WHY DO WE HOLD A CITIES STARTUP STARTUP EUROPE AWARDS?
Cities are currently gaining importance in our societies. According to the World Bank, more than 180,000 people commute to their cities each day thus becoming daily urban population. By 2030, the urbanization process will lead the 60% of the worldwide population to live in urban areas. That rate will be even bigger in Europe, where two thirds of the European population already lives in urban areas. The importance of cities is, therefore, huge and their role is vital if we bear in mind the challenges we have to face: climate change, immigration, water, waste, employment, energy, etc.
As Jaime Lerner, architect and major of Curitiva, said, cities are not the problem, they are the solution. This is like that because cities are also the nodes of knowledge, creativity and the ideas interchange. They are the places in which innovation may easily arise.
When we talk about cities, Europe has a lot to add to the world context. Its urban models have lots of mistakes to solve, but still are very close to the sustainable development ideal. They reach the balance between the unsustainable sprawl of most of the American cities or the high population density of most of the Asiatic macro-cities.
Therefore, these awards aims at recognising the European leadership position, as well as going on supporting the innovation and creativity in such a crucial area for the world’s development.
It aims at rewarding the best startups working in projects related with the intelligent management of cities, covering topics such as planning, mobility, waste management, energy efficiency, water cycle,citizen participation, etc.
The most important eligibility criteria are the following:
- Sustainability: the product or service must contribute to reduce the ecological impact of the city, thus increasing the sustainability from an environmental, social and economic point of view.
- Innovation: We will focus on the grade of innovation, disruption and originality of the startups.
- Governance: The product or service proposed will ease the citizen participation in the city management and it will allow to directly interact with the citizens’ needs or opinions.
- Business model: We will rate the added value to society resulting from the startups (economic viability, private-public collaboration, replicability, etc.).
- Social Clauses: job generated, gender policy, social inclusion, collaboration with NGOs, trainees program.
- European Dimension: participation in European funded projects, partnership or agreements with other European partners.