Frequently Asked Questions
Here you can download the latest pdf version of the FAQ.
Table of content:
What is Joinup?
Many reusable IT solutions are already available on the European Commission's Joinup platform. This collaborative platform includes a repository of tools and services developed by EU countries and European institutions.
What are the categories?
This contest rewards public administrations that have successfully developed and shared the following:
- Most innovative open source software
- Open source software with the biggest impact on citizens or businesses
- Most innovative shared IT services (commonly developed or shared)
- Shared IT services (commonly developed or shared) with the biggest impact on citizens or businesses
How many solutions will be awarded and what is the prize?
Four solutions which win the first place will receive €15,000 (one solution per sub-category). Also, four solutions in the second place in each category will receive €10,000 while the third- and fourth-placed solutions will receive the certificate of excellence.
Who is eligible to participate in the contest?
Public administration(s) from an EU Member State, EFTA country or EU candidate countries (Albania, The former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey) are eligible to participate.
What type of IT solutions are eligible?
IT solutions that meet the following criteria:
- Developed by or for public administrations from an EU Member State, EFTA country or EU candidate country
- Have been reused by at least one other public administration
- Is either an open source software or a shared IT service
- Published with an English description on Joinup
- Have not received a monetary award in the previous Sharing and Reuse Award contest 2017
What if my solution is not published on Joinup?
If your solution is not on Joinup at the time of your contest registration, the Joinup Support Team will be available to help you publish your solution or description of your service.
What is open source software?
(please note that this definition is used for the purposes of the Sharing & Reuse Awards contest)
Open source software is a type of software whose source code is released under a royalty-free licence in which the copyright holder grants users the rights to run, study, modify, enhance, and distribute the software to anyone and for any purpose. An OSS solution is OSS software used as a building block for providing a public service.
What is shared IT service?
(please note that this definition is used for the purposes of the Sharing & Reuse Awards contest)
Shared IT service is a service operated either by a single operator or jointly by various operators on behalf of a number of customers who use the service to provide IT public services to their end users. A shared service may be used by various organisational entities in one public administration or by various organisational entities within various public administrations.
What does 'reuse' mean?
Reuse means to use of existing software or part of it, or services, or software knowledge, to build a new software, following the reusability principles.
My solution is in a language other than English; will it be disqualified?
No. As long as the solution description and supplementary documentation provided via the submission form are in English, your solution will qualify for entry.
Is there an entry fee?
Are solutions developed by the European Commission, the European Parliament or the European Council eligible for participating in the competition?
No. They are excluded to avoid any conflict of interest as Evaluation Committee members come from these bodies.
Can an enterprise that has worked with a public administration on a solution enter the contest?
No. The awards contest is meant for public administrations only. However, administrations with IT solutions developed by private companies can apply. If you are a private company that has developed a solution for a public administration, please ask the public administration to submit the application as only they are eligible to participate in the contest.
My organisation is not based in an EU/EFTA/EU Candidate country. Can we still enter the contest?
No. The current contest is for EU/EFTA/EU candidate countries administrations only.
What is the deadline for entering the contest?
Your registration needs to be submitted by 23:59 on 28 February 2019.
How can I apply for the contest?
You need to fill in the submission form and attach supporting documentation, if any, no later than 23:59 on 28 February 2019.
How do I save a draft of the submission form?
- Choose the category you are applying for, and the related questions will open.
- If you cannot finalise your replies in one go, you can save an incomplete version by selecting the option ‘save draft’.
- Once you have saved a draft version of your responses, you must save (or bookmark) the link that will be given at the end of the session.
- Use this link to access the draft version you saved previously to continue your work on the submission form.
- When you finalise your application, hit ‘submit’.
What information do I need in order to fill in the registration form and what supporting documentation do I need to attach?
The following details need to be provided via the registration form:
- Contact information
- Solution description
- Solution design
- Lessons learnt
- Extent of reuse
- Impact and sustainability
- Extent of innovation
There are no specific requirements for what supporting documentation you may upload, but the more information we receive concerning your solution, the easier it will be for the Evaluation Committee to assess your application. Please note that all solutions must be added to the Joinup catalogue in order to be eligible.
May I submit supplementary material?
Yes. The more information we receive concerning your solution, the easier it will be for the Evaluation Committee to assess it.
What file types may be uploaded?
Any file types may be uploaded during the registration process as long as the individual file size does not exceed 1 MB (and all additional documentation should not be more than 20 pages). For larger files, please use the functional mailbox DIGIT-SR-AWARDS@ec.europa.eu. Supporting documents can, for example, include vision documents, architecture documents, strategy, case studies, etc.
