The i.lab is Barcelona's way of accelerating sustainable and social urban innovation.

Its goals are:

  • To offer the most appropriate answers to the new challenges and demands facing the city and its citizens, through the i.lab laboratory.

  • To promote the ethical and responsible use of data and technology.
  • To improve sustainability and ensure that as many people and organisations as possible benefit from the solutions.
  • To stimulate urban innovation in a collaborative, open way, as well as fostering collaboration between public, private, social and academic sectors.
  • To promote open exchange with other cities.


Definition of the challenges

i.lab brings together various stakeholders to define challenges and establish the partnerships needed to develop projects.


Call for participation

The challenge is outlined to relevant players and the public using concise messages on the most effective online and offline channels.

Assessment of solutions

Experts assess the solutions put forward, employing a methodical deliberation process to finally choose the winners.

Presentation of the winners

The winning solutions are publicly presented, making the project and its participants more visible to others.


i.lab oversees the roll-out of pilot innovation projects with different areas at the City Council and municipal bodies.



Successfully developed projects can be built into innovative public procurement processes and rolled out on the market.

Benefits of the i.lab

For the city residents


  • Improved satisfaction of their real needs.
  • Inclusion of innovative assets or services in order to improve public services.

For businesses


  • Offering contacts and collaboration with the innovation ecosystem.
  • Accelerating urban innovation.
  • This is a platform for developing and testing solutions.
  • Offering potential for showcasing and deploying projects in both the city and on an international scale.

For universities and research centres


  • Promoting technological innovation at the service of the general public.
  • Enabling participation in the process of project definition.
  • Favouring collaboration with other stakeholders.

For Public Administration


  • Structuring and promoting innovation centred on the values of social, environmental and technological sustainability.
  • Combining innovation with economic and technical efficiency.
  • Promoting an internal cultural change.
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