Imagine a local council that needs to acquire innovative solutions so as to eliminate all plastic from their operations. Such solutions may already be available on the market. The council may be unaware of this, or the solutions may have to be developed from scratch. Public procurement can be an important instrument for inducing innovation and R&D activities, both in companies and in public entities purchasing products and services.

ANI, a member of iBuy consortium, will organize, on October 16, the “Capacity building a driver for IPP [Innovation Public Procurement] transnational cooperation” international seminar at the Auditorium of the National Laboratory of Civil Engineering. 150 specialists, originating from 40 organizations within 12 different countries, are expected to participate.

In what will be the first event held in Portugal regarding Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI), the importance of Competence Centres and of other public policy instruments for promoting empowerment in implementing public contracting of innovation, shall be discussed. This will also be an opportunity to discuss the role of Public Procurement in the promotion of innovation and of cross-border cooperation opportunities.

During the morning, the discussion will be centred around case studies relative to Public Procurement of Innovation in six countries (Finland, Lithuania, Latvia, Romania, Greece and Spain), where it will be possible to discuss public procurers’ skills as a critical factor for success. The afternoon will be dedicated to showcasing the experiences of five European Competence Centres:  Austria (PPPI), Germany (KOINNO), the Netherlands (PIANOo), Spain (CDTI) and Sweden (Nationella upphandlingsstrategin). There will also be a round table available for countries in which future IPP Competence Centres have been proposed: Portugal, Estonia, Greece, Ireland and Italy.

Public contracting of Innovation is currently limited in Portugal. Within the scope of the Technological and Business Innovation Strategy for 2018-2030, ANI is committed to contribute towards driving sectors of strategic interest such as health, space, biotechnology, agriculture, agroindustry or the maritime sector. With this in mind, in 2018 the agency formalized a protocol for cooperation with the IMPIC - Instituto dos Mercados Públicos, do Imobiliário e da Construção (the Institute of Public Markets, Real Estate and Construction). Serving as the foundation for the two entities’ joint efforts will be the activities developed towards the implementation of Interreg Europe iBuy and Procure2Innovate (Horizon 2020), two international projects currently underway at the national level on behalf of ANI, with close monitoring performed by the IMPIC.

The “Capacity building a driver for IPP [Innovation Public Purchases] transnational cooperation” seminar will be a moment for the further development and convergence of knowledge regarding concepts and practices of Public Procurement of Innovation.