Q – In which city will I prototype my solution?
A – Mechelen (Belgium), Bruges (Belgium), Delft (The Netherlands) and Saint-Quentin (France) have each formulated their own challenge. The challenge/business case you select to apply for decides on the city you will work with. In the challenge descriptions the concerned city will always be indicated.
Q – I’m a student – can I apply as well?
A – Yes, but you need a legal entity. Many universities have a dedicated legal entity to start commercial activities by for example students. Ask your university what they can offer in this field.
Q – I want to create my startup but I don’t have a legal entity yet – can I apply to the open call?
A – You need a legal entity to participate in the open call. Or you create your legal entity or check incubators/accelerators. Often they have a dedicated legal entity to start commercial activities that can be used by early stage startups.
Q – My solutions requires certain datasets, but they are not available in the city. What do I do now?
A – Indicate in your proposal what you need to generate the needed datasets and give an estimation of costs of buying the equipment in the budget in the application form. The city will purchase the equipment if necessary. The budget of the equipment will not be taken in account in the funding of up to 10k€ of the pilot (your budget needed for the pilot will not be penalized by the height of the equipment costs).
Q – Why must my solution be interoperable?
A – Your solution must be interoperable by design between cities because we consider that one city is not a market. To assure the uptake of smart city solutions by mid-sized cities and thus to scale-up your market we are looking for solutions can be easily replicated by other cities. Solutions must be ready to use in any city, regardless of size or capacity. Interoperability will increase the speed and openness of innovation and development, whilst decreasing cost and inefficiency. Solutions that don’t consider interoperability are not withheld within SCIFI.
Q – Why are the various stakeholders so important in the various steps of the development of my solution? A working solution should be enough.
A – We support the creation of an open smart city market based on the needs of cities, communities and citizens. Without engagement of all parties involved a solution cannot be successful.
Q – How developed should the solution be at the end of the accelerator process with the budget of EUR10,000?
A – Please mind that during the 6-month accelerator, we do not expect the development of a full-blown solution that is up-and-running in the city. The accelerator is an opportunity to develop and showcase a proof of concept. After the accelerator period, the city, the other SCIFI partner cities and/or cluster cities can decide to go for a full implementation of that solution, at a suitable market price.
The SCIFI accelerator provides as well a direct access to cities and an opportunity to closely work together with the stakeholders in the cities to assure that the proof of concept meets better the expectations of your potential market. Furthermore entering the SCIFI accelerator program offers you, through the cities and city clusters, but also through the connected business networks, SCIFI communication channels and Smart City events, exposure in the 2-seas countries to accelerate your market access.
To that extent, we consider entering the accelerator programme and the 10,000 € as a launching pad for your companies activities.