Circular Cities ClimAccelerator AthensBerlinCopenhagenDublin

Looking to accelerate your start-up and impact?

15 Start-ups Selected

Why Cities Need Your Ideas?

Cities are major contributors to climate change, material consumption and waste generation, with the potential to be cradles of innovation and transformation.

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of citizens in the European Union live in urban areas, meaning cities are at the heart of economic, social, and environmental impact.

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of global waste and 60%-80% of greenhouse gas emissions are produced by cities.

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increase in EU GDP can be achieved by 2030 using circular economy principles, creating 700,000 new jobs.

Cities are ready to shift from the linear economy model to a circular economy model in order to tackle climate change and reduce their emissions.

Main Circular Economy Principles

Design out of waste and pollution

Keep products and materials in use

Reduce energy and resources use

The circular economy is an economic model that is restorative and regenerative by design. The circular economy stems from the realisation that Earth is a finite system constrained by planetary boundaries. Ultimately in nature the concept of waste does not exist – everything is transformed into a resource that can be utilised.


The circular economy aims to keep materials, components, and products in-use in the economy for as long as possible. In circularity, the key objective is to design consumption and production systems to create and retain value.


Circularity seeks to optimise every aspect of a product’s lifecycle from raw material extraction to manufacturing and first use, and multiple use-lives thereafter, through product re-design, new business models and novel technologies and processes.

Our Offer

Circular Cities ClimAccelerator is an accelerator program for advanced team startups working on innovative solutions in the field of circular economy. We provide financial support as well as know-how and coaching, mentoring and peer-to-peer learning opportunities. Our goal is to support start-up cities towards Europe’s 2030 circular economy transition.  



We support driven-demand solutions!



Our accelerator supports demand-driven solutions that respond to the current problems of our partner cities: Berlin, Dublin, Athens, and Copenhagen. Startups will have the chance to develop further their solutions not only with city stakeholders, but also with community-driven innovation and corporate partners. The programme will be run online, free of charge and in English.

Stage 1

  • Duration: approx. 4 weeks starting at the beginning of September 21st, 2021. 
  • Startups teams: we will support between 15-20 startup teams
  • Financial support: 2.500 Euros per team

Stage 2

  • Duration: approx. 6-8 weeks 
  • Startups teams: we will support 10 startups teams out of the initial group.
  • Financial support: 10.000 Euros per team. This support is subject to a SFEA.

During 2021, we are piloting the first cohort of Circular Cities ClimAccelerator, however, we are envisioning expanding our programme for the next 3 years to be able to support more start-up teams across Europe.


Circular Cities ClimAccelerator “Services-for-Equity (SFEA)


Further to all other benefits of the ClimAccelerator programme, those companies selected to progress to Stage 2 of the accelerator will receive investment from EIT Climate-KIC. This investment is in the form of a services-for-equity agreement and is structured as convertible security* with a value of between EUR 75,000 and EUR 100,000 (similar to a SAFE note or Advanced Subscription Agreement).

As part of this agreement, EIT Climate-KIC will provide services including:

  • Fundraising support and connections to our network of investors;
  • Carbon Impact Forecasting and validation;
  • EU Policy support and connection to (funding) opportunities;
  • Connecting start-ups to corporates and partners within the EIT Climate-KIC network.

The standard terms of this agreement are: no valuation cap; a 20% discount; a 24-month longstop date** and zero interest.

* This instrument is not a convertible loan, meaning no debt or liabilities will be recorded on your balance sheet.

** Longstop date: This is the deadline for the convertible trigger event to occur. If the conversion does not occur on or before this date, the conversion will happen at the pre-agreed floor price.

Who We Are

The Circular Cities ClimAccelerator is a public-private initiative comprising Climate-KIC, Trinity College Dublin, Luvent Consulting and Danmarks Teknikske Universitet (DTU). Our city partners include Berlin Senat, Dublin City Council and Athens City Council. UPS (United Parcel Services) is our corporate partner. Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace powered by Trinity College Dublin, Luvent Consulting and DTU are the implementation partners.

Frequently Asked Question

Start-ups and businesses that ideally are revenue generating and scaling to – develop their solutions such that they can help make a systemic impact on our economy and consumer behaviour and drive Europe’s transition to net-zero carbon circular economy.



The period for the submission of applications will begin on 24 August 2021 and end at 00:00 CEST on 12 September 2021.

Opening Call

24 August 2021

Closing Call

12 September 2021

Open Day

6 September 2021

Online Pitch Day

15 September 2021

Stage 1 start

23 September 2021

Stage 2 start


Demo Day

Around 10th December 2021

Eligibility Criteria

Business Stage

Startups teams with advanced business models, MVP, and company registered in Europe. Your company does not need to be exclusively registered in one of our partner cities.

Market Scalability

Your business solution is scalable to large markets, particularly our partner cities.


Your startup team should have a minimum of 2 founders, which together hold at least 75% of equity and are committed to working full-time on their venture. The startup should have a legal entity formed, but it cannot be older than 5 years.

Circular Economy Focus

Your solution includes circular economy principles, such as: design out waste and pollution, keep products and material in use and reduce energy and resources use, in cities areas like mobility as a service, circular construction, textile and fashion, food waste, etc.

Social and Economic Impact

You want to contribute to Europe’s 2030 circular economy transition as well as creating a better quality of jobs.

Partner Overview

Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin,  is uniquely positioned to deliver on this great initiative, Tangent has successfully delivered a number of EIT Climate. KIC and EIT Digital Health accelerator and incubator initiatives in recent years, as well as a suite of certified and professional innovation programmes for students, academics and corporate audiences. Tangent is currently managing a 36 month New Ventures initiative for the Irish Manufactuing Research Centre (IMR) as part of their Climate KIC supported ‘Circuléire’ initiative. We have also just completed the first of 3 iterations of ‘Alssesor’, the AI Accelerator. Tangent is Informed by research and international best practice and our programmes are engaging, interactive and experiential.

The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) has one of the most well-developed ecosystems for innovation and entrepreneurship among technical universities in Europe. This ecosystems helps bringing new ideas and inventions from the classrooms and research laboratories at DTU into the real world, where they can create new jobs and help solve tasks and challenges in society. DTU further developed a well founded framework for Sustainability Impact Assessment for Circular Economy applicable to circular cities solutions. Other stakeholders in the Meridian Accelerator include UPS, the international Courier and Logistics company, Berlin Senat, Dublin City Council and Athens City Council.

Luvent Consulting, an EIT Climate KIC partner, is a global consultancy committed to providing innovative solutions to the challenges of economic, social and climate transformation. We specialise in implementing solutions at the intersection of climate change and innovation, applying holistic and integrative approaches involving a wide range of stakeholders. We have a powerful global support network with a track record of implementing public and private sector projects in over 70 countries through our dynamic ecosystem of partners and specialists.

© 2021 Luvent Consulting GmbH / Trinity College Dublin / Technical University of Denmark