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Trieste 2020, the European City of Science

Roberta Cutillo (January 10, 2020)
One of the most important scientific hubs in Europe, the Northeastern Italian city of Trieste is ready to kick off its year as the European City of Science, during which it will host the EuroScience Open Forum, the largest biennial general science meeting in Europe, as well as the The Science in the City Festival, which will be open to the public.

Trieste begins its year as the 2020 European City of Science. The Northeastern Italian city was chosen by the European Science Forum (Esof) over fellow finalists Leiden and the Hague, which had partenered up to represent the Netherlands. 

The nomination is a recognition of the value of the area’s academic and research network comprised of the SISSA (International School for Advanced Studies), the Elettra Sincrotrone research center, the National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics, and the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology. 

In addition to seminaries, workshops, panels, and other encounters dedicated to discussing and presenting the latest advancements in the fields of technology, innovation, science, and politics, which will take place from July 5-9 during the EuroScience Open Forum, the city will also host a Science Festival from June 27 to July 11. The event will be open to the public and feature notable guests such as Swiss astronomer Didier Queloz, who was awarded the 2019 Nobel Physics Prize along with James Peebles and Michel Mayor, and Scottish biochemist Iain Mattaj. 

A rich and diverse city for centuries thanks to its strategic location in the heart of the Mediterranean, Trieste has always been a melting pot of different cultures and traditions, a place for the exchange and diffusion of knowledge.

Over the years, Trieste has produced and welcomed numerous intellectuals, from Italo Svevo author of the Conscience of Zeno, born Aron Hector Schmitz into a Jewish family, the son of a German father and Italian mother, he then “Italianized” his name following the annexation of Trieste to the reign of Italy. Pshychoanalyst Edoardo Weiss, a student of Freud, was also born in Trieste and was among the first to bring the then new discipline to Italy.

Additionally, the Irish author James Joyce also spent some time in Trieste, where he moved in 1905 to teach at the Berlitz School, as were many other figures who at some point in their lives passed through the city, contributing to its development and in turn letting it influence their work, from the Austrian Romantic poet Rainer Maria Rilke to Italian astrophysicist Margherita Hack.  

Today, Trieste has become one of Europe’s main scientific hubs with over 30 research centers present in the area and boasts the highest number of researchers of any European city. 

For more information on the Euroscience Open Forum and The Science in the City Festival, visit the official website.

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