Project budget3 165 503 €
ERDF amount1 899 302 €
The market for public sector open data in Europe is €22,1B (EC 2015). Regional Smart Specialisation Strategies (RIS3) encourage smart innovation. Eg the private sector has data-based technologies available that can reduce traffic by directing cars to available parking. 2Seas cities are looking for solutions like these for their congested centres. However, the 2Seas innovation sector faces shared public sector challenges in unlocking this value for businesses, triggering region-wide brain drain.
The market failure is mainly within 2Seas cities in opening up datasets and using innovative procurement. SCIFI partners (4 cities, 2 international open data experts, and 2 business networks) identify the need for transnational framework conditions that 1) create a cross-border market that gathers the fragmented resources of cities and smart innovation potential of businesses and 2) increase the capacity of cities to activate the dormant demand for smart public services.
To capture 2Seas open data potential and advance RIS3, SCIFI develops a transregional smart innovation framework:
- Activate demand: Mechelen, Delft, Bruges, Saint-Quentin and associated cities (eg Suffolk, Cambridge) increase their technical capacity in open data and innovative market engagement.
- Connect supply and expertise: Innovators are connected through business associations (Cambridge Cleantech, Agoria and transregional sister organisations). Faubourg Numérique (FN) and Southampton University (UoS) leverage their expert role in transnational open data initiatives (ODINE, OASC, ENoLL, FIWARE).
- Demonstrate value: SCIFI uses an accelerator programme to test the framework conditions for innovation in mobility, energy, and clean environment. FN (Living Lab expert) and UoS (accelerator expert) coach cities and businesses in challenge identification, procurement, solution co-creation & implementation. These will be success stories which demonstrate the value from open data.
SCIFI creates transnational outputs that launch the framework conditions for innovation in smart public services in the 2Seas:
- A 4-Helix network of 2000 members (eg Agoria alone has 1700 members). AG and CCT enable businesses to scale their services to multiple clients. FN represents local high-tech businesses; Delft connects to its innovation community (TNO). Partner cities involve regional peers.
- An Accelerator where experts (FN, UoS) provide coaching addressing technical and practical hurdles of public-private innovation in public services (mobility, energy, clean environment): IPR, new business models, value of data, etc. The 4 Cities will develop 8-12 cases, of which 4-6 solutions will be implemented and used as success stories.
- Guidance on existing open data tools and methods (ODI 5-Star model, European Open Data Portal, FIWARE, Smart Flanders) and innovative public procurement.
Cross border approach
- 2 Seas network: Partner cities (NL, BE, FR) and observer partner (UK) draw from regional support groups (eg Hauts-de-France Region, see LoS) and transnaional city clusters (see image 2) that collaborate on specific shared challenges. Business associations (AG, CCT) involve sister organisations from other countries. Renowned open data experts (FN, UoS) link to transnational smart city initiatives (OASC, ENoLL, ODINE).
- Cross-border procurement: Clusters of cities co-define shared public service needs and develop Terms of Reference for procurement. A harvesting platform for smart service calls in the public sector is created to broadcast opportunities to businesses across the region. Cities also cross-publish calls for tenders.
- Top-level harmonisation: SCIFI will facilitate members in the uptake of internationally developed open data standards driven by technology providers (Fiware, Smart-FI, Open Data Portal Europe, ODI). These will enable future cross-border compatibility.
The first cycle of the accelerator (SO3) started in 2018. Challenges were defined and in 2019 the companies for the pilots were selected. It started in January with one of the most difficult steps: signing a contract that fits the ambition for replicable, cross-border documents and tools (SO1). There was a strong support of Agoria (PP5) in this and with the good coöperation, the project gave further body to the guidance on public-private collaboration (SO1). At the OASC Conference (17/01/2019), the pilot development on 7 cases was officially launched.
The following 6 months, prototypes were developed while the challenges for the second cycle were in preparation. The pilot development was extensively discussed during telco's and meetings, resulting in the cocreation of the open data guidance (Output 2 ), and an update of the accelerator bylaws for cycle 2. In the summer of 2019 most pilots were finalised and presented at local support groups and events. (SO3).
- The contracts and procurement was a difficult milestone. The contract template needed modification for each seperate case and an extra study performed by Corvers offered more guidance.
- Regarding citizen/stakeholder involvement it was noted that answers in surveys and behaviour are not necessarily consequent
- A cost-effective implmenetation needs a more developed IoT structure of the cities, allowing integrations between datasets from different applications
- The Hopu case consistently shows problems with sensors and their connectivity. (private network, power supply, sim-cards...), indicating infrastructure as an extra key element in interoperability
The learning on stakeholder engagement led to a big focus on users involvement in the new case of Bruges (gamification); and to the city of Mechelen not choosing to sign a contract as the proposed solutions for commuting were not at all supported by the companies who should be using them.
Saint-Quentin prepares the procurement with attention for interoperability. The city of Delft is implementing the prototype of the Mechelen Bruges case from Allride. This is the first implementation of a prototype developed in project.
The network of the accelerator (SO2) was enlarged by different activities:
- a redesign of the website to attract more interested parties
- more social media (mainly Twitter and Linkedin)
- hiring the Unknown Group for extra active scouting on companies for the challenges in cycle 2.