Watch the latest conference in Nantes

Thursday 14th September 2017

From 1pm to 7pm : plenary session and speed meeting

From 1pm to 7pm : plenary session and speed meeting
Public’s reception from 1pm and opening speech at 1 :30pm.
Plenary session : from 2pm to 3 :30pm
What’s at stake at night : French and European standpoints and experiences

From now on, metropolises and cities across Europe have taken up the issues related to nightlife and its management modes. However, we can also deal with this subject from the other territories’ standpoint (rural and sensitive neighbourhoods) : nightlife is not only a political issue but also a public policies’ issue.

First, a political issue. Between those who sleep, those who party, those who work and those who simply stay up, some grey zones and disagreements exist and create predictably tensions. These zones must be cleared, reconsidered and eventually lived. These realities become actually visible at night and must say something to us : marginalities, alternative cultures, emerging cultures, inequalities, inclusions and exclusions of people, gender and sexuality issues.

What’s at stake at night is primarily learning how to live together again.

And then, a public policies’ issue, which means urban, economic, cultural, youth and transport policies. Thinking about nightlife becomes a way to reconsider our policies. This reflection must lead to examine ways to benefit from nightlife as a source of wealth for cultural, economic and commercial development of territories, but also as a social shared time.

From 4pm to 5 :30pm :
State of play of local initiatives in France and Europe
Discussion with French and European nightlife professsionals ; academics and elected representatives of French and European cities.

From 6pm to 7pm :
Speed meeting
The participants in the conference will be able to meet each other according to their affinities, needs and desires. More information coming soon.

From 7pm : Cocktail and tour of Paris by night

More information here.


Friday 15th September 2017

From 9 :30am to 12am : roundtables organized at the Cité de la Mode et du Design

Roundtable 1 : Co-developing a nightlife’s policy, between fantasy and reality

Elected representatives and departments in charge of nightlife’s different aspects now focus on nightlife with its different dimensions and move towards a global and cross-sectional approach. In order to implement these multisectoral policies, plenty of European cities develop a participative governance mode that associates all of the actors concerned by this issue.

On the basis of results from a survey conducted in 10 French and European cities, this roundtable will be organized in order to discuss issues, levers and obstacles that we meet in our local practices of co-construction of nightlife’s policies.

What was the impact of shared policies on nightlife’s industry from day to day? Which methods must be reconsidered ?


Roundtable 2 : The night : carrier of attractiveness ?

Nightlife is a real attractiveness factor to the benefit of territories.

We even observe a real competition between European metropolises in terms of cultural tourism. This competition is coupled with a conflicting cohabitation between several groups within the same territory : nowadays, a genuine misunderstanding and lack of knowledge brings young people, elderly people, residents and professionals into conflict.

Economically speaking, a general agreement seems to emerge on the fact that nightlife is a real attractiveness factor to the benefit of the whole territory. However, one can think that this economic dimension, coupled with what we call « territorial marketing » (development of its attractiveness), can have a particularly negative impact in terms of territorial balance, relationship with people and underscoring of the local ecosystem.

However, others think that these two notions are not necessarily contradictory. According to them, big cultural and sports events, supported by a large media coverage, contribute to enhance a territory’s image and might convince large companies to set up.

Thus, nightlife solicits plenty of fields : culture, sport, rediscovering… that could become in their turn attractiveness factors for a territory, or even social shared time.

This relation between culture, sport and attractiveness is shown especially by the linking of nightlife and tourism.
Indeed, festive entertainment is the main criterion for young people when they choose a destination, added to cost of living and geographic positioning.

For this reason, French metropolises face a tough competition of their European neighbours, including Berlin (with electro music) and Dublin (with culture of pubs). Large cities should therefore enhance their own identity, token of their peculiarity, in order to develop their tourist attractiveness.

Beyond cultural and sport development, supporting nightlife means ultimately to allow to reinforce a territory’s attractiveness and therefore support indirectly other activities, including economy and a unique relation between citizens. As a result, in so far as culture became an issue for creative cities, cultural and sports policies must involve public authorities and economic, tourist and artistic actors more closely.

How can we turn nightlife into an asset for our territories? How can we redefine exploration of territories at night? How can we enhance the peculiarity of territories and people ?

Roundtable 3 : Night’s passengers, users or citizens ?

