Brussels appoints Turin second most innovative city in Europe

The city on the podium of iCapital contest. The submitted dossier about Turin Smart City was written by Torino Wireless Foundation and the Turin University

The European Commission has awarded Amsterdam with the title of European Capital of Innovation 2016 (“iCapital”). Turin was ranked second, before Berlin, Paris, Eindhoven, Glasgow, Oxford, Milan and Vienna. In addition to the prestigious award, Turin also won a cash prize of 100,000 euro to increase ist efforts in supporting innovation.

The Turin’s Application

Torino is converting from an industrial city to a centre of innovation and culture, positioning itself as a capital of innovation in Italy and ambitiously in Europe. Torino adopts an open innovation approach, creating a multi-actor ecosystem and following a three step pathway: networking and planning, integrated initiatives, and territorial participation.

Torino was the first in Italy to define a strategic plan of 45 actions, “SMILE–Smart Mobility, Inclusion, Life&Health and Energy”, co-participated by 350 public and private organizations: in this way Torino got in touch with innovation initiatives by its citizens, such as the first Italian FabLab (makers-space), Arduino labs (open-hardware) and #hackUniTo (an hackathon for the University). They were emerging spontaneously, thanks to territorial fuelling factors such as the strong influence of universities and entrepreneurial services.




Adopting these successful models to trigger innovation, Torino identified a set of integrated initiatives to promote innovation both on the demand and supply side: TSI-FaciliTO, to sustain social innovative startuppers; Innova.To, a call for ideas of public employees to innovate PA from the inside; Open Incet, a centre for open innovation to valorise ideas engaging the community; the Smart Living Labs initiative to encourage innovative Public Private Partnerships; Smart Procurement to create new market opportunities for urban innovations.

The administration supports these initiatives adopting a participatory ecosystemic approach and embraces the model of open innovation, sure that a multiple-helix approach can face better the complex urban problems. To this aim, in 2013 Torino Social Innovation was launched to build an open innovative participation platform of public/private partners that supports bottom-up processes of urban/social innovation. Finally, citizens are involved in the co-production of services using the First Life new local georeferenced social network developed in Torino.


Carlos Moedas (Member of the EC in charge of Research, Science and Innovation),
Enzo Lavolta (Innovation Councillor of Turin Government Body)
e Markku Markkula (President of the Committee of the Regions).


 For further information: iCapital official website