3rd edition of “The World in Florence” International Festival

3rd edition of “The World in Florence” International Festival

Florence, November 27, 2023 – The 3rd edition of “The World in Florence,” an international festival dedicated to cultural narratives and sustainable mobility in the name of peace and collaboration among peoples, has concluded successfully and is already looking ahead to 2024. The event, promoted by the Romualdo Del Bianco Foundation, took place over three days at Palazzina Reale di Santa Maria Novella and Palazzo Coppini, bringing together delegates from Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Cameroon, Congo, Czech Republic, Georgia, Greece, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Madagascar, Morocco, Nigeria, Poland, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Tunisia, Ukraine, United Kingdom and more.

The festival featured meetings, debates, workshops, events, and firsthand testimonies from participating countries, revolving around themes such as cultural heritage, travel, environment, and dialogue among diverse communities. The overarching theme was tourism mobility and the challenges and potential sustainable solutions. The event served as a Learning Journey crowded with students, researchers, educators, international organizations and those interested in the inalienable right to mobility for satisfying knowledge, encounters as well as cultural curiosity in a sustainable manner.

Distinguished speakers included Mounir Bouchnaki, Honorary President of the Romualdo Del Bianco Foundation, Special Advisor to the UNESCO Director-General and the ICCROM Director-General, who shared experiences from “Talking Places” as both a scholar and a traveler. Other notable participants included Francesco Bandarin, architect and former Assistant Director-General of UNESCO for Culture, Jasir S. Alherbish, CEO of the Saudi Heritage Committee, and Hajer Krimi, Mission Officer at the office of Her Excellency the Minister of Cultural Affairs of the Republic of Tunisia and many more, addressing topics such as the pressures on cultural heritage sites due to tourism, the importance of preserving Saudi Arabia’s heritage, and the role of culture in sustainable development.

The festival concluded with the drafting of guidelines for Life Beyond Tourism for sustainable local development towards Agenda 2030, endorsed by experts and friends of the Romualdo Del Bianco Foundation. The document addresses current challenges such as conflicts, violent extremism, terrorism, humanitarian crises, poverty, unemployment, global health threats, and natural disasters, emphasizing the role of culture and cultural diversity in contributing to sustainable development. It highlights the need for active community involvement and engagement in transitioning from tourism to travel as an experience of cultural encounter and the exercise of respect for cultural diversity.

Three special events included the “Conscious Itineraries” exhibition on Speaking Places®, an interactive tourism project by the Life Beyond Tourism Movement, featuring a “phygital” display with NFC/QR code technology providing insights into cultural itineraries in network territories. Additionally, the festival featured the performance-lecture “Homo Turisticus Evolution” by Professor Duccio Canestrini, an anthropologist, journalist, and writer, and the documentary “Prime Meridian of Wine” by Georgian director Nana Jorjadze, followed by a tasting of Georgian wines.

“We are very pleased with how this edition unfolded, with active participation from citizens, students, scholars, institutions, and various personalities from around the world. It has truly become an International festival, a platform for interpreting and presenting the ‘Diversities of Cultural Expressions of the World,’ an opportunity to share experiences, knowledge, and appreciation of the cultures of different regions and their historical, cultural, and natural heritage. Fostering dialogue among communities and promoting a travel not of consumption but of value has always been our mission.” Carlotta Del Bianco, President Fondazione Romualdo Del Bianco

The World in Florence is a five-year project that started in 2021, involving and, we hope, increasingly involving young generations, local communities, businesses, and experts in a proactive dialogue aimed at outlining future scenarios and spreading and valorizing best practices. This is to ensure that heritage can be a strong vehicle for self-awareness, territorial hospitality, social and environmental development, and respect for diversity and inclusivity. Among the results of this edition are the guidelines for sustainable local development supporting the UN’s Agenda 2030 for sustainable development from the perspective of Life Beyond Tourism, contributing to a mobility that is in harmony with local cultural contexts and the environment.”

The opening roundtable, “Life beyond tourism and local communities: perspectives for Florence,” featured speakers from various sectors discussing daily actions in local realities and the importance of communities as a reference point for both public and private operators in enhancing the economy and tourism of the region. The discussions touched on new needs and desires of tourists, changes in tourism after the COVID-19 pandemic, and sustainable prospects for harmonious coexistence between resident and non-resident communities.

More information on the event website https://www.lifebeyondtourism.org/the-world-in-florence-2023/?utm_source=Lista+FRDB&utm_campaign=5188049ac2-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2023_07_17_08_35&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_-5188049ac2-%5BLIST_EMAIL_ID%5D

Final Declaration of the 2023 Festival is attached below.


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