The European Commission awarded the 2017 European Capital of Innovation (iCapital) prize of €1,000,000 to Paris (France). The iCapital award, granted under the EU's research and innovation programme Horizon 2020, recognises Paris for its inclusive innovation strategy. Tallinn (Estonia) and Tel Aviv (Israel) were selected as runners-up, and were both awarded €100,000. The prize money will be used to scale up and further expand the cities' innovation efforts.

Over the last decade, Paris has built more than 100 000 square meters of incubators, and hosts now the world's largest start-up campus. In addition, the city spends 5% of its budget on projects proposed and implemented by citizens. Thanks to this strategy, citizens and innovators from the private, non-profit and academic sectors have made Paris become a true FabCity.

The Reinventing Paris project is a good example of how the city facilitates innovation by inviting national and international talents to rebuild many of its significant sites. In the current phase of the project the city is inviting interdisciplinary teams to submit innovative urban development projects for transforming a number of underground sites in Paris.

Tallinn has been awarded for its initiative to act as a testing ground for potential breakthrough technologies. The municipality fostered the use of self-driving cars, parcel delivery robots and ride-sharing. Tallinn has also implemented an innovative e-Residency system, which enables local citizens and businesses to work closely together with foreign entrepreneurs.


Tel Aviv has set up a Smart City Urban Lab that links up innovative start-ups with leading technology companies in order to facilitate breakthrough innovations for solving urban challenges. Education being among Tel Aviv's priorities, part of the prize will be dedicated to strengthening the Smart Education Initiative, developed by the municipality in collaboration with teachers, parents, students and local tech start-ups.