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Meet the New European Capital of Innovation 2019: Nantes

News The European Commission recently announced the new city that will possess the honorable title of the European Capital of Innovation. This is Nantes, a city in north-west France. As the Commission mentioned, Nantes had got this honorable title for its efforts to use innovations to make the lives of its citizens easier and for the new collaborative governance model.

This fact will surely make Nantes a more attractive destination for both domestic and international travelers, and not only hotels in Nantes but also local businesses will benefit from this fact. The European Commission regularly gives different titles to cities in the region to draw attention to them and boost local economy. This time, the title of “the Capital of Innovation” comes with a cash prize of 1 million euro. Horizon 2020, the research and innovation program of the EU, is the sponsor of this award. In order to win, Nantes had to compete with such strong contestants as Bristol (the UK), Antwerp (Belgium), Glasgow (the UK), Rotterdam (the Netherlands), and Espoo (Finland). Each of these cities got a cash prize of 100,000 euro.

The global aim of this program is to show how cities can use innovation to control such important processes as sustainability, governance, and urban resilience. Nantes is a great example of a modern city that efficiently addresses challenges of our time, such as aging population, social inclusion, sustainability, and energy efficiency. Nantes is only the fifth European city that receives this award and the second non-capital (after Barcelona). Perhaps, many tourists will now want to visit this special city, so Nantes hotels should be ready for a blast.

Here are some of the flagship projects by the city. ‘Great Debates’ is a relatively new initiative that has already involved more than 55,000 participants into the discussion of such important aspects as energy transition, resulting in a range of important decisions. ‘Nantes City Lab’ tests new solutions in real life. For example, it worked with a project of 3D printed social houses that could be installed in just 3 days.

’15 places to be reinvented’ is an efficient method of collecting ideas of citizens and their proposals of making the city more sustainable. ‘Eco-innovation factory’ project tests collecting biowaste from a range of organizations using bicycle trailers. ‘Nantes French Tech Capital’ helps local startups and talents.


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