Procurement of Innovation platform

Our Stories

9 January 2019

Interview with the PPPI Service Center in Austria

What does the PPPI Service Center offer to procurers?
The PPPI Service Center offers the following services:
PPPI online Platform: Open Innovation Challenges and Marketplace Innovation that serve as a brokerage tool between procurers and innovative suppliers.
Networking and events: Building a community of innovative procurers, and organisation of conferences and learning labs.
Training: Establishing a common body of knowledge on innovation amongst the public procurers, and internal and external trainings and workshops
PPPI Pilot projects: Initiating and supporting PPI projects in Austria
Strategic PPPI consultancy: Supporting organisations in their innovation process, and consulting on the design and implementation of innovation strategies.
Monitoring and documentation: Developing KPIs to quantify innovative procurement, publishing of annual reports on the situation of PPI in Austria, and providing a project database
Platform: Public procurers use the platform for market research and companies can present their products and services

If a company is interested in learning more about innovation and sustainable procurement, can it address the PPPI Service Center?
Yes, Austrian companies can address us if they have any questions about innovation-oriented and/or sustainable public procurement. We can offer them basic information and put them in touch with the right contact person within our network. In addition, they have the option of joining our market place for innovation. Furthermore, we have a colleague who is specialises in Green Public Procurement.

Is innovation an extended practice in Austria?
Public Procurement Promoting Innovation (PPPI) has become a cornerstone of demand side innovation policy in Austria. After the adoption of the Action Plan on PPPI by the Austrian Federal Government in 2012, constant work regarding PPPI and its development in the years 2013 and 2014 followed, creating the basis for the now well-established and well-functioning PPPI service network. Our bi-annual report describes the PPPI activities and developments during the years 2015 and 2016, which were characterised by the refinement and expansion of various PPPI measures. In accordance with the main objective of the PPPI initiative, we are focusing on increasing the share of the public procurement volume used for innovation. These innovative products and services, in turn, support the modernisation of the public sector.

Numerous examples show that PPPI is effective and features advantages for all parties (purchasers, companies, citizens) when the public sector procures innovative solutions. Several success stories can be found on our website, e.g. from ministries, city and district administrations, universities and public enterprises. This demonstrates that innovation in public procurement can be justified at every level and in every area, as long as there is a corresponding need.

Who is leading the PPPI initiative?
The PPPI initiative is led by the Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMVIT) and the Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy (BMWFW). It is supported by a network of PPPI competence and contact centres, complementing the central PPPI Service Center that was established in September 2013. Since then, the PPPI Service Center has evolved into the top address for PPPI issues in Austria. Besides the implementation of new service offers and their further development, the PPPI online platform has been established as a novel and promising instrument in Europe for supporting innovation-friendly procurement.

In order to further exploit the potential of PPPI in the future, established services will be continued and new measures implemented within the framework of the PPPI initiative in the coming years. These include, amongst others, the support of pilot projects on the new procedure “innovation partnership” or the development of a training programme for public procurers.

How can innovation procurement contribute to the Austrian society?
With €45 billion of procurement volume, public procurement is one of the most important economic levers in Austria for driving innovation. Innovation in public procurement can contribute to the following:
• higher research and development rates
• bigger growth rate
• more jobs
• better competitiveness and prosperity

In November, you organised the ECOVATION event. How was innovative procurement linked to it?
The ECOVATION event put the spotlight on both innovation and sustainability in public procurement and how these two topics can be combined. The congress was organised by us - the PPPI-Service Center - in cooperation with the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, the Federal Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology, the Federal Ministry of Digital and Economic Affairs as well as the Federal Ministry of Sustainability and Tourism. In their opening speeches, the Austrian Minister of Sustainability and Tourism, Elisabeth Köstinger and the Minister of Transport, Innovation and Technology, Norbert Hofer, gave insights on upcoming initiatives regarding the climate and energy strategy #mission 2030. Minimal consumption of resources within public procurement, as well as initiatives in the area of e-mobility and energy research were among other topics.

Conference delegates enjoyed two days full of interactive workshops, key notes held by field experts as well as pitches from innovative companies, getting insights into topics ranging from circular economy, digitalisation and automation to best practice examples of innovation procurement.

During the panel discussion at the evening event, the role of innovation and sustainability within the public sector was discussed. Through the ECOVATION 2018 event, the PPPI Service Center has provided an international forum for those working in public procurement to meet and discuss innovation and sustainability related issues. Through the international exchange, the event helped to provide further insights and helped to increase awareness of the different issues at hand which public institutions need to deal with.

What does it mean to the PPPI Service Center to be part of the Procure2Innovate Network?
It is great for us to be part of the Procure2Innovate Network. It gives a good opportunity to involve ourselves further in networking, knowledge sharing, collaboration and best practice exchange on innovation procurement with our peers based in different countries. There is a lot to learn from other experienced network partners, for example to enlarge the scope, increase the impact or enhance the services we offer to public procurers in Austria. This network also helps to deepen cross-border cooperation and provides opportunities for setting up joint procurement actions.

The PPPI Service Center is pleased to be able to support the set up of five new innovation procurement competence centres, and help guide them in effectively addressing public procurers, thereby increasing the efficient use of public procurement.

Please visit for the latest developments regarding PPPI in Austria.