From a sociological and urban point of view, we observe a real transformation of urban areas during the passage from day to night. Indeed, the city becomes more difficult to read and grasp. Its commercial offer changes and becomes more specialized while becoming more complex. The physical climate itself is subject to evolution : it turns into a cooler and quieter space, darker but also less contrasting. People are not spared by this change : traffic decreases, men become overrepresented compared to women, gender becomes blurred. In the end, users’ mental state itself is altered since they get more tired, excited and less adapted in general to the city during nightlife.

These different changes must lead us to reconsider our urbanity at night. Plenty of questions arise : which urban systems (transports, street lighting, cultural institutions)? Should we set up shelters for 24 hours a day? Should we create spaces or platforms of exchanges?

In the end, we must reconsider the nocturnal urban planning itself in order to reduce public spaces’ sensitivity.

Beyond a merely functional aspect, nightlife must be reconsidered also with its social dimension. Indeed, people use the city differently at night : citizens’ needs and expectations are different and it might lead to conflict between users (night owls, workers, residents, homeless…). At night, landmarks disappear and concerns and fears increase, so a specific feeling of insecurity becomes stronger, of which criminality is only a factor. The development of festive areas and binge-drinking have consequences in terms of health and security. Thus, a reflection must lead to a debate on different subjects : how can we rethink the way public spaces get peopled in order to naturally allow a social control? How can we induce a diversity of activities in these spaces? How can we devolve nightlife in a general way, think about the absence of schedules and the risk of nightlife’s depletion? How can we provide night activities in peripheral urban areas, like some priority neighbourhoods for urban planning?

We must certainly find in the end a way to adapt night to day, and vice versa.

In terms of citizenship, we can discuss the concept of « temporary citizenship ».

We should also discuss the impact of terrorist attacks and measures implemented by the government, such as state of emergency, on night activities and its local management.

Workshop 1 : Imminence of the new noise regulation : we must get involved and not be subject of changes

The new regulation is ready, the text has been approved, it will be released soon… Lowering of sound level, inclusion of low frequencies, integration of outdoor events, creation of resting areas,… The future issue is to apply these new rules in a constructive and respectful manner. For this reason, AGI-SON created four working groups :

- Reception managers in performance halls and tour managers ;
- Rehearsal studios’ managers : passing on good practices and sound management on stage
- Performance halls with less than 300 places
- Outdoor / indoor festivals

After a presentation of the sound measures campaign « Opér@’Son » and the future regulation, this workshop will be an opportunity to discuss issues and subjects from the different working groups.

Workshop 2 : Innovative devices regarding prevention of risk behaviours and vulnerable populations

Developed and animated by the Collectif Culture Bar-Bars and Kronenbourg SAS.

Nightlife is an essential component of a urban area : it ensures elementary functions in terms of social link, entertainment, cultural offer, tourist attractiveness and good economic activity.

To take into account optimally all of these aspects, a nightlife policy must also make sure to maintain a high level of requirement in terms of security and public health.

This balance must come from a dialogue between all people concerned by these matters and from new forms of intervention between public and private actions. Since it consists in training and helping our fellow human beings, we are all responsible and co-educators of populations, with crossed-operations between public and private structures. The issues of these new devices, beyond the health and prevention aspect, also consist in making territories safe, developing their image and attractiveness.

Binge-drinking, nomadism in public spaces,… Towards this mass phenomenon, a private intervention is not enough, such as public intervention can not become the be-all and end-all of a public health policy.

With concrete examples, this workshop will present the implementation of innovative actions and devices and their impact in terms of assistance to people. Three themes will be discussed more precisely :

  • The « Nudge », an environmental stimulus that encourages to change behaviours
  • The cultural offer (live shows) and its reducing effect on alcohol consumption
  • Prevention and risk reduction devices towards vulnerable populations

Friday 15th September 2017

From 1 :30pm to 4pm : plenary session and conclusion

Which truth(s) for nightlife ?

The history of the night, what it means within humankind and civilization’s progress, was often neglected. Thanks to human ingenuity, science progress and dissemination of knowledge, we are no longer limited to daytime hours to act, create, discuss or simply live.

Extreme rules can not be a solution, neither can an automatic introduction of ethics because it only brings « moral panic ». We must indeed offer new tools and try to make the user aware of his responsibilities without making him feel guilty. This process must be cooperative and cross-sectoral between public policies and professionals. It will be for sure one of the nightlife’s issues.

Let’s reconsider our practices, develop a new paradigm and build together resources that allow to implement efficient and useful public policies for every territory.