Transforming Siena into the Italian Capital of Millennials and make it a unique place that fosters relations and connections between actors, research institutions, businesses and individuals within the agri-food sector, with a specific attention to those who are committed in bringing about new technological and social solutions as well as new products, processes and organizational forms: this is, under the auspices of the G7 Italian Presidency, the objective of the second edition of the Millennials Festival which is an official side event of the G7 SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY.
The Festival, held in the heart of Siena on the 5th and 6th of October 2017, is the result of the cooperation between the University of Siena and the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (MIUR) and is held under the auspices of Regione Toscana and the Chamber of Commerce of Siena.
The 2017 edition is also enriched by the fundamental support of the Siena Municipality and benefits from the active participation of the Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition (BCFN), the Monte dei Paschi Foundation (FMPS), the Future Food Institute (FFI), the Italian Alliance for Sustainable Development (ASviS), Seeds and Chips – The Global Food Summit and the Accademia Musicale Chigiana. The initative also benefits from the partnership with the Accademia de’ Fisiocritici, the Accademia dei Georgofili and the whole community of the euromediterranean Programme PRIMA (Partnership for Research and Innovation in the Mediterranean Area).
The growing urgency that we face today is to “connect the dots” in a system that still presents high levels of fragmentation: Research organizations, Universities, businesses, startups, political and financial institutions, farmers, end users, consumers should interact within the premises of a more cohesive innovation’s system, active and open to all stakeholders. A system that fosters the sharing of knowledge and not only provides visibility to best practices, but also facilitates their spreading.
In responding to this challenge, the role of Millennials is crucial. Their lifestyles are redefining nutritional, as well as social and production-related needs. This generation’s ability to creatively connect knowledge and experiences is matched by its ability to imagine and create new solutions to improve the sustainability of our territories through food systems.
The festival’s objective is to emphasize and indicate practical proposals and stimulate the debate within the agri-food sector, in order to transform the demand for innovation into a driving force for social and economic change on three different levels:
- Local level: How to (re)build the relation between food and territory?
- European level: What are the scenarios for the future of food innovation in Europe?
- Mediterranean level: How could we overcome geographical and cultural barriers to create transnational projects that have a concrete, sustainable and lasting impact? How do we “climb over the wall” that seems to be still separating technological innovation and its cultural, anthropological and social components?
- Food Agorà: Sharing Inspirational Stories a moment to listen to inspirational stories of innovation coming from the agri-food sector.
- Food Future Zone & Local Experience: Showcasing Innovation and local excellence: a moment to see, touch and look at new products and innovative processes which will be showcased in an exposition of innovators coming from research institutions, universities, institutions, schools NGOs, businesses from Italy but also from the Mediterranean.
- Food Camp: Empowering Students to Hack: a moment to see 200 students coming from 18 Italian regions at work for a 48 hours long design competition, to answer specific challenges regarding food sustainability.
Food and “Buongoverno”– a tribute to Ambrogio Lorenzetti that reconstructs a living and interactive portrait of artisan shops that are represented in the famous “Buongoverno” frescoes. Students will be able to interact with researchers while deepening their knowledge through an experiential moment of scientific validity, coordinated by Prof. Marco Valenti – Department of Historical Sciences and Cultural Heritage of the University of Siena.