all finalists
are created equal.

The Criteria

formal criteria

Projects must meet all of the following formal criteria to be accepted for entry. The fulfillment of these criteria will be assessed by our Expert Group.


council of europe country

Projects are accepted from politicians at all political levels (european, national, regional and local) in all member countries of the Council of Europe (CoE)..


politician(s) involved

A politician or a group of politicians must have played a key role in making the project possible. This includes elected and appointed representatives at all levels of government in all co-member countries who were active at the time the project started.


taxpayers’ money

The project must have been financed, at least partially, with public funds.


substantial impact

Each project must have had a tangible and material impact on the lives of at least 1,000 citizens living in one or more coe member countries. This means that pure communication campaigns, events, scientific studies and analyses, as well as projects at the planning stage, are not admissible.


max. five years old

Projects publicly launched on or after
1 january 2012
on will be accepted for the 2017 awards.


respect for human rights

projects that diminish the values expressed in the universal declaration of human rights in any way will be excluded.

substantial criteria

The Jury will score all projects by assessing the fulfilment of the following substantial criteria. For scoring purposes, innovation is valued at 50 % of the total. The other five criteria count for 10 % each.



To be considered for an award, a project must show, first and foremost, an innovative character, breaking new ground while meeting a challenge in its sphere of influence (municipality, region, country).
The innovation need not be a “world first”. What counts is a new approach in the country or region where the project was realised, and skilful adaptation to the local culture and needs.
In addition to innovation, a project must meet at least one of the following five criteria:



Motivating citizens to participate in an extensive or special way


building trust

Strengthening trust in democratic processes and institutions


bridge building

Bringing together people from different parts of society or with different political views



Creating lasting improvements in the lives of all those affected


financial viability

Achieving a high output in relation to the financial input