The Atlantic Cities action is focused on 5 Strategic Priorities; among them Innovation, Research & Training; as well as Equality and Social Innovation. These priorities determine the steps to follow in the Atlantic Cities initiatives. To achieve this end, Talent creation is a crucial element.

Otherwise, Youth is facing the existing gap between educational steps and the professional ones. On the other side, inequalities are highly increasing within the Atlantic Arc countries, counting with high rates of youth and women unemployment.

Therefore, linking youth skills development in the framework of non-formal education and encouraging women to work in underrepresented sectors are at the core of Atlantic Cities Talent policy and thus within Atlantic Futures Programme.


Atlantic Futures (AF) programme is focused on increasing youth employability opportunities and rights by the creation of job experiences in different sectors: European affairs, international relations, maritime affairs, SME promotion and the cultural and creative sector.

At this moment, Atlantic Futures is present in four different projects developed by Atlantic Cities’ association and therefore it counts with different funding sources.

  1. AYCH (Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs) funded by Interreg Atlantic Area programme seeks to facilitate careers of young people by promoting creativity and innovation through non-formal education. Therefore, it allows youth to approach to labour markets real needs, improve labour mobility and promote social entrepreneurship under the framework of equal opportunities.
  2. She4Sea, funded by our own funding sources, promotes the role of women, particularly young women, in maritime affairs and their right to have better access to this sector, and to high ranking positions.
  3. Around Me, funded by the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme aimed to promote Atlantic cities SMEs’ development by creating a network between young and experienced entrepreneurs, from different countries, in which they could interact, exchange knowledge or develop new ideas. (ended in 2020)
  4. Atlantic Futures 1, funded in collaboration with other programmes such as IVY (Interregional Volunteer Youth) or Erasmus +, offers young graduates the chance to learn about the intricacies of European projects, regional development and youth employability.

Atlantic Futures 2, funded by own funding sources, ACA offers the opportunity to young professionals to test work realities at its headquarters. Multiple options are available, from internships and vocational trainings, to apprenticeships (French alternance) and other assisted contracts (French CUI-CAE) that allow us to tackle youth unemployment.

Atlantic Futures 3, as a second stage of Atlantic Futures programme implementation, the main aim is to bring the initiative to our City members that wish to host Atlantic Cities interns at their International/European Services. Another option is a short “immersive experience” of local civil servants at our General Secretariat, in order to develop their EU skills.

AF approach is based on three pillars: long term mentoring, flexibility, and open communication that enable the success of the programme. By mentoring, Atlantic Cities support the career development of young participants. This is enhanced by flexibility, each applicantion is individually assessed. By open communication among the association, partners and participants, AF ensures a smooth exchange between information, expectations and possibilities.


In 2016, the Atlantic Cities Network created a campaign called “She for Sea” to make more visible the role of women working in maritime affairs.

She4Sea (She for the Sea) is, therefore, a project that shows how women can be at the forefront of the maritime sector and how it creates a better, more inclusive and representative blue economy. Through interviews, events and awareness campaigns in Atlantic cities, She4Sea shows how women are undertaking careers in fisheries, marine biology, blue biotechnologies and creative ocean industries, creating new opportunities.

Know the stories of these women on the blog.

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