How it works

City finance lab

In 2015, the city of Paris launched the “Paris Green Fund”, a EUR 100 million fund channelling private climate finance into the development of innovative solutions with a positive impact on climate change by small and medium-sized enterprises. Innovative instruments such as this are crucial in order to accelerate the sustainable transition of cities around the world.

The City Finance Lab supports this transition by providing tailored technical advisory to innovative financing solutions and stimulating scaling and replication, aiming to increase investment in climate-resilient, low-carbon and green urban projects.

The City Finance Lab looks for ideas,which address financing gaps in cities by overcoming the barriers that hinder their ability to develop urban infrastructure, and which preserve key urban resources. The 2018 supported initiatives  are examples of the type of solutions that the City Finance Lab can support.

Other examples of these financing solutions include, but are not limited to:

  • adapting existing finance options and mechanisms to sustainable objectives
  • developing innovative sustainable finance and contracting schemes
  • creating cutting-edge climate-related tools for local governments
  • designing efficient urban funds or trusts aimed at meeting global climate goals
  • replicating successful financing solutions for sustainable initiatives in different economies

To identify trailblazer initiatives for urban climate action, the City Finance Lab organises a call for innovative financing solutions.

In a second step, the City Finance Lab then helps to jumpstart the selected initiatives by bringing together leading city finance experts from public, private and philanthropic organisations. In a unique constellation, this roster of topical and geographical experts ensures that ideas not only become reality, but enable a long-term sustainable impact. The 2019 call for solutions will be exclusively open to European proponents.

The timeline of the 2019 call is detailed below:

1 September – 31 October 2019 Submission

1. Submit a summary of your idea
Click here to submit a summary of your idea (max. 500 words) by 10pm UTC+1 on 15 October 2019.

2. Submit a full proposal
After you submit your idea summary, the City Finance Lab will notify you within three working days whether or not you should submit a full proposal. The submission deadline for full proposals is 10pm UTC+1 on 31 October 2019.

The recording of the City Finance Lab – Call for ideas 2019 webinar can be accessed here.

November 2019 Selection of innovative financing solutions

The City Finance Lab Selection Committee votes to select a shortlist of the most promising solutions.

December 2019 Selection of the technical advisory teams

The City Finance Lab builds teams of technical advisors to support each innovative solution. The proponent will be consulted at this phase, however, the final selection of the technical advisors will be in the hands of the City Finance Lab.

January – December 2020 Development

Shortlisted ideas benefit from expert analysis and guidance in order to strengthen their design, find partners and gain visibility with potential investors.

Members of the City Finance Lab Committee may endorse ideas publicly and provide technical or financial support for their implementation. The City Finance Lab does not itself invest funds in ideas.

Submit an idea

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