Supporting BSR cities to implement public procurement of innovation while providing practical tools created using AI technologies and gamification methods

The first round of CityLabs took place in Lithuania, Estonia, and Finland

30 April 2024
The PPI4cities project facilitates cities in initiating this process with three pilot initiatives held in Tampere, Tartu, and Panevėžys this spring.
Technical details


In the ever-evolving landscape of urban governance, the pursuit of innovative solutions isn’t just a choice, but a necessity. Given that broad stakeholder involvement is crucial for the successful implementation of public procurement of innovation, cities encounter significant challenges in engaging SMEs, policymakers, civil society, NGOs, and other stakeholders. Recognizing this, the PPI4cities CityLab co-creation concept establishes a framework for multi-level and cross-sectoral involvement of local innovation agents within a cohesive structure, aiming to bolster the regional innovation ecosystem by enhancing co-creation potential.

The PPI4cities project facilitates cities in initiating this process with three pilot initiatives held in Tampere, Tartu, and Panevėžys this spring.

“The Tartu event targeted procurement professionals and public sector procurers interested in procuring innovation, seeking best practices and practical tools for procurement. Our primary aim was to acquaint the audience with practical methods for identifying innovative procurement opportunities: how to spot innovative solutions, strategies for implementing innovative procurement within organizations, experiences in procuring innovative solutions domestically and internationally, and diverse approaches to achieving innovative objectives through procurement,” explains Kadri Raik, one of the organizers of the Tartu CityLab.

Similar target audiences convened in Panevėžys and Tampere, eager to glean insights into public procurement of innovation and best practices in the Baltic Sea Region.

“The public sector harbors immense untapped potential for procuring innovation. How can we unlock this potential? Cities worldwide collectively spend approximately $6 billion on procuring goods and services from the private sector, accounting for 8% of the world’s GDP. What if even a fraction of this financial resource were redirected towards procuring innovation? This was precisely the topic under discussion at the Panevėžys CityLab, organized by our partners Panevėžys NOW” remarks P. Bacevičus, an expert from the Lithuanian Innovation Center.

In conclusion, the PPI4cities CityLabs represent a vital step forward in addressing the pressing need for innovative solutions in urban governance. By fostering multi-level and cross-sectoral engagement, these events provide a platform for sharing knowledge, best practices, and practical tools for advancing public procurement of innovation. The insights gained from events like those in Tartu, Panevėžys, and Tampere underscore the immense potential within the public sector to drive innovation and stimulate economic growth. Moving forward, it is essential to build upon these foundations, harnessing the collective expertise and resources of stakeholders to create more resilient, inclusive, and sustainable cities for future generations.