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European Innovation Council
European Innovation Procurement Awards

Recognising the efforts done by public and private buyers to promote and implement innovation procurement across Europe


On 26 June 2024, the European Commission will officially launch the 2024-2025 edition of the European Innovation Procurement Awards.

Innovation procurement boosts the process of transforming research results and ideas into innovative solutions. It represents an untapped potential to stimulate the demand for innovation. 

By putting in place dedicated strategies aimed to lift and enhance the use of innovation procurement, the public and private sectors can provide state-of-the-art services and goods to the society and, at the same time, offer new growth and commercialisation opportunities for suppliers of disruptive solutions, particularly start-ups and SMEs. 


The European Innovation Procurement Awards feature two categories:

  • Innovation procurement initiative (including implementation) category: to reward actions, and mid/long-term strategies and action plans that trigger different innovation procurements as well as to reward procurements of R&D services and/or procurements to buy and deploy innovative solutions.
  • Facing societal challenges category: - “Net Zero Industry Procurement”: to reward procurement practises and/or the procurement of R&D services and/or the procurement and deployment of innovative solutions that contribute to achieving the goals set out in the Net Zero Industry Act. This may include solutions that promote circularity, energy efficiency, and the use of renewable energy in industry, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and promote sustainable and responsible production and consumption.

Each category will reward the winner with EUR 75 000, one second place with EUR 50 000, and one third place with EUR 25 000.

Funding opportunities

Participants can only apply to one of the two categories with the same application and set of activities.

The call will open on 26 June 2024 and the deadline is 26 September 2024, 17:00:00 CET. The evaluation will occur between September 2024 and January 2025 and the winners will be announced between January and March 2025.

You can consult the EIC Work Programme 2024 featuring the full EUIPA Awards call text. 

Who should apply

The contest is open to any public and private buyers, natural persons and those legal entities supporting these practices located in one of the EU Member States or Associated Countries to Horizon Europe.

Eligibility criteria

  • Eligible applicants are any public and/or private procurer, individuals/natural persons and/or legal entities supporting the use of innovation procurement established in one of the Member States including overseas countries and territories (OCTs) or Associated Countries to Horizon Europe. 
  • The awarded procurement/procurement practice must have taken place in a Member State (including overseas countries and territories, OCTs) or in an Associated Country to Horizon Europe; 
  • The awarded procurement /procurement practice must relate to completed or ongoing initiatives started after 1 January 2019. In the case of ongoing activities, only work completed by the submission deadline will be considered for the prize (Applicants will be required to prove the starting date of the practice by providing supporting documents); 
  • Applicants can only apply to one of the two categories for the same set of activities; 
  • Winners of former European Innovation Procurement Awards editions, as well as runners-up of the previous edition are not eligible; 
  • Applicants that have already received an EU or Euratom prize cannot receive a second prize for the same activities.

Applicants are expected to provide proof of eligibility upon request. 

Applicants must register in the Participant Register — before the call deadline — and will have to be validated by the Central Validation Service (REA Validation). For the validation, you will be requested to upload documents showing legal status and origin.

Award criteria

  1. Transformation – stimulating innovation procurement with the aim to ensure a sustainable and inclusive growth. In this criterion, the applicant should bear in mind that this transformation refers to the shift into (a) buying the process of innovation (research and development services); (b) buying the outcomes of innovation; or (c) the establishment of innovation procurement friendly frameworks which include tools to measure results of support actions.
  2.  Uptake – the innovative procurement practice or action is replicable and scalable, and therefore, contributes to providing, more efficient and effective solutions. In this criterion, among others, the applicant should provide information (KPIs) about how the procurement practice/action is replicable and scalable, the number of countries, entities and/or sectors where the solution has been implemented and/or replicated; or about how it has provided more efficient and effective solutions.
  3.  Collaboration – demonstrated co-operation linked to the innovation procurement practice. Special attention should be paid to the establishment of synergies, to the promotion of best practices, to the support to capacity building and skill development, and to the efforts of knowledge sharing between stakeholders within the different territories, especially among those at different state of maturity in innovation procurement. In this criterion, among others, the applicant should provide information (KPIs) about the number of partners (including start-ups, universities, academics, public and private organisations) involved in this collaboration; publications; conferences and events organised/attended to share knowledge, actions implemented to foster collaboration; or about the ratio of engagement and influence within the innovation ecosystem.
  4.  Innovative SMEs and start-ups access to procurement markets – how the innovative procurement practise or action facilitates the access of innovative SMEs and start-ups (including but not limited to EIC beneficiaries) to procurement markets. Complementarity and synergies with other EIC initiatives aimed at supporting and fostering innovation procurement in the European Union must be taken into account. (Please be aware that previous involvement with other EIC initiatives aimed at supporting and fostering innovation procurement in the European Union will not affect the evaluation outcome of applications. The evaluation outcome will not be affected by the fact whether an application exploited synergies (i.e. the application was involved with EIC initiatives or EIC beneficiaries) or whether it did not exploit such synergies (i.e. the application was complementary to involvement with EIC beneficiaries or EIC initiatives that support innovation procurement).
  5. Societal impact – procurement practices/actions with a demonstrated positive quantitative and qualitative impact on society, with special emphasis to achieving the green deal and digital transformation priorities. In this criterion, among others, the applicant should provide information (KPIs) about the number of purchased and deployed solutions and/or projects implemented that contribute to achieving green and digital transitions; or about concrete positive transformations in the ecosystem.

How to apply

Please consult the rules of contest before submitting your application through the links above. (NB: the new rules of contest will be published on 26 June).

  1. 26 June 2024
    Call opening
  2. 26 September 2024 – 17:00 CET
    Deadline for submissions
  3. September 2024 and January 202
  4. January - March 2025
    Information on evaluation results/award

Guidelines for applicants

On 30 May 2024, the European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency (EISMEA) has organised an informative webinar to learn more about the 2024-25 edition of the European Innovation Procurement Awards (EUIPA). 

You can check the experts' presentations and event's recordings for further information about the Prize and the application procedure. 


Previous editions

Check full details of the previous editions:

EUIPA 2023

EUIPA 2022

EUIPA 2021

Contact us

For more information please contact us at EISMEA-EUIPAWARDSatec [dot] europa [dot] eu (EISMEA-EUIPAWARDS[at]ec[dot]europa[dot]eu)

Please check this webpage for updates, and follow #EUIPAwards on Twitter @EUeic or subscribe to our newsletter.



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