Telecities is a trans-European initiative endorsed by the European Commission in the Fourth Framework Programme in the field of telematics applications in urban and rural areas. It aims to promote and develop telematics applications which support the regeneration of urban areas through economic and social progress. The budget available for telematics projects in urban and rural areas is about ECU 50 million. The demand for urban telematics covers several sectors from the telematics programme such as healthcare, education, training, transport and libraries. It is anticipated that about ECU 150 million will be made available by the Commission for cross-sector integration and validation projects through the concept of Telematics Application Sites. A first call for proposals is expected to be launched by the Commission on 15 December 1994, with a closing date of 15 March 1995. A second call should be launched in September 1995 and a third in September 1996. The steering committee of Telecities, elected in April 1994, submitted a proposal for funding to the European Commission, DG XIII, in June 1994 which has now been approved. The action started formally on 1 October 1994. The duration of this action is one year and the total budget is ECU 973,500. The funding is provided partly by DG XIII (ECU 700,000), and partly by the steering committee members, Eurocities, and membership fees (ECU 273,500). Today Telecities membership is open to all European cities and towns regardless of size. Any city, upon becoming a member, can take steps, by means of telematics applications, to influence urban policy-making related to economic and social issues.