EU Commission names participants of Intelligent Cities Challenge 2020-2022


The European Commission’s Intelligent Cities Challenge (ICC) has announced the 90 EU cities that have been selected to participate in ICC over the next two years.

The selected cities will be provided with strategic advice, guidance and peer learning on how best they relaunch their economies towards a green, smart and socially-responsible recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through its action oriented and collaborative approach, the ICC will offer cities a unique opportunity to:

  • Identify local strengths and formulate priorities and real needs: conduct performance assessments, define strategic goals and implementation roadmaps.
  • Engage in long-lasting collaborations to co-design and co-create: through joint open data platforms, EU marketplace for city solutions, and joint investments/procurements.
  • Learn from and share experiences with local and international peers and mentors.

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The cities, selected from 131 Expressions of Interest from 193 cities in 20 countries, will be assisted in planning for large-scale investments and leveraging advanced technologies.

The two-year programme will include:

  • 100 days of local visits, events and network support activities.
  • 100 participating cities of which 10 are international cities.
  • 2020-2022, 30 month programme.

The focus of these investments will be on the green transition of businesses, economic growth and reskilling, urban industrial infrastructure, business-related government services and citizens’ engagement, as well as health and safety.

The ICC will build on the success of the Digital Cities Challenge to help cities to improve the quality of life for residents and create new opportunities for their business communities. The Digital Cities Challenge helped 41 EU cities develop a strategic vision and a roadmap for digital transformation.

Technologies to be looked at will include renewable energies, mobility, clean industry, green manufacturing, crisis management, and healthcare and safety.

A list of selected cities is available at

Commenting on the success of the Digital Cities Challenge, Timo Pesonen directorate-general for the internal market, industry, entrepreneurship, and SMEs, said: “Cities are key enablers to drive growth, job creation and sustainable progress. As centers of economic activity, employment, and innovation, cities have a vital role to play when it comes to promoting smart, sustainable, and inclusive growth and tackling economic, environmental and social challenges.

“By addressing the modern-day challenges with the potential of advanced technologies, we will connect more city-ecosystems and empower them to achieve social and environmental sustainability together with smart growth. This will pave the way for a strategy for EU Cities in the 21st century.”