Category: Dijon and Burgundy in Europe


  • Its creation and its role

At the beginning, there was a group called “Le Grand-Est” which gathered 5 regions. But over time, a separation occurred: Lorraine and Champagne-Ardennes on the one hand, Bourgogne and Franche-Comté on the other hand, are gathered together whereas Alsace is now alone. The goal of this gathering was to reduce the costs. The office is currently financed by collectivities and public money. Moreover Bourgogne and Franche Comté are two regions which are very similar economically and socially speaking. Nowadays, every European region is represented in Brussels.

The role of this type of office is to do the link between the regions and Brussels on what’s happening in political and economic fields.

  • The Team

The Office is made up of 4 people. (3 permanent people and one trainee). It was created by the two regions as an association. Altogether there are 15 members in that association, like for example the “Conseil Régional”, the “Grand Dijon” and also towns like Macon, Châlon etc.

  • A typical day in this office

There are often delegations that come to exchange about an issue. So the office has to organize meetings with European interlocutors (like a group of regions) to discuss a topic. For example, a meeting can lead to the creation of an association.

The regions can also react about a subject, or register for a project, influence a bill.

The office has to be able to help a region or an association to fill or to improve a founding requests, for instance for a festival, for researches, energy, youth, transports etc. To put it in a nutshell, they have to ensure the quality of a project.

The way they work is called “Lobying”. It’s how things get sorted out in Brussels. It is an activity in which a structure decides to show an interest to a policy-maker. Lobbies can be found everywhere in Brussels. What really matters is the argumentation, the strength of the message and the other’s support.

  • An example of plan

Currently, there is a plan about the “Amical Bourgogne des sports”, which is an association that organizes sport meeting especially in Germany. But they would like to act on a European scale. So they would like to have some tips to reformulate and submit their project to the commission in October.

  • The recruitment

The recruitment is based on the acquaintances about European institutions but also on the time spent abroad. Indeed it is essential to have good linguistic skills (even if the English which is spoken in Brussels is not a perfect English, but it must sufficient to make oneself understood) and capacities to evolve in an environment that one doesn’t know.

Dijon and its suburbs « Grand Dijon » took part in 2009, in three European cooperation projects concerning priorities for the Dijon area , namely the fight against global warming, the development of urban transports and rail high speed lines.

Dijon got involved in the European movement to promote sustainable energies. It took place in Brussels , on Tuesday, Feb. 10th, 2009. Dijon municipality is involved in the project entitled ” Covenant of Mayors .” This agreement has been, so far, the most ambitious to encourage local authorities and citizens to go beyond the EU energy and climate objectives. The local communities involved in this project, will put all their resources in place to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to promote renewable energies. They hope this decrease will reach 20% in 2020.

For the city of Dijon , being a member of this European project, is a great opportunity concerning the policy of sustainable development and urban ecology . Nevertheless, thanks to their membership, the city of Dijon will benefit from technical assistance and financial support from the European Commission in the development of their future projects.

 A European reform : the high speed line and the tramway in Dijon.

As you know, “united we stand, divided we fall”. This proverb could apply to the tramway in Dijon. Indeed, this project was the result of a fruitful cooperation between the Burgundy Council and Europe.

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Let us explain to you…

Dijon agglomeration was involved in a project that is called TramStore21 . The European expert assessment helped the establishment of a tram line in « Grand Dijon ». Many communities were involved in this project, such as Brussels (Belgium) , Blackpool ( Great Britain) and Rotterdam ( Netherlands) .

This approach is also part of the European Interreg program. The aim was to create sustainable deposits, to find solutions in terms of innovation.

The impacts on the inhabitants of the city concerning the tramway line, and also the building materials and the work management were the different axes which have been put in place.

However, Dijon took part  in a European project which aimed at creating a TGV station in town. This project, supported by the Italian partner of the city of Dijon, Reggio nell’Emilia , aimed at enabling public organizations , and especially for local authority partners , to analyze the economic, social , cultural and environmental consequences of the host a high-speed railway station in the city. This initiative was directed with other communities in order to host a train station. These cities were Ciudad Real ( Spain) , Valladolid (Spain) , Ulm (Germany) , Rogaland (Norway), Radom (Poland) and the Universities of Ferrara (Italy) and Warsaw (Poland). To do this, a co-financing Interreg Community program was asked .

This project enables the city to continue its efforts for the progressive implementation of the high-speed line Rhine -Rhône and the creation of the high speed train station at Porte -Neuve in 2020-2025 .

To conclude !

Finally, the involvement of Grand Dijon in these projects, supports sustainable development policies in Europe because it will influence as many cities as possible to invest themselves in  similar European projects , in order to save the environment and our Earth.

Before we get it all started, let us say how proud we are to be Burgundians.

Burgundy is a small region of the North East of France. More precisely, it’s between the Paris Basin and the Saône Valley. It has a strong tradition: for a long time, Burgundy has benefited  from its rich soil, and more particularly of its pretigious vineyards that have made it famous worldwide. It is well known for its production of mustard, snails, all of its huge agricultural areas. It has a history : the Dukes of Burgundy are known all over France for being the closest opponents to the King during the XVth century.

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The land of Burgundy is composed of four departments  Yonne, Côte d’Or, Saône et Loire and Nièvre. All of them are really diversified, and rich of their diversity. By crossing the region, you can go from the limestone plateaux of Yonne to the rural areas of the Morvan, from the groves of Charolais to the plains of Saône and the vineyards of Mâcon. In the heart of Europe, Burgundy is crossed by a huge network of roads, railways, and it is truly a European crossroad, a land of welcome and passage.

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Dijon, the capital of Burgundy, concentrates, with its metropolitan area, almost half of the population of Côte d’Or !Its activities are mostly turned to  services and wine growing. It is very different from the wide rural areas of the Morvan, that are lowly populated.

Well, that’s all we can say about Burgundy without boring you, readers. Thanks for reading us, please leave some comments !