Project name

SUSTAIN – cluSter bUilding SmarT reAdiness INdicators

Project aim and description

The severe consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic in the building construction sector brought to light other emerging challenges that existed pro COVID. The limited adaptation to technology and related innovation frameworks in the building construction domain had a significant negative effect to the involved stakeholders. With SUSTAIN we want to change the existing situation and make the EU market on building construction domain to be more resilient and independent to any future similar situations as Covid-19.


  1. Boost the market of building construction by developing a wide network of related clusters and SMEs in order to minimize the effect of the Covid-19 crisis;
  2. Address the strategic dependencies, both technological and industrial in the field of building construction sector and enhance the EU’s open strategic autonomy, by promoting innovative services and training SMEs to adopt these services ;
  3. Focus on the green and digital transition for companies related in the market of building sector, by promoting innovative solutions related to buildings’ energy efficiency and smartness

Concerning the third point, SUSTAIN will focus on introducing an innovative digital tool that assess the buildings Smart Readiness Indicator (SRI) using Building Information Modelling (BIM) technologies. Furthermore, it is within the scope of SUSTAIN to couple this tool with Building Management Systems (BMSs).

Project objectives & activities

Obj.1 : Networking for the improvement of the resilience of the EU industrial ecosystems. This will be the leading objective of the proposal and it includes activities for the networking of related actors in the field of buildings’ construction with specialization to smart and zero energy buildings. The project will implement actions for designing and building new collaboration models between European cluster organisations and other key actors facilitating value chain interlinkages along and across different industrial ecosystems with a view of having resilience preparedness/business continuity plans.

Obj.2 : Innovation in build capacity for strategic autonomy in the build construction domain. SUSTAIN will support companies, in particular SMEs, in a business innovation by introducing on the market or bringing into use by the companies a new or improved product or business process (or combination thereof) that differs significantly from the firm’s previous products or business processes and that contributes to the strategic autonomy of the EU industrial ecosystems as well as that of supported companies.

Obj.3 : Adopt processes and technologies to reinforce transformation into a greener and more digital economy. During the project process and technologies will be proposed, that improve the value chains’ efficiency in the use of resources, open markets for green technologies and services and uptake of digital solutions. SUSTAIN will prepare and help businesses to adopt advanced technologies, e.g. Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence

Obj.4 : Train to foster up- and re-skilling of the workforce whilst attracting talents.

SUSTAIN will implement actions for fostering clusters’ skills capacity-building and to promote cross-cluster learning in order to help cluster managers, cluster organisations and their members to acquire the necessary skills and take actions to explore and take up innovative solutions related to buildings’ energy efficiency and smartness

Obj.5 : Open to international market.

SUSTAIN will support the international cooperation with public and private organizations in third parties. A joint internationalisation strategy will be implemented in order to support SME internationalisation towards third countries beyond Europe, and sign collaboration agreements with entities in third countries.

Obj.6 : Dissemination of SUSTAIN results.

Project partners

  • The Centre for Research and Technology Hellas CERTH (Greece)
  • Green-Tech Cluster (Latvia)
  • CEEC Clúster de l’Energia Eficient de Catalunya (Spain)

Project duration

September 2022 – September 2025 (36 months)

Project budget:

1 398 983.10 EUR

Open calls

SUSTAIN Eurocluster Open Digital Platform  is up and running, and potential applicants can already register and start preparing their applications. Detailed guidelines for applicants are available on the registration website or by clicking here.

The purpose of these Open Calls is to help Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) address the Smart Building challenges and adopt the most advanced processes and technologies in the field. With this financial support, SMEs will be able to develop new products, services or methods in the Construction sector and foster innovation within their organisations.

Digital platform for registration
Detailed guidelines
1st Open Call – SUSTAIN Innovation support experiments (Gold Awards)
Launch of the 1st Open Call 01/09/2023
Deadline of the 1st Open Call 01/11/2023
Evaluation of applications until 31/12/2023
Announcement of the beneficiaries 02/01/2024
Contracting of the Sub-Grant Agreements 31/01/2024
Start date of sub-projects 01/02/2024
End date of sub-projects 31/10/2024
Total duration of the experiment 9 months

Eligible partners

The SUSTAIN Open Call is addressed only to legally established and registered SMEs (including start-ups), according to the criteria set by the EU as defined in the EU Recommendation 2003/361).

