Italy and Japan praise a long lasting history of cultural and commercial relations over the past centuries, endorsed by tight diplomatic relations celebrated this year on their 150th anniversary with a ceremony at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.
On May 11, 2016 Ambassador Umberto Vattani, President of Venice International University, received the Grand Cordon decoration of the Order of the Rising Sun by Emperor Akihito and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The Order of the Rising Sun was established in 1875 as Japan's first award, honoured by the Japanese Government; it features rays of sunlight radiating from the rising sun and a pendant flower, and is conferred to a person who has distinguished himself or herself by exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of services and achievements.
President Vattani has assiduously worked in building up strong and fertile relations between the two countries, during his long service at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy as Secretary General, and as personal delegate of the Italian Prime Minister during the G7 meetings.
He is President of the Italy-Japan Foundation, that supports important economic initiatives, cultural exchange and artistic activities, personally curated since 2001 by Ambassador Vattani both in Italy and in Japan.
Thanks to Ambassador Vattani’s efforts, Japan has a valuable representative in Venice International University with Waseda University (Tokyo), one of the 16 member universities from all over the world in VIU consortium.
Visit also the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation website
The University of Rome "Tor Vergata" officially became a Member of VIU following a unanimous vote during the Assembly Meeting of VIU on Saturday, March 12, 2016.
The Rector of "Tor Vergata", Professor Giuseppe Novelli, joined the meeting and was greeted by the VIU President, Ambassador Umberto Vattani, and the Rectors and representatives of all the Partner Universities.
The University of Rome "Tor Vergata" was established in 1982 and is structured in 6 Schools (Economics, Law, Engineering, Humanities and Philosophy, Medical School and Mathematics, Physics and Natural Sciences) which are organized in 19 Departments.
"Tor Vergata" has 39,000 graduate and postgraduate students and offers 112 degree courses (3- and 5-year degree courses and Master degrees) and 31 PhD courses.
On March 12, 2016, the Governing Bodies of VIU convened in San Servolo for the meetings of the Assembly and the Board of Directors. On that occasion, Professor Carlo Giupponi was elected as the new Dean of VIU.
Professor Giupponi succeeds Professor Agar Brugiavini, who held the position of Dean of VIU from 2012 to 2016.
Professor Giupponi is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics at Ca' Foscari University Venice and Director of the Interdepartmental VICCS Centre (Venice Centre for Climate Studies).
His research activity focuses on sustainability, valuation methods, the integrated assessment and management of natural resources, with a focus on water and agriculture and the interactions with global change drivers.
He is currently responsible for several European and national projects in the fields of climate change, water management, agri-environmental policy and water pollution. He has authored or co-authored over 230 scientific and professional papers. He is currently a member of several scientific societies, a member of the Board of Directors of the International Environmental Modelling and Software Society (iEMSs), a member of the council of the European Climate Forum.
At the end of 2015, VIU entered the United Nations Global Compact, a United Nations initiative that aims to encourage businesses worldwide to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies.
After this first success, on February 23, 2016, VIU also joined as Founding Member the Global Compact Network Italy Foundation. Launched in 1999, the Global Compact initiative counts today 13000 corporate and other stakeholders participants, in 161 countries worldwide.
Companies and institutions joining the Global Compact initiative publicly commit to align their corporate strategies and operations with the 10 Global Compact Principles on human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption and to take steps to support UN goals, in order to create a sustainable and inclusive global economy that delivers lasting benefits to people, communities and markets.
The local networks, as the Global Compact Network Italia, work to advance the initiative and its 10 Principles at country level. They help companies understand what responsible business means within different national, cultural and language contexts and facilitate outreach, learning, policy dialogue, collective action and partnerships.
The commitments and the achievements of the Members are periodically assessed through the submission of a report, namely the Communication on Progress (COP) or Communication of Engagement (COE). This document reports on the benefits of Sustainability – in terms of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption - for the Member institution, including, for example, the integration of corporate sustainability into operations, the internal information sharing, and the strengthening of the relationships with stakeholders and investors.
In October 2015 a delegation of Rectors and Professors from the VIU Member Universities headed by VIU President Ambassador Umberto Vattani was received at the Presidential Palace in Rome.
The President of the Italian Republic, the Hon. Sergio Mattarella, expressed in his speech his praise and admiration for such an innovative and successful example of a multicultural and interdisciplinary academic venture.
The speech can be found on Youtube at this link.