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Growth Diplomacy – Expo 2015: a new start for resources use, says Bonino

Speaking before dozens of delegates at the Lingotto (Turin) Expo International Participants Meeting, Minister Emma Bonino expressed the hope that Expo 2015 “will not be remembered for the skyscrapers and all the rest, but as a new start for many countries in the better management and use of the Earth and its resources”, asserting that women will have certainly no small role in achieving this goal.

An extraordinary opportunity for women

The minister was convinced that “Expo 2015 will be an extraordinary opportunity for women’s leadership; the link between women and production is indissoluble”, she said, and 2015 “will be the year in which the UN will be discussing new Millennium Goals. Food safety is going to be treated in a new way”. The minister pointed out that “despite dramatic fragilities and tragedies, we are preparing for the event with enormous commitment. I hope that our efforts to promote women’s leadership in this EXPO are successful, because the theme of nutrition is quite naturally linked with the role of women”.

Innovation the key word

“Innovation will, in any case, be the key word, and the one best suited to defining EXPO 2015”, she continued, “innovation at the level of organization; innovation in relations with businesses”. Bonino underscored that “the goal is to attract 6 million foreign visitors”.

The WE-Women for Expo project

The Lingotto meeting also included the introduction of the WE – Women for Expo project, which places the accent on women and women’s participation in decision-making processes.

The project has three organisational goals:

Conferences in Italy and abroad

The organisation between now and 2015 of a series of EXPO-related conferences and events in both Italy and abroad, for the purpose of incorporating all the themes treated into a Charter for Women to be presented in Milan and later in New York during the United Nations for Women session. The first of these is envisaged for November in Rome with a “gender and food safety” event in the margins of the preparatory meeting for the Second International Nutrition Conference at FAO.

A woman representative for each pavilion

Bonino announced that the entire Italian diplomatic network would be lending its support to the creation of a global “Expo commissioners” network capable of placing a woman representative in each pavilion. “The existing network already has 25 commissioners, but we are counting on all participating countries”, the minister said. “This project can rely on the Foreign Ministry’s network, which is at the ready to make Milan a focal point for women. It will be the first EXPO ever with such a strong connotation in this sense, and I am very proud of that”. The intention is for women to trace a path for women within the EXPO that will culminate in its most significant moment when Italy will host the concluding event.

Romanzo globale

The EXPO women will also compile a romanzo globale (global narrative) containing each of their stories; and a series of artists will collaborate on a permanent sculpture or installation to leave to the City of Milan after the EXPO has ended.