How will I know that you received my submission?
You will receive an online confirmation on the submission form right after you submit your application. The awards team will also send you a confirmation email within three working days.
I found some mistakes in the form I submitted. Can I send a revised form?
No. You will be able to edit your document until 23:59 on 28 February 2019. After that you will have to submit it as final, and you will not be able to modify it any longer.
Is there an alternative to submitting an entry online, e.g. by post/regular mail?
No, all submissions must be made via the online registration form.
How many names may be on each entry?
There can be only one leading administration (main contact) who applies for the prize, although the awards certificate will mention all participating administrations and one official representing each administration (with their consent).
I have several solutions I’d like to enter in the contest – is that possible?
Yes. One leading administration can enter several projects but only one per category. Please choose the one you consider the most successful for you.
How does it work in the case of a joint submission, i.e. if I’m submitting an entry on behalf of my and another public administration?
In the case of a shared project, there has to be a leading administration (first contact) that applies for the prize. The monetary award will be transferred to one administration only (to be selected amongst the applicants themselves) while certificates will be given to all participating administrations (one certificate for each participating administration). The certificates will also mention all leading officers of the project (maximum one per administration).
Can I enter a solution for consideration in more than one category?
No. Please choose the category your project was most successful in.
Can I submit an entry for a solution I did not personally work on, e.g. on behalf of another colleague?
Who is assessing the solutions?
- The eligibility assessment will be performed by the Sharing and Reuse Awards Team.
- The assessment against the evaluation criteria will be performed by an independent Evaluation Committee.
- The final selection will be performed by the Jury set up by the Commission.
What does the selection process involve?
To win the award, your solution will need to pass the three-step assessment:
- All applications received will first be reviewed by a Sharing and Reuse Award team and tested against the eligibility criteria.
- Evaluation Committee will assess the eligible applications against the evaluation criteria, rank them, and create a shortlist of the 32 best-ranked solutions.
- A Jury will make the final selection and agree on the ranking of the 16 leading solutions, choosing the two winners in each category and providing the ranking for the remaining solutions that will receive a certificate of excellence.
How will applications be assessed?
Participating solutions will be assessed against pre-defined criteria as follows:
- Solution design and governance: the extent to which open standards are used and/or complied with; the level of documentation for the solution and the quality of the design; level of cooperation, cross-border cooperation, collaboration between institutions, and identification of a governance model supporting the solution.
- Impact/extent of reuse: the business model of the solution; the realisation of planned objectives and activities; proven evidence of benefits (including savings established through reusing instead of developing from scratch); visible impact and tangible results; savings or results that could still be realised; number of reuse cases and detail of plans for ongoing future reuse effort; reuse of existing services of other organisations; reuse of application’s modules by other applications.
- Sustainability: extent to which the solution shows elements which allow it to be sustained after its objectives are achieved; extent to which the sustainability is guaranteed; technical documentation; business model documentation; maintenance; high availability.
- Innovation (for category 1 and 3): technological innovation; business process innovation; social Innovation.
- User-centricity (for category 2 and 4): accessibility to citizens; personalized data; personalized services; notifications; mobile devices.
When will the shortlist be announced?
If your solution has been shortlisted, you will be informed by the Commission via e-mail by 25 April 2019.
How and when will the Commission announce the winners?
The winners will be publicly announced at the Sharing & Reuse Conference to be held in June 2019 in Romania. This will be followed by a news article and tweets on Joinup and on several social media sites.
If I am nominated for an award, what are my obligations?
If you are a nominated for an award, you will be invited to participate in the Sharing & Reuse Award ceremony which will take place during the Sharing & Reuse conference. For this occasion, you will be asked to prepare a short presentation (maximum 4 minutes). In addition, you will be asked to prepare a longer version of the presentation (up to 20 slides) which will be published on Joinup. The templates and guidelines for the presentations will be provided in advance.
How will the winning organisation(s) receive their cash prizes?
The Commission will transfer the monetary prices to the bank account of the winning public administrations.
What if my organisation cannot accept a cash prize?
The award is given to administrations, not to natural persons (individuals). In the event that your organisation cannot accept a cash prize, this will be awarded to the next-best solution in the rankings. However, your administration will still receive an award certificate.
To whom should I direct questions?
For any questions please email: DIGIT-SR-AWARDS@ec.europa.eu
How will you use the information I give you?
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