Wikimania:Expressions of Interest/2025/Paris, France
Expression of interest: Paris/France[edit source]
Wikimédia France proposes to organize Wikimania 2025 in Paris or in its very close area such as Versailles or Reims. High place of world culture with recognized museum institutions, high place of tourism, the Paris region has all the ingredients for an international event organization like Wikimania. Wikimédia France has strengthened its skills in international events organization in recent years, notably with the French-speaking Wikiconvention organized on several occasions since 2016 and which welcomed hundreds of participants from several continents. Before that, Wikimédia France had organized the Hackathon in Lyon in 2015.
We would be particularly honored and proud to welcome the Wikimedia movement. We really hope to make it an event combining conviviality, inclusiveness and direct impact on the participants and on the political and cultural ecosystem in France and more widely in Europe.
- Wikimédia France
- We would be delighted to open the organization to other French-speaking affiliates for example to promote knowledge sharing
The Paris area offers a wide range of possibilities to host an event like Wikimania, either in Paris or in the immediate vicinity. The region is very well served with many train lines that allow you to move around very easily. Several options are available to us.
Venue + lodging[edit source]
- Paris : as in Stockholm, we have the possibility of relying on partner universities with which we have very good relations. In summer, it is even possible to use the student residences. A possible place that could work well would be for example the Cité Universitaire. We can also get closer to suitable congress centers with hotels nearby in order to facilitate and strengthen conviviality around a specific district of Paris or in a nearby city such as Versailles for example.
- Paris area : the advantage of moving a little away from Paris while making sure to keep a rapid transit connection will perhaps be to lower organizational costs.
The possibilities are multiple and it will depend on the orientation that we wish to give to this Wikimania.
Travel + visas[edit source]
France is the third most present country in number of embassies in the world, with 163 embassies. As the main organizer of the French-speaking Wikiconvention since 2016, Wikimédia France has also gained a solid experience about visa applications. As the first touristic destination in the world, Paris area is very well connected and has several major international airports (Paris Charles de Gaulle, Paris Orly, Paris Beauvais) and major trains stations (Gare du Nord., Paris-Gare de Lyon,..), allowing people to come from all continents and most countries. The inner Paris area has a solid public transportation network with 14 subways lines. Disabled access in parisian transports network will be a lot better in 2025, thanks to the 2024 Olympic games.
France is also part of the Schengen area that includes 27 European countries with open border. No passport is required to travel from and within this area. If its visa application is denied by France, people can submit a visa application for another European country and then reach France as a second step.
Facilities + services[edit source]
As the capital region, Paris and its area offer all facilities such as: hospitals, shops, transportation services, police, cultural sites. The whole region is perfectly covered by internet and 5G.
Safety + security[edit source]
France is a safe country with low crime rates.
There is no problem about freedom of expression for a such event in France. Law enforcement protect the rights and safety of minorities and the population is progressive specially in urban areas. LGBTQ+ people and people of color are welcome.
We recommend to keep an eye on your belongings to protect them from pickpockets within subways and in touristic places.
Alternate locations[edit source]
If for particular reasons, we were unable to find something satisfactory in the Paris region, some major French cities are accessible by high-speed train from Charles de Gaulle airport in 2/3 hours maximum (Lyon, Bordeaux, Rennes...), with also a national or international airport. They have a good convention center capacity and, for the three cities mentioned, an active wikimedian local group with connections with city government and GLAMs.
With the organization of the Olympic Games in France in the summer of 2024, it will be very difficult to organize Wikimania from 2024. 2025 is therefore a better option, especially since we can rely on the infrastructure put in place for the Olympics. The summer period (June-August) in the Paris region is a good time. The Paris region is a little less active, especially the first 15 days of August when many people leave for the Atlantic or the Mediterranean for the holidays. With climate change, we can still have periods of heat waves, especially in July and August, which are generally quite brief but which must be anticipated. This is a point of vigilance for fragile people.
- During the past French-speaking Wikiconvention , we have paid particular attention to welcome people with specials needs. We implemented "calm room" (low stimulation area) and "flappause" (silent applause) for neurodiverse people during events. We also check before events accessibility to give advice and guide people in wheelchair. Except RER, Paris subway is not suitable for wheelchair users but a transport on demand service for people with reduced mobility will be available. A special committee ("comité de convivialité") about inclusivity and behavior/code of conduct is also reachable at any moment to help people.
- Paris is well connected by railway. Travels within Europe are easy and carbon footprint will be lower. There are direct trains to Paris from Amsterdam, Berlin, Barcelona, Brussels, Geneva, London, Milan, Vienna (night train)...
- We are thinking about organizing a special cultural activity for Wikimedians in collaboration with a museum. More generally, we want that Wikimedians who do not know each other but share a common interest could have valuable place and time to exchange and work together.