The European data space for smart communities call for pilots is open!

The European Data Space for Smart Communities launched its first call for pilots in June 2024. The Data Space is an EU-wide action creating a cross-sectorial data space for governments on all levels and their providers to deliver the best possible services to their citizens by enabling interoperability of data. The ultimate goal is to make the best use of data to reach critical goals, including the Green Deal.

Aim of the Call for Pilots

The Call for Pilots aims to advance the development and implementation of data spaces. There will be three rounds of the call in 1) June-August 2024 2) September – November 2024 and 3) December 2024 - February 2025. The projects should build on and evolve the governance and technical blueprint of the data space for smart communities. The blueprint was established by the DS4SSCC preparatory action, which comes out of joint efforts of the Living-in.EU movement.

Scope and Pre-conditions

The pilot consortia must create new data services from the data sharing across at least two heterogeneous areas specified below, but can also include other European Green Deal domains:

  • Predictive traffic management / sustainable mobility planning.
  • Data-services related to weather, climate and extreme weather events.
  • Management of energy flows in a city/community specific context.
  • Zero pollution actions (e.g. air, water, soil, pollution or waste).
  • Any other domain falling under the New European Bauhaus initiative (urban design, building management, public services, nature-based solutions, amongst others).

Successful applications must meet specific pre-conditions, indicated below:

  • At least two local or regional public administrations from different EU member states and/or Digital Europe Programme Associated countries. All entities are subject to restrictions due to security reasons. An entity can only be awarded once as Lead Partner.
  • Applicants need to bear at least 50% of the project costs as direct co-financing. The maximum co-funding from the programme is 1 500 000 euros per pilot (max co-funding per entity 1 000 000 euros).
  • Proposals should include cross-sectorial (and -border, if feasible) data sharing, and applicants should be sufficiently digitalised - a data platform, digital twin or emerging data space should already be in place in the city/community. The technical solutions should comply with MIM1, MIM2 and MIM6 and be aligned with the Data Spaces Building Blocks & recommended standards and implementations.
  • The business case should be sufficiently elaborated, with a clear value proposition.
  • Proposals should be aligned with ethical principles, demonstrated in the Ethical and Data Protection Self-Assessment and legally compliant.

This approach ensures shared investment and commitment from both the EU and the applicants, reflecting partnership and joint responsibility. Co-financing must be monetary and specified in the pilot budget. All activities must comply with regulations, including state-aid rules and avoiding double funding.

Submissions and Timeline

The open Calls for Pilots are organised in three rounds. The deadline to submit a proposal for the first round is 31 August 2024 at 23:59h CEST.

More information and how to apply can be found on the dedicated Open call for Pilots page and in the Call for Pilots Manual. Watch the recording of the Info Session on the Call for Pilots here.

Call for expression of interest to become an expert evaluator

If you are not planning to apply, but you have relevant expertise and knowledge, consider applying as an expert evaluator to ensure that the call funds quality proposals with real impact. More information on the conditions to become expert evaluator.

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