The contest for the election of the next “Atlantic City of the year” is open until the end of November 2019. With this competition the Atlantic Urban Forum seeks to highlight an Atlantic city that has contributed to sustainable development taking into account its geographical identity. The San Sebastian Charter, signed in 2008 and 2018 is also a major inspiration of the contest. San Sebastian is the city leading ecoRIS3.

This years’ edition of the contest is particularly special, as the network of Atlantic Cities will be celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2020.  

As Atlantic Cities is the capitalisation partner of ecoRIS3, the jury of the contest will also take into account the good practice of the candidates concerning RIS3 and the facilitation of innovative eco-systems.  

Image: Viana do Castelo (Portugal), Atlantic City of the year 2018



With an estimated value of € 42,532.00, the winning city of the contest will benefit from: 

  • A training day for political representatives and officials. 
  • Starting from the local strategy, personalized training will be provided on the different European opportunities and funds to carry out EU projects.
  • One year of subscription to the Atlantic Cities network (as long as the city is not a member or has not previously been a member of the network)
  • Specific international technical assistance (European projects, advice on the European position…)
  • A prominent position in communication and in European events organised by Atlantic Cities and beyond.

Who can participate? 

All Atlantic cities can participate, and the member cities of the network are automatically enrolled in the contest, with the exception of those that have already been winners in past competitions: Brest, Viana do Castelo and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

The three cities have been chosen as hosts of Atlantic European Forums. Similarly, Brest will host the European Maritime Day in 2023. 

How to Participate? 

The interested city may submit its application through a cover letter signed by the mayor, before November 30th, 2019. The city must include its identification data, and a reflection on its potential as a sustainable city, all based on the San Sebastian Charter and the Action Plan for the Atlantic Year that the municipality wishes to undertake. 

Next, the jury will meet to choose the winner, which will be announced on December 4, during the Extraordinary General Assembly of 2019. This event will take place in Brussels and it’s open to interested organisations. Registrations are open at Atlantic Cities’ website.  

A prize with a citizen’s dimension:  

Citizens of any Atlantic city are invited to send us a video of the city that you think will become the Atlantic City of the year 2020! The best videos and photos will be shared on the YouTube channel and social networks of the Atlantic Cities.  

Citizens and interested entities can also participate in social networks with #ACY2020!