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17 IOPD Award Best Practice in Citizen Participation

European Citizens' Initiative: "Let's ask Europe to give migrants a decent welcome"

City of Rennes and Rennes Métropole, France

Number of the inhabitants

462 580 inhabitants (Rennes Métropole)

Promoting entity

Ville de Rennes et Rennes Métropole


july 2021 - ongoing

Type of experience

Voting / Referendum Citizens' initiatives / Legislative initiatives

Territorial scope

Local District

Thematic area

Governance Education Culture Training/preparation Legal standards Social inclusion


SDG 1 SDG 3 SDG 4 SDG 10 SDG 11 SDG 17

Objective of the experience

  • Integrating diversity as a criterion for inclusion
  • Strengthening unorganised citizenship
  • Improving public policy through the active participation of local residents


Rennes, the capital of Brittany, is known for its cultural dynamism, strong commitment to participatory democracy, and warm reception of displaced individuals. Under the leadership of Mayor Nathalie Appéré, the City and Metropolis of Rennes have launched a groundbreaking European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) aiming to advocate for dignified reception of migrants in Europe.

This initiative, born out of an inclusive dialogue process involving around 300 Rennes residents, has been championed by an organising group representing seven European states. This innovative endeavour, supported by various associations, students, and academic actors, showcases Rennes' profound commitment to European-scale citizen participation, highlighting the ability of citizens to influence community policies.

The project, rooted in Rennes' Labo Europe, is part of a broader initiative known as the Fabrique citoyenne, which brings together various citizen participation initiatives. Through awareness activities and online consultations, the Rennes community has shown overwhelming support for this ECI focused on the humane reception of migrants. This unique experience demonstrates Rennes' willingness to empower its residents to champion causes that matter to them within European institutions, offering an inspiring model of local and European democratic participation.