Socially Reponsible Public Procurement of ICT

Public authorities have the power to use procurement to create better working conditions and protect the rights of workers and communities by purchasing products that have been procured in a socially responsible manner.

The Procura+ Interest Group on Socially Responsible Public Procurement (SRPP) aims

  • to support public authorities in procuring information and communication technology (ICT) hardware products and
  • to foster the exchange on procurement activities as part of the Make ICT Fair Project.

With the expertise of Electronics Watch, Procura+ Network  and ICLEI Europe, procurement guidance including criteria and verfication schemes are being developed that consider social responsibility throughout the whole supply-chain of ICT products. These are applied by five pilot authorities: Greater London Authority (GLA), Region Stockholm, Barcelona City Council, Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges Scotland (APUC) , and Gemeente Haarlem.

Piloting Public Authorities


APUC - Scotland, UK

Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges (APUC) is an Electronics Watch Affiliate. The pilot authority has experience in integrating not only green but also criteria to achieve a socially responsible procurement. More specifically, the consortium supports various universities and colleges across Scotland to implement sustainable public procurement.

Pilot case: Framework agreement for supply, design, and installation of energy efficient audio-visual equipment, awarded in 2018.

Estimated value for the framework agreement: £15 million pounds per annum. 

How to engage the market - step by step guide for market dialogue events

Barcelona - Catalonia, Spain

Barcelona City Council is both Procura+ Participant and Electronics Watch Affiliate. This pilot authority went through the process of integrating selected criteria, clauses and specifications for social responsibility in a tender of datacenters during Spring/Summer 2019.

The respective Meet the Buyer Event took place 27th February 2019 in Barcelona.

"I was pleasantly surprised at the interest shown by the suppliers and companies. It shows that it really is a topical issue. It is a good time to move forward”
- Carla Canal Rosich, Barcelona City Council

How to engage the market - an overview of the European legal framework

Haarlem - The Netherlands

The City of Haarlem is another pilot authority of the project. In Spring 2019 a restricted tender on workplace hardware will be published. This means the procurement is divided in two rounds. One round for selecting a few interested parties and one round to select the best offer. The criteria and clauses of the tender will include social responsibility with the aim to go beyond previous efforts.

How to procure fair ICT hardware

Stavanger - Norway

The Municipality of Stavanger is aware of its social responsibility as a procuring authority, and is a long-time member of Ethical Trade Norway. Since 2009, Stavanger has an action plan for ethical trade which is part of the municipality's procurement strategy. The action plan is regularly revised and contributes to an increased quality of procurements, ensuring that they are performed in a sustainable, resource efficient and non-discriminatory way.

An introduction to Make ICT Fair - EN

Stockholm - Sweden

The Region of Stockholm is also an Affiliate to Electronics Watch. In the past, the pioneering authority has advanced social responsibility criteria and clauses into multiple tenders. As a result the authority holds significant experience, especially when it comes to contract management.

London - UK

The Greater London Authority (GLA) is both Electronics Watch Affiliate and Procura+ Participant. As strategic regional authority it holds powers over transport, policing, economic development and fire and emergency planning. The GLA Group spends around £11billion on its procurement activities every year. As part of Make ICT Fair the GLA organised a supplier engagement event.

Make ICT Fair - einleitendes Leaflet - DE

Meet the Buyer Event Series

The Make ICT Fair Meet the Buyer - Series brings together public procurers and suppliers in the field of ICT from all over Europe or in a local context to discuss upcoming tenders that aim to pioneer social responsibility and transparency in supply chains.

The event series aims to (1) inform about social responsibility in ICT procurement processes; (2) give space to present the upcoming tender as well as good practice examples for socially responsible procurement of ICT products; (3) facilitate the exchange between the public authority and potential suppliers and resellers with regards to their needs and capacities, respectively.



Conferences, Workshops & other events

Aim of the Make ICT Fair project is to exchange on the topics of socially responsible procurement, ICT hardware, supply-chains starting at mining of raw materials.

Make ICT Fair - Meet the Buyer



The Electronics Watch Annual Conference, 4th December, Barcelona, Spain

More information

Conference on Fair and Circular ICT, 9th December, Ghent, Belgium

More information

Fair Begegnen, Fair Gestalten, 18-20 September, Cologne

More information

7th conference on socially responsible procurement of IT products - Leipzig, 9&10th May 2019

More information

Project Partners

Swedwatch (Sweden)

Südwind (Austria)

Catapa (Belgium)

Electronics Watch (Europe-wide)

People & Planet (UK)

Setem (Catalunya)

University of Edinburgh (UK) 

Bankwatch Network (Central & Eastern Europe)



Legal disclaimer

This project has received funding from the European Union’s EuropeAid programme under grant agreement CSO-LA12017/388-226.The sole responsibility for any error or omissions lies with the editor. The content does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Commission. The European Commission is also not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained herein.

The criteria and verification schemes presented on this webpage have been drafted on the basis of research on verification schemes as well as on procurement legislation and practices across Europe. However, no legal guarantee can be given by the authors. The authors does not take any liability whatsoever for the use of the information provided.