Grenoble, a city in the heart of the Alps
Grenoble is a city hosting 405 000 inhabitants on a 310 km2 surface of land, of which more than 50% is devoted to forests. Located close to the Swiss and Italian borders in the south-east part of France, it benefits from an ideal situation in the middle of the Rhône-Alpes region, one of the most thriving and dynamic region in Europe. Only three hours away from Paris with the very fast train (TGV), one hour away from Lyon and two hours away from Geneva, Grenoble offers many advantages: ease of transportation, quality of life, research infrastructure. These advantages led to its classification as the number 1 city in which to study in France by Express and Student Magazines in 2009. Grenoble is also the first research center right after Paris (20% of Grenoble's active population works in research). Prestigious European research centers, such as ESRF (European Synchrotron Research Facilities) and EMBL (European Molecular Biology Laboratory), are also located in Grenoble. This economic dynamism and the potential of its research centers contribute to the unique attractiveness of the area.