Selected – 2016

A European call for proposals on sustainable urban development

The French National Research Agency launches, in partnership with 18 European countries, a joint call for funding multilateral research projects on sustainable urban development.

The ERA-NET Cofund Smart Urban Futures (ENSUF) has been established by the Joint Programming Initiative (JPI) Urban Europe in order to initiate a transnational joint call for RDI proposals.

Europe is today fully immersed in the urban age, with 80 per cent of its citizens living in cities and urban areas. European cities and urban areas are the main drivers of economic development and growth, knowledge and creative generation/production, innovation and benefactors for the liveability. However, cities are not yet sustainable in a broad and substantial sense and also contribute to deprivation, poor health and environmental damage. Therefore there is an identified need for integrative procedures in how to conceive new knowledge and implement new solutions to tackle transition pathways.

The call topics will enable participants to develop projects that aim for substantial impact in shaping smart urban futures.

To help creating attractive, sustainable and economically viable urban areas, in which European citizens, communities and their surroundings can thrive

The specific objective of this call is to promote RDI projects addressing new solutions in the urban field, and demonstrating the feasibility to tackle the implementation gap in urban sustainable development. The implementation gap is here understood as the disconnection between the current state of knowledge in models and visions of sustainable development and the implementation of this knowledge into policy, planning, management and design of European cities. This gap shall be tackled by supporting intermediaries such as transdisciplinary and integrated urban research and innovation projects. To address this and support urban sustainable transitions, the call encourages a more holistic and systemic approach to balance currently predominant sectorial approaches to achieve sustainable urban development and to investigate ways of understanding and managing this complexity.

The projects submitted in this call should aim to cover new and innovative approaches, promote interdisciplinary research and collaboration, and encourage the involvement of civil society, thus bridging gaps between research disciplines, citizens and decision makers, cities and consumers.

Three call topics are defined:

  • Concepts and strategies for smart urban transformation, growth and shrinkage
    While patterns of transformation growth and shrinkage pose challenges to cities across Europe, they also offer opportunities. The projects should create a better understanding of the interplay between cities and their surrounding rural areas in terms of land-use, transport, environment, energy, identify how transformation, growth and shrinkage dynamics can be exploited as an opportunity to revise spatial structures, decision processes and stakeholder cooperation and strengthen favourable practices towards better livelihoods and quality of life.
  • New dynamics of public services
    In recent decades many urban areas in Europe have seen a significant change in the structure and organisation of public service provision. Recent game-changing circumstances and dynamics stemming from economic, social and environmental trends intensify the necessity to rethink traditional models. This topic aims to develop new and innovative approaches in the realm of public services to increase the capacity of urban areas to answer local challenges.
  • Inclusive, vibrant and accessible urban communities
    This topic examines the everyday needs and challenges facing different social and cultural groups in the city, and how individual and community practices, urban governance, businesses, infrastructures and urban regeneration can support sustainable urban development and the peaceful integration of diverse communities.

Submission and evaluation of projects will be carried out in two stages and integrated with other countries. Each country shall fund its national teams according to its own procedures.

Partner search

Partner search forms facilitate the composition of consortia. The forms are used to look for a project partner or a project to join. Click here for the ENSUF partner search page.

The ERA-NET Smart Urban Futures LinkedIn group is an effective and dynamic channel to find partners for submitting proposals.

Opening : 2016-01-08 at 12:40 CET
Application Deadline : 2016-03-15 at 12:00 CET

JPI Urban Europe Call Secretariat:

Johannes Bockstefl
FFG – Austrian Research Promotion Agency
Telephone: +43 5 77 55 5042
Email: johannes.bockstefl(at) 


Joanna Komperda
NCN – National Science Centre Poland
Telephone: +48 12 34 19 138
Email: joanna.komperda(at)


Consult the upcoming and current calls of the portal

The portal centralises all information on calls for proposals and calls for applications from ADEME, ANR, Inserm including ANRS, Anses and INCa. It provides a simplified access to upcoming and ongoing calls, giving a greater visibility to funding opportunities. Following their closing date, the calls remain published for a few months.


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