Italian Cooperation in EXPO 2015 and the European Year for Development

EXPO Milan 2015, with its focus on “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”, will be an opportunity for participating countries, international organisations, civil society and the private sector to discuss ideas and solutions to promote food and nutritional security. It will also be a forum to examine how to reduce food loss and waste by applying consisting policies, technology transfer, improvements to production systems, improved access to markets and up-to-date distribution and consumption models.

Focusing the world’s attention on essential themes for development

In view of the high number of participants and visitors expected to attend, EXPO will be an extraordinary opportunity to focus the world’s attention on essential themes for development. It will also be a chance to promote a true partnership among all the partners involved and carry out targeted awareness-raising activities for citizens, on the important topics of global development and sustainability.

Crucial issues

Italian Development Cooperation’s participation in EXPO will focus on crucial issues such as the post-2015 Development Agenda and food and nutritional security; women’s empowerment; consistency in development policies; science and technology for sustainable agricultural development; food loss and waste; and water and energy.

Development Cooperation at EXPO Milan

Italian Development Cooperation will have a physical presence at EXPO, with photography displays in Pavilion Zero and multi-media projects on its most significant projects. It will also be organising 30 or so events for both the general public and experts. These include conferences and seminars, a summer camp for children and young people from primary to secondary school level, and a concert to celebrate World Food Day. The programme of events is the fruit of close collaboration with the European Union, the United Nations agencies, international bodies and other partners such as non-governmental organisations (NGOs), universities, scientific and research institutions, and the private sector.

Attendees will include representatives of the United Nations and of the European Commission (including the Development Commissioner, Neven Mimica), the Italian Government and the governments of partner countries. Leading figures from the international academic and research communities will give talks and speeches. These include Nobel Prize-winner Amartya Sen, who will give the keynote speech at the conference on the New Development Agenda on 14 May 2015, and Prof. Jean-Paul Fitoussi, who will be the keynote presenter the following day, 15 May, at the technical-scientific workshop.

The Directorate General for Development Cooperation (DGDC) will also be covering the cost of two ministerial conferences at the EXPO, dedicated to the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in

Africa and the Small Island Developing States (SIDS). A specific emphasis will be placed on food security, sustainable agriculture, energy, and the challenges posed by climate change and natural disasters. Both initiatives will provide an opportunity to confirm the priority status Italy gives to the African continent and to the small islands states of the Pacific and Caribbean.

European Year for Development

EXPO Milan will also coincide with the “European Year for Development”, whose strapline is “Our world, our dignity, our future”. Its goals are to raise European citizens’ awareness of the work done by the EU and its Member States in the Development Cooperation field, and of the benefits of such initiatives both for the European countries themselves and for partner countries.

The programme of Development Cooperation events will form the core of the activities for the European “Year”. They will be complemented by awareness-raising initiatives for which DGDC can obtain funding from the European Commission; a broad-ranging communications campaign with the support of a specialist agency; the new “Development Week” initiative in schools; and a series of lectures in Italian universities, organised in collaboration with the Conference of Italian University Rectors.