The urban hierarchy in France is characterized by a dominating capital and a dense network of middle-sized cities. Bettering the balance of the French urban system constitutes the main goal of the urban and regional policy. This policy has resulted in such policies as those of second capitals, depressed areas and difficult urban districts, city objective charters and city newtworks, decentralisation of competencies in favor of local communities.
SALLEZ, A. (1998). France. In: National Urban Policies in the European Union. Responses to Urban Issues in the Fifteen Member States. 1st ed. Ashgate Publishing Limited, pp. 97-131.