PAPIRUS means innovative public procurement

Written by Paweł Nowakowski on 20 September 2016 in Opinion Plus
Opinion Plus

The PAPIRUS project tested Public Procurement of Innovation in the field of energy efficiency of buildings and developed educational tools on proper implementation of PPI, explains Paweł Nowakowski.

The PAPIRUS project consortium’s expectation was to obtain nearly zero energy materials that could be used in repairing as well as constructing particular buildings | Photo credit: Fotolia


Between  2007-2013, the European Commission implemented the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) that was aimed at innovation supportive activities, and targeted particularly at small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The international pilot project PAPIRUS (Public Administration Procurement Innovation to Reach Ultimate Sustainability) has been carried out as the CIP Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme (EIP).

PAPIRUS employed a Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI) process in the area of sustainability, and specifically in the field of energy saving technologies on construction market, and announced four international tenders in Germany, Italy, Norway and Spain.


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Within the announced procurement, the project consortium’s expectation was to obtain nearly zero energy materials that could be used in repairing as well as constructing particular buildings.

The implemented approach met the standards of PPI, aimed to motivate entrepreneurs to propose innovative solutions and was targeted mainly at small and medium-sized enterprises. The applied procedure was also highly SME-friendly.

PAPIRUS has been implemented by several partners from Germany, Italy, Norway, Poland and Spain, and has been coordinated by a Spanish private research and technology organisation Fundación Tecnalia Research and Innovation.

Nevertheless, the project consortium consists mostly of public bodies, which is associated to the fact that public sector is influential and strives to stimulate development of innovative and efficient services and goods, including the transformation of buildings and construction market.

The project result was also a guide for public procurers, which was co-authored by a few representatives of the project consortium. The guide is available online for free and presents the basics of the PPI policy, its benefits, and elaborates in detail the steps towards proper implementation of PPI, i.e.: evaluation of needs, organising and planning, dialogue with the market, tender implementation, evaluation process and contract assignment.

What is highly important, the document contains many examples, tips and experiences from the PPI process that has been implemented within the framework of PAPIRUS.

It is also worth mentioning that another PAPIRUS output concerning training activities is a free eLearning course for public procurers: New eLearning course makes Public Procurement of Innovation easier

The final project conference will take place on 29 September 2016 in Bilbao, Spain, where the results of the PAPIRUS project as well as the PPI procedure will be presented by experts during two sessions including workshops (the conference agenda is available online using the links below).

The conference will address all those interested in PPI policy, in particular public procurers, suppliers, experts and policymakers.

Register in English or in Spanish for the PAPIRUS final conference in Bilbao, Spain.

The PAPIRUS PPI guide is available in several languages

About the author

Paweł Nowakowski is a Junior Project Manager in ASM Market Research and Analysis Centre Ltd.

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