5 May 2021

41 suppliers selected to design artificial intelligence solutions to help cities reach carbon neutrality

In December 2020, a 'Buyers Group' of six cities and regions launched a Request for Tenders, inviting suppliers to submit innovative artificial intelligence (AI) solutions in the fields of energy and mobility, which will help cities and regions to reach carbon neutrality. This represented the first step in the group's 'Pre-Commercial Procurement' (PCP) process, in which the cities outline their needs, and invite suppliers to pitch non-market-ready solutions suited specifically to support them. Following thorough evaluation by the Buyers Group, 41 suppliers have been selected and given funds to move forward to the 'Solution Design' phase of this PCP.

The Buyers Group was convened as part of the AI4Cities project, and consists of: Forum Virium Helsinki (representing the ICLEI Member Helsinki (Finland)), ICLEI Members Copenhagen (Denmark) and Stavanger (Norway), as well as Cap Digital (representing Paris Region), the City of Amsterdam, and the City of Tallinn.

The group's Request for Tenders shed light on the vast potential of AI solutions. AI can analyse travel patterns to devise more efficient routes and timetables, contributing to a much lower environmental footprint. AI-based recommendations can optimise the use of electric vehicle charging locations. An AI tool can dramatically reduce the time required to assess, plan and promote investments for energy flexibility and efficiency in buildings. And, AI can be used to maximise local renewable electricity utilisation, through demand-side management, using buildings for distributed thermal energy storage. These are just four of the 41 proposed solutions that the Buyers Group has selected to continue to the Solution Design Phase of the PCP process.

Each of the cities and regions represented by the Buyers Group have developed ambitious strategies and policy plans to become carbon neutral by 2050 at the latest. Through AI4Cities, they have joined forces, supported by expert partner ICLEI Europe, to go through a PCP process to help them accelerate their transition to carbon neutrality, by utilising AI and related technologies – such as big data applications, 5G, edge computing and IoT.

The 41 selected suppliers now have three months and up to €40,000 each in funding to further develop their AI solutions, after which the Buyers Group will further whittle down the field, selecting the most promising solutions to move on to a prototyping phase.

To view a list of all of the companies selected to move forward to solution design, please click here.

For more information on AI4Cities, click here.