Because cities are always stronger when they act together, Nantes is deeply committed in and to Europe and international relations. Nantes takes part in European and international networks:
- Nantes is an active player in the Eurocities network since 1997. Its Mayor, Johanna Rolland, takes over from Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz, mayor of Warsaw as Eurocities president since November 7th, 2014.
- Nantes is a member of the executive committee of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (AFCCRE/CEMR) and the United Cities and Local Governments network (UCLG).
- Alongside its local public companies, Nantes takes part in the European Centre of Enterprises with Public Participation (CEEP).
Alongside this involvement in networks, Nantes has strategic partnerships with other metropolises, involving local players. In Quebec, Nantes relies on an International Volunteer, who raises the profile of the city on the other side of the Atlantic, pinpoints collaboration opportunities and supports the local players' projects.
In its European and international relations, Nantes focuses on strategic issues shared with other metropolises: social cohesion and local public service, innovation, employment, young people, culture, higher education/research and more.
The aims of are as follows:
- work in synergy with other metropolis to influence European and international decision-making processes
- get inspired by other metropolis' best practices to innovate in our public policies and public services
- bolster the local area's appeal and its economic development
As such, Nantes is playing a proactive role in combating climate change and chairs, at international level, the Climate working group (created with Manaus, Dakar and Durban) as part of the United Cities and Local Governments network (UCLG). Nantes therefore takes part in United Nations climate talks and represents local authorities at the annual Conference Of the Parties (COP).
With the local area, Nantes aims to provide a European and international citizen route for everyone, with the introduction of citizen debates on European and international issues and initiatives for supporting Nantes inhabitants' projects in Europe and internationally.
A few examples:
- Annual meetings in Nantes about public services, providing an opportunity to debate the issue of public services in Europe by contrasting the viewpoints of citizens, local players and European decision-makers alike.
- The Nantes Creative Generations initiative enables Nantes inhabitants and young Europeans aged between 18 and 30 with innovative citizen projects to meet and discuss issues with a view to giving a European dimension to their initiatives.
As a city with real creative energy, Nantes organises and hosts several European and international events, cultural events, major sports events and business events.
Nantes is also well known for playing host to top-level sporting events. As the leading city in France with 30 top-level and 7 professional clubs, Nantes loves sport! Nantes has already played host to the 1998 FIFA World Cup, the 2007 Rugby World Cup, the 2007 World Women's Handball Championship, the 2008 Tour de France as well as the 2013 Top 14 rugby final and is set to play host to the Nantes International Championship (Handball) in 2015. In 2017, Nantes will host the World Men's Handball Championship.
Business events with international reach reflect the diversity of Nantes, with, for example, the France meeting hub, the European learning forum, the Velocity world summit and the European planetary science congress, amongst others.