STandards in European Public Procurement lead to INnovation

The main objective was to stimulate innovation through reference to standards in public procurement. STEPPIN had to ensure that knowledge that is being created is attractive for purchasers and is written in their professional-language so they can use it. The purchaser is our client.

The project STEPPIN (Standards in European Public Procurement lead to INnovation) was funded by the 6th framework programme. It was part of a series of project addressing the interrelation between standards and innovation. Whereas the other project have a specific sector or technology focus, STEPPIN addressed the potential standards can play in public procurement processes to promote innovation.

Representing more than 15% of European Gross Domestic Product, public procurement is both a key source of demand for firms in sectors such as construction, health care, environment, security and transport, and a major area in which governments are striving to improve effectiveness. In addition, the European Commission recognised that procurement could be used to provide pioneer markets for new research and innovation-intensive products. Finally, meanwhile it also acknowledged that standards are an effective and efficient instrument to promote the diffusion of innovative technologies and products.

The approach of the project was to start from a survey of the present situation, via analysis and extensive discussion and involvement of networked stakeholders, via a practical handbook and knowledge gathered in STEPPIN databases for procurement, to a motivated and interested group of early users in all 25 Member States and to policy recommendations.

The STEPPIN project was based on a Consortium of 14 partners from 7 Member states of the EU. The main objective of the project was to stimulate innovative business solutions in all member states by using standards in public procurement. The focus of the project was laid on the use of standards in terms of specifying the required solution and not on the standardization of the procurement process itself. In the long term a strategic influence on the development of markets will evolve, as standards play an important role in the market diffusion process. In such a way new innovative business solutions can be supported. Beyond standards will evolve a trendsetting effect.

Topic Area

  • Service Management


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