Athens, Greece, is among the 12 finalist cities of this year’s European Capital of Innovation Award (iCapital), an annual cash prize awarded to the European city that is best able to demonstrate its ability to harness innovation to improve the lives of its citizens.
The award is given in particular to cities that contribute to open dynamic innovation ecosystems, involve citizens in governance and decision-making and use innovation to improve the resiliency and sustainability of their cities.
Along with Athens, the finalist cities of this year’s European Capital of Innovation Award are Aarhus, Antwerp, Bristol, Gothenburg, Hamburg, Leuven, Lisbon, Madrid, Toulouse, Umeå, Vienna.
Finalists will present their innovation strategies at the ‘iCapital Stories’ session at this year’s European week of regions and cities in Brussels on October 10.
The winner – the European Capital of Innovation 2018 – will be announced at the Web summit in Lisbon on November 6 by Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation.
The city that is named European Innovation Capital of the year will receive 1 million euros, while each of the five runner-up cities will receive 100,000 euros.
The award also recognizes a number of finalist cities specially acknowledged for their efforts in promoting innovation.
Commenting on Athens’ nomination, Athens Mayor Giorgos Kaminis said that the project for the Greek capital began to bear fruit through a variety of innovative programs.
“The neighborhoods are planned together with the residents. The old abandoned buildings are revamped with pioneering management models and open to local communities. Major and smaller-scale pilot actions have managed to bring Athens out of inactivity and put it on a new dynamic track. With innovation, cities can do more with less.”