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 was being created was attractive for purchasers and was written in their professional-language so they could use it.

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.


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