Do you have an idea for a smarter city? OrganiCity is an EU project that puts people at the centre of the development of future cities – and they’re seeking applications for potential research projects and experiments to tackle key challenges faced by the citizens of London, Aarhus and Santander.

“OrganiCity is trying to activate citizen participation by enabling [citizens]… to conduct their own experiments on an experimental smart city platform”


Not only will those with the best ideas receive a kick-start with up to €60,000 in funding, they will be able to use the experimentation platform, networks, tools and urban-data streams developed by OrganiCity over the last 18 months and will collaborate with their chosen city’s inhabitants – putting collaboration and community at the heart of the project.

OrganiCity Launch Open Call

Get co-creating: Collaboration and idea creation in action
at the OrganiCity launch earlier this year 

John Lynch, Project Lead at the Future Cities Catapult, tells us: “The precedent to OrganiCity is the traditional ‘smart city’ scenario where a major vendor sells a lot of sensing hardware and processing power to a city on the promise of major efficiencies and savings.”

“What OrganiCity is trying to do is to activate citizen participation in this process, enabling a wide demographic base to conduct their own experiments on an experimental smart city platform.”

“The hope is that, by enabling local actors in a local context, new services and solutions will be developed which are much more in tune with the real needs of a city.”

Smart citizens

OrganiCity has the goal of using co-creation to become accessible by as diverse a group of experimenters as the citizens of the cities themselves.

“Much work has been done with citizens to identify the priorities for their cities”


John explains: “Much work has already been done with citizens to identify the priorities for their cities while in parallel an entire platform of technology-tools and data-streams has been built across the three cities.”

“We now open up to the community to see what experimentation on the platform might deliver.”


Project smart city: Check out some of the key challenges the OrganiCity cities face
and how your research idea could impact them

Although the experiments will only be carried out in the cities of Aarhus, London and Santander, entries are open to any individual, association, organisation or businesses legally registered in a member state of the European Union, a Horizon 2020 associated country or developing country. Applications may also be made as an ‘experiment group’, bringing together any combination of the above entities.

We know that there are some big ideas in the South West. So this is a great opportunity to represent the amazing innovators resident here by turning ideas into action in major cities across the EU.

OrganiCity has plans to integrate a further two cities into the project in the near future so – you never know – a South West city might be next on the cards!

The deadline for applications seeking between €10 and €60k in funding is 29 June 2016. There are then further opportunities to enter and receive up to €10k in funding, with those rounds closing on 29 June, 19 September and 1 November 2016.

Find out more about OrganiCity, its entry rules and regulations and more on the OrganiCity website. You can also follow OrganiCity on Twitter: @OrganiCity_EU. For inspiration, you can check out some OrganiCity Scenarios for lots of great ideas.

Alice Whale