Living in Paris

Experience and enjoy a magic city in a multitude of different ways

Studying at Novancia is a great springboard for your future career. As well as receiving a high-quality academic education you’ll enjoy an exciting cultural and social life.

You’ll meet new people and discover a stimulating cultural environment. Whatever your interests you’ll find plenty of interesting activities to do in your spare time in Paris.

With its abundance of cafés, clubs, cultural associations, cinemas, concerts and artistic events the city will cater to all your desires. In Paris everything is possible if you know where to go, how to get there and what to do!

  • The city

The city of Paris

Paris is the largest city and capital of France and is situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the “Île-de-France” region.
It has a population of 2,193,030 with an additional 11,836,970 in the surrounding urban area. It represents one of the most highly populated metropolitan areas in Europe.


The name Paris derives from that of its earliest inhabitants, the Gaulish tribe known as the Parisii. The city was called Lutetia (more fully, Lutetia Parisiorum, "Lutetia of the Parisii") during the Roman era of the 1st to the 6th century, but during the reign of Julian the Apostate, (360–363) the city was renamed Paris.

Paris has received many nicknames, but its most famous is "La Ville-Lumière" ("The City of Light" or "The Illuminated City"), a name it owes first to its fame as a centre of education and ideas during the Age of Enlightenment, and later to its early adoption of street lighting. Paris includes also 2 islands, the Île Saint Louis and the larger Île de la Cité, which form the oldest part of the city.

About the arrondissements

The city of Paris is divided into twenty “arrondissements municipaux” (in English ‘administrative districts’), more simply referred to as arrondissements. The number of the arrondissement is indicated by the last two digits in most Parisian postal codes (75001 up to 75020), and the twenty arrondissements are arranged in the form of a clockwise spiral, starting in the middle of the city, with the first one situated on the Right Bank (north bank) of the Seine. The French cities of Lyon and Marseille are also subdivided in this way.

Economic and business framework in France

France is known for its high quality of life, its impressive art treasures, its culture and excellent education and health systems.

With 65 million inhabitants, France has a global outlook and highly attractive economic resources. It has developed, over time, an alluring and competitive market which makes it the second largest consumer market in Europe and the fifth largest economy in the world (GDP of $ 2,670 billion in 2010). Skills, qualifications and expertise represent the most important intangible capital of this country in which innovation and progress take the lead position.

The French education system is considered one of the best in the world

Within this framework education plays a crucial role. The French education system is considered one of the best in the world. France attracts an increasing number of students every year. Each year on average, more than 270,000 foreign students attend at least one semester or more in French universities and business schools. France represents the fourth largest host country for foreign students after the USA, the UK and Australia. Welcoming international talents is one of France’s key priorities. New, innovative measures were adopted in 2007 to ensure that foreign talent and those who want to work in France enjoy the best possible living and working conditions.

France is the second most attractive destination for job-creating foreign investments in Europe

France is the world’s third leading country in terms of hourly productivity. Productivity per worker is 20% higher than the European average. Although during the global economic crisis the number of investment projects remained static or even decreased in 2009, France maintained its position as the second most attractive destination for job-creating foreign investments in Europe, after the United Kingdom. France is the third leading recipient of foreign investments, second only to USA and China. In all, 23,000 foreign companies are based and do business in the country. In 2010, an average of 15 foreign business leaders chose to set up a business in France each week. Over 30,000 jobs have been created or maintained by these new investments.

International companies choose France for a variety of reasons:

Its strategic position at the heart of Europe; its membership of the eurozone, with a single currency in 17 different countries; its highly competitive business costs; the relatively low cost of commercial and residential real estate compared to the UK.

Last but not least, the headquarters of international organisations like UNESCO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (O.E.C.D.), the International Chamber of Commerce (IIC) and the informal Paris Club are all based in Paris.