Last 25th of September DEV&CO19 took place in Paris. This event is the Forum of Attractivity and Economic Development Professionals, and it was organised by CNER, the French Federation of Investment and Economic Development Agencies. Most of the participants and speakers were from French development agencies, nonetheless, there was also external representation: Agencia IDEA from Andalusia (Spain); Foro ADR, from Spain; Helsinki Business Hub, from Finland; and EURADA.

The event started at 9 AM with the presentations of some experts and outstanding personalities from the field of economics. The topics spoken about in the presentations were current affairs and actions undertaken and their successes within the performance, economic development and innovation framework. Among others, the speakers were Antoine Angeard, Director of CNER, and Esteban Pelayo with a pitch about OaSIS project.

The workshops taking place in the event are the following:

  • Quelles règles pour mieux prospecter à l’international? (What are the rules for a better international prospection?): In this workshop, different actions conducted by agencies were presented. Elena Gallego, from Agencia IDEA (Andalusia, Spain), presented their experience and way of working. Sarah Russis, from The Financial Times, presented their tool of geographical information facilitating inversion attraction;
  • Comment attirer des talents performants sur le territoire? (How to attract effective talents within a territory?): In this workshop, successful practices of Latitude Manche (Benjamin Tetard) and Helsinki Business Hub (Nisha Yadav) were presented with their particular nuances and differences between France and Finland;
  • Comment des infrastructures performantes contribuent-elles à l’attractivité du territoire ? (How do effective infrastructures contribute to the territory attractiveness?): Infrastructures are also a key element to improve attractiveness, since they also structure territories. Vincent Gollain et Michel Savy talked about how a territory can be benefited by their infrastructures to attract new activities and their associated purposes;
  • Qu’est-ce qu’un événement performant? (What is an effective action?): This workshop was about how to optimize the fallouts of an event, having in mind the economic, environmental and social dimensions. Véronique Besse and Nicolas Lizart talked about how territories are trying to organise their own actions to get benefits.

The last part of the event consisted of the introduction of the tool Sindup. This economic intelligence tool is used for surveillance and anticipation, applied in the territorial economic development field. In this talk, most of the development agencies representatives admitted using tools of this kind or, in case of not using them, admitted keeping surveillance of these aspects in alternative ways.

Before the closing of the event, the Director of AirBnB France and Belgium, Emmanuel Marill, presented their business model and explained the future challenges they will have to face regarding territorial and peripheral development and attractiveness. He also talked about the opportunity of territories that are not touristic destinations per se but that have a lot to offer.

To close the event, François Brottes, Director of RTE (Réseau de Transport d’Electricité), represented his network and talked about taking advantage of the quality of the electrical infrastructure to reinforce the attractiveness and competitiveness of territories.

DEV&CO was a great opportunity to get to know innovative solutions applied in the French territorial development field. It was also a chance to get to know closely how French development agencies work and which positive elements one can take from them.