The Smart Cities Marketplace and Scalable Cities were spearheading the organisation and management with 7 commission DGs/Agencies and 28 projects and initiatives funded under the EC to bring forth a joint presence of projects named “European Smart Cities and Communities”. In booth sessions and agora sessions over 70 speakers presented cutting-edge innovative solutions with the aim to replicate them across cities in Europe on the path to climate neutrality.
The Smart City Expo World Congress 2022 this year counted 20,000+ in-person attendees, and 21,000 online attendees, participation of more than 134 countries, more than 400 speakers, 853 exhibitors.
Main Take Aways
- What we have learned is that a new way of thinking is necessary. It is no longer an option to work in silos. The need for all stakeholders of the city landscape to be involved.
- There is a need to bring innovation to market and to move from single innovation to the whole city (removing barriers, the legal framework is not ready for these innovations). State of art in the smart city context means the cooperation between public sectors with innovators.
- The need to keep things simple and straightforward. If we want to finance climate neutrality in Europe, we need to make it happen in small and midsize cities.
- The EC funded Smart Cities and Communities presence successfully made the case for the European approach to Smart Cities with lots of interesting insights and stories, underlining the role of cities as drivers of the just, green and digital transition in support of the EU Green Deal.
- There’s a need for coherence, consistency and collaboration across the various initiatives and services under the umbrella of the European Commission, letting city administrators navigate the opportunities in the most effective way, embracing practicality, pragmatism and collaboration on all levels as lead principles, and long-term political support as one of the pivotal prerequisites.
- It has been confirmed that cities need to be at the very center of the climate neutrality movement and realisation of the EU Green Deal.
- “Acting now!” supersedes the principle of innovation: cutting edge is not what’s needed, but effective support to act now with the proven solutions and approaches available, with a focus on the neediest municipalities, the small and mid-sized ones.
- Many exhibitors of the SCEWC highlighted the relevance of their solutions under the actual energy crises considering their impact in terms of energy reduction.
- The initiatives present also highlighted, during the different sessions, the relevance of urgent measures and long-term strategies to reduce fossil fuel consumption.
The European Smart Cities and Communities Stand
The focus point of this year’s participation in the Smart City Expo World Congress was a joint booth that hosted 13 booth sessions organised by attending projects throughout the duration of the event.
The Agora Sessions
Projects and initiatives also took part in 4 fair sessions, called the agora sessions that included a larger and more diverse audience. The agora programme presented included cross-cutting topics such as the state-of-the-art solutions deployed by European cities, digitalisation enabling liveability and citizen engagement, innovative financial schemes and funding for sustainable energy and climate actions, as well as bottlenecks and barriers for cities on their path towards a just transition to climate neutrality.
The Smart Cities Marketplace Matchmaking
On-site, the Matchmaking team had 20 explore and shape meetings mainly focusing on topics related to engagement of cities, city consortia, and industrial clusters in the incoming matchmaking activities and processes, expansion of the Investors Network, identification of synergies and complementarities with other relevant EU initiatives.
City Exchange Session organised by the Smart Cities Marketplace
4 cities attended the city exchange session with the aim to have an open exchange on the challenges, opportunities and needs faced by EU cities when upscaling smart city solutions. The dialogue also covered how the Smart Cities Marketplace can support the advancement of smart city and sustainability journeys, both through existing tools as well as future services.
Mobility Innovations Showroom
EIT Urban Mobility the Mobility Innovations Showroom, where start-ups, city officers, and public transport authorities enrolled in an interactive session that aimed to generate questions and answers to the current challenges and future forecasts on sustainable urban logistics and the electrification of public space. Representatives of City of Munich, Metropolitan Transports of Barcelona, Urban Radar, Bia Power and Elonroad spoke.
Delegations that visited the joint European Smart Cities and Communities Stand and where the Smart Cities Marketplace was presented:
- German Ambassador of Spain
- Intelligent Cities Challenge (ICC) delegation - European cities Mayors and public sector representatives
- European Commission - Representation Office in Barcelona delegation
- Singapore - Public sector representatives’ delegation
- Électricité de France (EDF) delegation
In addition to DG ENER, DG MOVE and DG CNECT the following partners contributed:
- DG COMM – BELC
- Covenant of Mayors
- CRAFT project
- EERA Smart Cities
- EU City Facility
- Intelligent Cities Challenge
- MAtchUP Project
- Scalable Cities Secretariat
- SCC project ATELIER
- SCC project CITYXCHANGE
- SCC project ended MYSMARTLIFE
- SCC project ended RUGGEDISED
- SCC project IRIS
- SCC project MAKING CITY
- SCC project POCITYF
- SCC project RESPONSE
- SCC project SPARCS
- SCC project STARDUST
- Smart Cities Marketplace