|o President of the Regional Council||Laurent Wauquiez (LR)|
|o Prefect||Pascal Mailhos|
|o Total||69,711 km2 (26,916 sq mi)|
|o Density||110/km2 (300/sq mi)|
|Demonym(s)||Auvergnat / Rhônalpine|
Aurhalphine (rare & non-official)
|Time zone||UTC+01:00 (CET)|
|ISO 3166 code||FR-ARA|
|Total||$320 billion (US$ bn)|
|Per capita||$40,200 (US$)|
Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes (ARA; French: [ov ?on?alp] ; Arpitan: Ôvèrgne-Rôno-Ârpes; Occitan: Auvèrnhe Ròse Aups; Italian: Alvernia-Rodano-Alpi) is a region in southeast-central France created by the 2014 territorial reform of French regions; it resulted from the merger of Auvergne and Rhône-Alpes. The new region came into effect on 1 January 2016, after the regional elections in December 2015.
The region covers an area of 69,711 km2 (26,916 sq mi), making it the third largest in metropolitan France; it had a population of 7,948,287 in 2017, second to Île-de-France. It consists of twelve departments and one territorial collectivity (Lyon Metropolis) with Lyon as the prefecture.
This new region combines diverse geographical, sociological, economic and cultural regions, which was already true of Rhône-Alpes, as well as Auvergne, to a lesser extent. While the old Rhône-Alpes and Auvergne regions each enjoyed a unity defined by axes of communication and the pull of their respective metropoles,[Note 1] the new combination is heterogeneous; it sustained lively opposition from some local officials after its creation.
The text of the territorial reform law gives interim names for most of the merged regions, combining the names of their constituent regions alphabetically, separated by hyphens. Permanent names would be proposed by the new regional councils and confirmed by the Conseil d'État by 1 October 2016.
The interim name of the new administrative region was a hyphenated placename, composed of the historic region of Auvergne, the river Rhône and the French Alps (Alpes). The same name has been chosen as the definitive name, which was officialized by the Conseil d'État on 28 September 2016.
According to several online polls from Lyon Capitale, the name "Rhône-Alpes-Auvergne" led voting, ahead of "Alpes-Auvergne" and "AURA" (an acronym for Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes), which was proposed by Jean-Jack Queyranne, former president of the regional council of Rhône-Alpes. Schoolchildren were consulted about the name of the new region in February 2016; local residents were consulted in March.
After adjusting the votes in proportion to the number of inhabitants of the regions (Rhône-Alpes having five times the population of Auvergne) the name "Rhône-Alpes-Auvergne" was still leading, ahead of "Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes" and the acronym "AURA".
Despite this result, Laurent Wauquiez and his team decided not to follow the preference of the citizens of the new region, and the name Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes was put to the vote by the regional council and adopted unanimously on 23 June 2016; it was made official on 28 September 2016 through a decree appearing in the Journal Officiel de la République Française.
The region was given a coat of arms in October 2017, which combined those of Auvergne, Savoie, Lyonnais and Dauphiné. It also has a flag, which initially consisted of the coat of arms on a white background, but was replaced by a heraldic flag in January 2018. On 9 February 2018, the region formalised the flag and the coat of arms on its website, as implemented by Mattieu Casali, a historical scholar. It was received favourably by the national heraldic commission.
The blazon is described on the region's website (in French) as "Écartelé : au premier d'or au gonfanon de gueules bordé de sinople (Auvergne); au deuxième de gueules à la croix d'argent (Savoie); au troisième de gueules au lion d'argent (Lyonnais); au quatrième d'or au dauphin d'azur, crêté, barbé, loré, peautré et oreillé de gueules (Dauphiné)," which translates roughly to: "Quartered: the first quarter, with an or (gold) background, containing a gules (red) banner fringed with vert (green), representing Auvergne; the second quarter, with a gules background, containing an argent (silver) cross, representing Savoie; the third quarter, with a gules background, containing an argent lion, representing Lyon; the fourth quarter, with an or background, containing an azure dolphin with gules details, representing the Dauphiné."
The Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes administrative region covers an area of 69 711 km2 in the centre and east of the south of France. It is a collection of regions of diverse topographies, climates, natural resources, cultures, folklore, architecture, and languages. It is bordered by five other administrative regions: Bourgogne-Franche-Comté to the north, Centre-Val de Loire to the northeast, Nouvelle-Aquitaine to the west, Occitanie to the south-west, and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur to the south-east. It is also bordered by Italy (Aosta Valley and Piedmont) to the east and Switzerland (Cantons of Geneva, Valais, and Vaud) to the north-east.
The Gross domestic product (GDP) of the region was 270.0 billion euros (327.0 billion dollars) in 2018, accounting for 11.9% of French economic output. GDP per capita adjusted for purchasing power was 30,200 euros or 100% of the EU27 average in the same year. The GDP per employee was 109% of the EU average.
The region is governed by the Regional Council of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes consisting of 204 members. The current regional council was elected in regional elections on 20 and 27 June 2021, with the list of Laurent Wauquiez consisting of The Republicans (LR), and the Union of Democrats and Independents (UDI) securing an absolute majority of 136 seats.
|Candidate||List||First round||Second round||Seats||+/-|
|Laurent Wauquiez *||LR-UDI-LMR-VIA||751,375||43.85||960,785||55.20||136||+23|
[...] En 2017, la Commission nationale d'héraldique s'est réunie deux fois, les 3 avril et 18 octobre. Elle a examiné 31 dossiers : [...] o 2 blasons de grandes régions : Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes [...] 61 % de ces dossiers ont reçu un avis favorable de conformité héraldique, notamment ceux des grandes régions. [...]