Horizon Europe: POLIS’ one-stop-mobility-shop

Horizon Europe is the European Commission’s flagship research and innovation funding programme with a budget of €95.5 billion, and POLIS is helping its members along each step of the application process, which includes both a better understanding of the calls and their requirements and the identification of partners and groups.

The funding assists Cities and regions in designing and developing innovative solutions to tackling transport related emissions, with smart, sustainable mobility agendas. From WeCount to eCharge4Drivers, to We-Transform, through these projects cities and regions are using EU funds to propel the technical, legislative and human resources required to place us on track to achieve emissions reduction goals and to improve their local transport ecosystem.

2021 is set to be an incredibly exciting year from cities and regions participating in Horizon Europe. Europe’s cities are set to play a pivotal role in Horizon Europe framework programme through the Climate-neutral and smart cities mission, which is being established to provide local authorities with the resources to expand their sustainability strategies.

As a result, POLIS is assisting its members in navigating the application process, developing projects and identifying topics for future funding opportunities.

“Peer to peer exchange, representing your voice, and helping you engage and get better access to research and innovative activities are POLIS’ core aims,” said POLIS Secretary General, Karen Vancluysen, to a (virtually) packed room.

“We help you get involved in EU projects joining local authorities and the industry together.”

Indeed, the Horizon Europe training & info session, held 18 May, was a “one-stop-shop” for members seeking to begin the horizon process.


If emissions are the problem… mobility is the answer!

Horizon Europe holds very exciting opportunities for cities and regions this year through the Climate-neutral and smart cities mission. Through climate neutral contracts (CCCs), cities are able to access a range of key public and private funding sources for sustainability projects, supporting local authorities to participate in activities.

CCCs are a formalised multi-level co-creation process for identifying policy gaps and mobilise stakeholders, tailored to the specific needs of individual cities, establishing the scope, activities and timeline for changes.

The meeting was a chance to hear more about the opportunities available through the mission, and for members to put questions to mission manager, Matthew Baldwin, Deputy Director General, DG MOVE.

This is a topic POLIS has also been addressing, lobbying for a central role for cities and regions in this funding package.


Scanning the Horizon

To provide an overview of Horizon Europe, Siegfried Rupprecht, of Rupprecht Consult presented the programme, its goals, the call process and timeline.

For cities and regions seeking to expand sustainable mobility, navigating this process is crucial. Horizon Europe, the largest research and innovation programme worldwide, has a large budget- €95.5 billion- to address fundamental research, and funds projects which are transforming urban mobility.

Mobility plays a central role in the programme through the ‘Climate, Energy and Mobility’ cluster of the programme. This cluster aims to fight climate change by better understanding its causes, evolution, risks, impacts and opportunities, and by making the energy and transport sectors more climate and environment-friendly, more efficient and competitive, smarter, safer and more resilient.

Siegfried Rupprecht shared his top tips for application.


Breaking out: Sharing ideas, needs and challenges

POLIS is a central cog in the sustainable mobility research and innovation machine, connecting cities and regions with international partners and EU funded projects. The meeting was an opportunity to dive into what topics are available through Horizon Europe, and how members could best use these to address their local needs and priorities.

Participants then moved to breakout sessions on key urban mobility topics:

  • 2Zero, Towards zero emission transport and energy system
  • Cooperative, connected and automated mobility (CCAM), data and digitalization
  • Innovative & sustainable models for urban freight and deliveries
  • Other topics – 15 minute city, safety, new mobility services, collective transport etc.


Want to know more about our lobbying and funding opportunities?

POLIS lobbying activities and funding opportunity meetings bring our members together to discuss the leading urban mobility issues and alert members to the latest opportunities. These meetings are open to POLIS members only, For more information regarding membership please contact our Membership Manager, Pasquale Cancellara.




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