular through the use of Public Procurement of Innovative solutions.

Project Call for Sub-grants

Beside the tools and resources publicly available within the SME4SMARTCITIES web platform (as a result of the activities conducted in the project), the partnership will launch a call for proposals for sub-grants aiming to support SMEs in developing innovative and technological solutions to major urban challenges faced by Mediterranean cities participating in the project.

The application to this call for sub-grants will consist of a two-step process; a first (or concept note) step and a second (or full application) step. Up to 60 applicants will be pre-selected in the first step of the process while it is expected that a minimum of 7 sub-grants will be finally awarded in the second step of the call across the project territories.

Potential benefits for selected SMEs

1st Step – Concept note application

To support the design and development of innovative and technological urban solutions and develop skills for applying to public procurement opportunities in the Mediterranean market, those SMEs selected in the 1st step of the process will participate in the following activities supported by SME4SMARTCITIES:

– A dedicated training programme designed to support SMEs in the development of new Smart City products and services, improve their competitiveness & internationalization capacities, and enhance their skills to reach public procurement opportunities.

– Co-creation and co-innovation activities pursuing the promotion and support of collaborative work between SMEs & cities, as well as cross-border cooperation between SMEs of the participating territories (matching actions, entrepreneurial missions…).

2nd Step – Full application 

Those applicants successful in the initial concept note step, will be invited for the 2nd full application step to submit proposals of innovative and technological solutions to the Mediterranean urban challenges identified by the project. Final selected applicants following this 2nd / full application step will become sub-grantees and will be expected to develop and test the proposed Smart City solutions. The overall indicative amount made available under this call for sub-grants is EUR 300.000¹

 

How to apply?

Applications from interested SMEs must be done through the link below. Application forms and full Guidelines for sub-grant applicants, containing eligibility and selection criteria, as well as detailed information on the application, evaluation and selection process, can be also downloaded through the link.

Applicants must apply in English.

Who can apply?

In order to be eligible, the applicants must:

Size of the company
Be a legally constitued SME: It must employ fewer than 250 persons and has an annual turnover not exceeding EUR 50 million, and/or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding EUR 43 million.

Territories
Be stablished in one of the eligible countries and territories of the SME4SMARTCITIES project.²

Solutions to be developed
Be able to develop/co-develop Smart City solutions to the main urban challenges faced by the Mediterranean cities participating in the project, not acting as an intermediary. Specific urban challenges identified for which the applicants will be expected to provide innovative and technological solutions are indicated in the Guidelines for sub-grant applicants.

1. The contracting authority reserves the right not to award all available funds.

2. See the full list of participating countries and territories on the SME4SMARTCITIES call application platform.