More European cities and regions to join forces in search for climate change solutions

Following the signing of the Paris Agreement, Climate-KIC will be expanding its low-carbon programmes to additional cities and regions across Europe.

Climate-KIC will be expanding its innovation model to reach more areas with the launch of calls for organisations from additional regions to participate it its Smart Sustainable Districts (SSD) and Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS) programmes. Climate-KIC already runs low-carbon projects in most EU member states and third countries like Norway and Switzerland.

Climate-KIC’s announcement comes as innovators from around Europe meet in Budapest, Hungary, for the European Institute of Innovation & Technology’s (EIT) annual INNOVEIT innovation summit on 25 and 26 April, which is focused on how Europeans can join forces for innovation to ensure the continent remains competitive globally.

“Around the world, businesses and public organisations are involved in a race against the clock to find solutions to climate change, and to reap the economic benefits that some of the best solutions provide,” said Ian Short, CEO, Climate-KIC, “We’re working to make sure Europe is at the forefront of these developments, which often happen most effectively at regional and city levels. That’s where many of the practical solutions to climate change are being implemented.”

Smart Sustainable Districts (SSD)

Climate-KIC’s Smart Sustainable Districts (SSD) programme works closely with highly ambitious districts across Europe to identify innovative solutions to their sustainability and climate change challenges. With wider integration opportunities than at individual building scale and more autonomy than at city level, districts can have significant near-term impact.  The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London is one of those districts, and was one of the first to start working with Climate-KIC to trial innovative sustainability solutions.

Climate-KIC is looking for city districts fitting the following criteria:

  • contain a mix of residential and commercial buildings
  • has a planned programme of new build or refurbishment projects
  • cohesive governance structure or ownership representation

Interested city districts should register their interest at www.climate-kic.org/ssd.

Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS)

Climate-KIC is also active at a regional level, and has deployed the EIT’s Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS) to boost the climate innovation engagement by European regions not formally within Climate-KIC’s geographic network. In 2015, Climate-KIC piloted activities in Estonia, Portugal, Romania and Slovenia.

In the Baltics, the Estonian Development Fund and Startup Estonia took part in the Regional Innovation Scheme, allowing Estonians to participate in Climate-KIC programmes such as its ClimateLaunchpad cleantech idea competition and its Pioneers into Practice professional exchange programme.

Annika Lentso, CEO of the Estonian Development Fund: “Climate-KIC has helped to bring together Estonian cleantech ecosystem and developed a dialogue about creating value to the society by fostering innovative green ventures. KIC partnership has increased the visibility of our inspiring green entrepreneurs, and we are excited to host this year’s ClimateLaunchpad European Finals in Tallinn.”

Organisations that would like to represent their region can apply at www.climate-kic.org/ris by 10 June 2016.

 
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