Open Evidence, in consortium with PwC, Technopolis Group and the network Open and Agile Smart Cities (OASC), will conduct a study for the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission to understand, through an extensive use of sandboxing, the policy implications of different governance approaches, business models and opportunities for the development and various uses of local (at city level) data ecosystems and digital twins – together with their implications on public sector innovation. The consortium will engage with a number of European cities to establish testing technical environments in an agile and inclusive manner that would help gain valuable insights into the way in which data-driven innovations work and benefits different stakeholders. 

Regional and local digital innovation is playing an increasingly important role for the implementation of the political agenda defined by the “Europe fit for the digital age” priority. This project will contribute to examine in detail multiple good practices in different cities and regions that can be scaled, sustained and further developed in light of the new political priorities. Within that context, the (Join, Boost, Sustain) initiative is already paving the way for a unique European way of digital transformation in cities and communities.

The project will include a first in-depth analysis of the data ecosystems that already exist in some European cities. For a selected number of cities, the consortium will explore the possibility to establish sandboxing as an agile and flexible approach for fostering data-driven innovation and sustaining good practices. In collaboration with the city administrations, the consortium will gain insights from hands-on experience with sandboxing in topics, such as, personal data spaces, predictive analytics, use of digital twins for decision support, and new governance models. Finally, the results will be validated through workshops and other consultation activities with other city administrations. The consortium will provide policy recommendations to the European Commission based on the results collected.