News Details

MI’s new funding call: Helping cities reach across borders to deliver net-zero goals


Previous MI funding calls focused on storage and the digital transition 

The MICall series is one of the four initiatives of the Mission Innovation Platform’s COLLABORATE Module. The MICall series started in 2019 with a transnational joint call for proposals (MICall19) in the field of Energy Storage Solutions. The idea of a joint call is to increase the participation from a wider section of society both to identify the needs of citizens and to find innovative solutions.  The success of the call – where 14 projects were awarded funding from 16 regions/countries, and involving a total of 89 partners spread throughout Europe and India – led to MICall20, which focused on Digital Transformation for Green Energy Transition. Its budget was more than €25 million. Both calls were hosted by the RD&D funding network Joint Programming Platform Smart Energy Systems. 

New funding call: showcasing the role of cities 

A new call – MICall21 – will be hosted by another funding network, JPI Urban Europe. The funding call addresses the role of urban transformation in achieving climate goals. Specifically, it seeks to spur technological and process design innovations to develop climate-neutral urban neighbourhoods that could be building blocks of Positive Energy Districts, or PEDs. 

PEDs are energy-efficient, energy-flexible and net-zero urban areas that produce a local or regional surplus of renewable energy and actively manage this throughout the year to reach overall net-zero carbon status. PEDs require integration of different systems and infrastructure, including buildings, their users and regional energy, mobility and information and communication technology systems. 

The MICall21 focuses on three main areas: 

  1. Convening international experts to address and help solve challenges to implementing PEDs on a transnational level.
  2. Transforming existing urban structures toward climate-neutral neighbourhoods. For example, this could include addressing urban retrofitting strategies and managing complex ownership and stakeholder ecosystems and regulatory frameworks.
  3. Bringing forward innovative solutions for public-private partnerships, business models, stakeholder mobilization and public involvement. 

MICall21’s focus was influenced by the MI Public Funders Dialogue, a new, ongoing discussion among stakeholders to deepen understanding among MI countries about the needs and opportunities of transnational R&I funding collaboration. A first meeting took place in June 2021. Participants agreed to regularly discuss new joint funding formats, as well as new RD&D topics and themes. 

The MICall21 will open on October 6. Projects with at least three countries participating and an average volume of about €1 million are expected to be selected and start by mid-June 2022. Countries and/or their RD&D funding agencies that are interested in joining the call consortium are invited to contact programme coordinator Christoph Gollner.