City spotlight: València, a front-runner in the European Capital of Innovation race

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European Capital of Innovation race

The European Capital of Innovation race is at its final stage. Below, we’ll analyze one of this year’s contestants: València. The city has taken several measures, aiming at the prize.

 The contest to be the EU’s innovation capital has reached its last stage. On the 5th August, the Commission announced the 12 finalists. Examples of these are Ghent (Belgium), Groningen (The Netherlands) or Reykjavik (Iceland). These are chosen on the basis of their innovation ecosystems. Also, it’s taken into account the impact of these on the lives of local inhabitants.

The European Capital of Innovation race is ferocious. The winner receives the title of European Capital of Innovation 2020, together with €1,000,000. These are allocated to support innovation policies, and to improve the lives of locals. Such can be done through public institutions, academia or the private sector. Five runners-up will get €100,000 each, too.

Of the twelve finalists, one is striving hard for the title. This regards València, the southern-European city in Spain. The place was nominated due to its Missions València 2030, a strategy developed by the City Council and Las Naves Innovation Center. The guideline tries to simulate innovation across different sectors of the city, to impact the city’s population.

The strategy focuses on 4 important areas: health; community; entrepreneurship and sustainability. The first aims to improve individual well-being through active ageing, and promotion of healthy habits. Developing collective welfare is the second’s goal. Such will be done through decreasing inequality, and tackling poverty. The third wishes to boost the local startup ecosystem. The fourth will make València an environment-friendly city.

The strategy is seen as a natural follow-up, regarding the city’s policies over the last years. For example, the city expanded its bike line to reduce CO2 emissions. Also, it has promoted the digitalization of services.

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