  • Beneficiaries can apply for the Open Call as a consortium or individually.
  • Beneficiaries must be legally established at least 6 months before submission deadline.
  • For projects with a consortium of several eligible beneficiaries, one SME must be defined as “Coordinator” and this SME will lead the team throughout the whole project

Eligible countries

Each beneficiary must be an SME established or having a branch office in the SUSTAIN territorial scope, described as follows:

  • 27 EU Member States
  • non-EU countries: listed EEA countries and countries associated to the COSME part of the Single Market Programme or countries which are in ongoing negotiations for an association agreement and where the agreement enters into force before grant signature (list of participating countries)
  • SMEs from EU Regions different from the countries of SUSTAIN partners (Greece, Latvia, Spain) are strongly encouraged to submit their proposals.

Type of activities

Open Calls is adapted to two levels of technology readiness:

Innovation support [TRL 4-6] and Go-to-Market support [TRL 7-8], according to the degree of readiness of the solution to be developed

Open Call Schemes INNOVATION SUPPORT (Gold Awards) GO-TO-MARKET SUPPORT (Silver Awards)
Targeted TRL 4 – 6 TRL 7-8 TRL
Applicants One or more SMEs acting as technology providers for smart building construction    
Maximum Budget per Proposal 50 000 € 30 000 €
Type of financial support LUMP SUM Applicants propose the amount of the lump sum contribution on the basis of their estimated costs. The lump sum is fixed during grant preparation.
Total Allocated Budget 600 000 € 450 000 €
Estimated number of projects that will receive financial support 12 projects 15 projects
Project (max) duration 9 months 6 months
Total budget available 1 050 000 €

Eligible costs

  • Direct staff costs (personnel): cost of the “human effort” related to the staff working in the development of the project. The total work hours dedicated to each work package must be also indicated in the Application Form.
  • Subcontracting costs (external expertise): work carried out by an external provider which has entered into an agreement on business conditions with the beneficiary. Subcontracting costs are allowed, but they cannot exceed 30% of each individual SMEs budget.
  • Purchasing costs: travel and subsistence, equipment, consumables, publication costs, dissemination actions, networking activities, other goods, works and services. Purchases or provision of paid services between consortium partners is not eligible.

For all applicants, it is mandatory to include the following costs in the proposed budget:

Innovation support Actions (Gold Awards):

  • Minimum 4.000 € for travel costs for mobility actions and networking activities that will take place during the SUSTAIN project.
  • Minimum 2.000 € for publication costs (paper or conference presentation).

Topics of possible innovations of the “SUSTAIN” project Open Calls

The proposed projects must be aligned with at least one of the following topics (in case of selecting more than one topic, the applicant has to mention which one is the main topic):

  1. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  2. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality (AR/VR)
  3. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Building Information Modelling (BIM)
  4. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs)
  5. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Building Energy Management System (BEMS)
  6. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Internet of Things (IoT)
  7. Smart Readiness Indicators (SRI) coupled with Methodologies and Tools to Support Positive Energy Buildings (PEB) Construction/Renovation

Submission procedure

Each SME can be coordinator or participant only in one proposal under each call (1st and 2nd call) of proposals. In case of multiple participation of the same SME in each call, all applications including this SME will be rejected.

Please, pay attention that in total for both calls, one SME cannot receive more than 60.000 Euros sub-grant.

 All applications will be made through Sustain’s digital platform and applications must be in English.

Detailed guidelines

Visi pieteikumi tiks reģistrēti izmantojot Sustain digitālo platformu, un tiem ir jābūt rakstītiem angļu valodā.

Digital platform for registration

SMEs must apply via the following link:

Only proposals that will be submitted through the online submission tool within the deadline (November 1st 2023 @17.00 CEST for 1st Open Call) will be evaluated.

The project is implemented with the support of the European cluster cooperation platform Euroclusters. The European Union is not responsible for the content of the website.