Italian Geographic Society's 140th anniversary

Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Italian Geographic Society (Società Geografica Italiana) celebrates the 140th anniversary of its foundation (1867).

Today an official ceremony, the first of a series, was held in the Palazzetto Mattei at Villa Celimontana in Rome, Italy, where the Society is based in a historical palace. The former chief of state Francesco Cossiga, a honorary member of the Society, was among the many personalities invited to the ceremony.

Professor Franco Salvatori, president of Societa Geografica Italiana, during his opening speech (May 12, 2007)

Professor Salvatori, in his welcoming speech, summarized the historical growth and the principal results of the institution, starting with its first expeditions in Africa at the beginning of the 20th century, underlining the modernity of the latest programs recently launched. Also, the many agreements with international institutions and universities and the activities for the preservation and advancement of the geographical culture, Salvatori said, keep the Society at a level of excellence in its field.

The Society received the compliments and greetings of the principal Italian institutions. Messages were read which came from Mr. Napolitano, current chief of state, and other authorities. Representatives from UNESCO, CNR (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche), Accademia dei Lincei, and the well known IGM, Military Geographical Institute (Istituto Geografico Militare), among other ones, brought the salute and the gratitude of their own institutions.

Most speakers pointed out the extraordinary scientific patrimony collected over time by the Society (450.000+ volumes, rare ancient maps, technical studies, images), which is among the greatest sources of academic pride for Italy. Further, its international prestige was complimented: the Society hosts in Palazzetto Mattei the European Geographic Society (EUGEO), as well as the so-called "Home of Geography" (for the International Geographical Union), and is involved at a primary level in a UNESCO program for the Education in the Sustainable Development.

Celebrations will continue over the next days.

Wikimedia Italia, WMF's local chapter, was invited and two members attended the celebrations.



This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.