Public procurement - Request participation in the competitive dialogue

Contracting authorities (contracting entities) may engage in a competitive dialogue above the EU-wide thresholds. This procedure is used to award particularly complex contracts. The contracting entity may conduct the competitive dialogue only if:

  • the order volume exceeds the specified threshold, and
  • it is objectively unable to:
    • indicate the technical means by which their needs and objectives can be met, or
    • indicate the legal and financial conditions of the project.

The contracting authority shall announce the procedure in special tender media throughout Europe. As an EU-wide call for tenders, it must publish it in the EU Official Journal. It shall set out its needs and requirements in the notice. It may provide explanations in the notice itself or by means of a retrievable description.

Related Links


You can find out which documents, samples or samples you need during the competitive dialogue from the awarding authority.


The submission of your application for participation is not subject to any requirements. It must comply with the substantive and formal requirements described in the notice.

Related Links

  • § 101 Act against Restraints of Competition (GWB) (types of award)
  • § 3a Procurement and Contract Regulations for Construction Services Part A (VOB/A)

You submit your application for participation in the competitive dialogue to the contracting authority. It must be received there 37 days after the dispatch of the notice.

The contracting entity shall invite the selected undertakings to negotiate the details of the contract. The dialogue can take place in different phases. These should build on each other with the aim of reducing and making easier to manage the number of solutions to be discussed in the dialogue phase. The contracting entity shall indicate the dialogue phases in the notice or in the description. If the contracting authority decides that a company should no longer participate in the next dialogue phase, it must inform it.

The competitive dialogue is open-ended. The contracting entity shall declare the dialogue closed if:

  • it is apparent that no solution can be found, or
  • a solution has been found that meets the needs of the contracting entity.

In both cases, the undertakings concerned shall be informed of the conclusion of the dialogue. Once a solution has been found, the contracting entity shall invite the companies still involved in the dialogue phase to submit a final tender. The offer is based on the solution submitted and discussed in the dialogue phase. The contracting authority examines the tenders and selects the most economical tender.

It may ask the selected company to re-explain details of the offer or to confirm commitments of the offer.

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