AI accelerating cities' transition to carbon neutrality


AI4Cities is a three-year EU-funded project bringing together leading European cities looking for artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and meet their climate commitments. Helsinki (Finland), Amsterdam (Netherlands), Copenhagen (Denmark), Paris Region (France), Stavanger (Norway) and Tallinn (Estonia) are the six European cities and regions involved in this project that has just kicked off.

Through AI4Cities, these cities and regions will go through a Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) process, an innovation procurement tool that enables the public sector to steer the development of new solutions directly towards its needs. First, the buying authorities will define the needs and requirements of those solutions on the energy and the mobility fields they would like to see developed in order to move towards carbon neutrality. Then, they will challenge startups, SMEs, bigger companies and other relevant stakeholders to design innovative solutions applying the use of AI and related enabling technologies, such as 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing and big data applications. The total funding amount to be divided among the selected suppliers throughout the whole PCP process is 4.6 million euros.


Who we address?

  • Suppliers providing AI solutions in the energy and mobility fields
  • Cities interested in going through Pre-Commercial Procurement


What will be done?

    AI4Cities is divided into five main phases: one preparatory phase (0), three standard PCP phases (1-3) and one final impact assessment and follow up phase (4).

During the preparation phase (Phase 0), the procuring cities will organise a series of activities – roundtables, workshops, and matchmaking events, amongst others – aimed at ensuring the open market consultation is an ambitious co-creation exercise.

The PCP process will consist of a solution design phase (Phase 1), a prototype phase (Phase 2) and a prototype testing phase (Phase 3). AI4Cities will reach the supply side to select and fund a minimum of 40 contractors (20 for the energy challenge and 20 for the mobility challenge) who, during Phase 1, will present their reports with a concept design, results of their feasibility studies and conclusions. Then, a minimum of 20 contractors (ten for each of the two challenges) will be invited to develop their prototypes in Phase 2. Finally, a minimum of six contractors (three and three) will make it into Phase 3 where a series of larger scale pilots will be undertaken. To maximise the potential impact of the project, a group of cities will be recruited to follow the PCP process and support the uptake of the outcomes. ICLEI will be responsible for recruiting those cities.

The final stage (Phase 4) will focus on promoting PCP results for interested parties.

Timeline: January 2020 to December 2022.

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 871914. The sole responsibility for any error or omissions lies with the editor. The content does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Commission. The European Commission is also not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained herein.

AI4Cities project co-ordinator:

Forum Virium Helsinki (FI)

AI4Cities partners:
  • City of Amsterdam (NL)

  • Cap Digital (FR)

  • City of Copenhagen (DK)

  • City of Tallinn (EE)

  • City of Stavanger (NO)

  • ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability (DE)

Contact Project Coordinator

Kaisa Sibelius (Forum Virium Helsinki): kaisa.sibelius(at)