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CLARA MOSCHINI

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Fondazione Leonardo presents "Civiltà delle macchine"

The publication was revived to create a dialogue between scientific and humanistic culture

“Civiltà delle macchine” is to be reborn after thirty dormant years. Fondazione Leonardo, established a few months ago (see AVIONEWS), is reviving the publishing project that started in 1953, under Leonardo Sinisgalli, engineer, poet, mathematician and first editor of the magazine, thrilling many readers during the period of the Reconstruction and economic development of Italy.

The name of the quarterly publication has been kept the same and is a happy encounter between two wonderful words: ‘Civiltà’, or Civilisation which represents the achievements of a society that has reached a highly-evolved cultural level, and ‘Macchine’, or Machines, which symbolises the working of the human mind, capable of creating increasingly sophisticated devices, which are often extraordinary, saving effort and time.

The magazine, thanks to the contribution of philosophers, scientists and artists, brings together science and humanism in the phase of full technological development.

It is no coincidence that Fondazione Leonardo chose to present the first issue of the magazine in Milan, at the National Museum of Science and Technology, a symbolic venue and a nexus of knowledge and cultures. And he did so by giving the floor to those who, with talent and patience, are contributing to this project.

Among them was Luciano Violante, president of the Fondazione Leonardo: “With ‘Civiltà delle Macchine’ we are addressing the younger generations who live and will continue to live in the digital world. They will be able to freely browse through the magazine by connecting to the Fondazione Leonardo website and will be able to talk to the editor, giving us ideas, suggestions and proposals. For them we are also launching a competition of ideas for topics related to artificial intelligence, in the fields of medicine, finance, justice and defence; we are organising, in collaboration with the universities, some conversations about the future by meeting some of the major players in today’s world. Helping humans to use technology; helping technology serve humans. These are our objectives, which we have called digital humanism".

Peppino Caldarola, editor of the new magazine, also thinks we are facing a great cultural challenge: “Civiltà delle Macchine” in 1953 was a daily that swam against the tide and even today has the ambition to do so. I say against the tide because it sets up a dialogue with what is different, because it loves the fully-reasoned word and not the strident word, and it seeks a new humanism in the arts and in science. It will have no limits in exploring the products of our thought, dreams and inventions. Culture is our only thesis and in itself brings us joy".

The launch of the first issue of ‘Civiltà delle Macchine’, which included screening several films evoking the industrial and civil reconstruction of Italy by the director Maurizio Sciarra, was closed by Alessandro Profumo, CEO of Leonardo SpA, who from the outset, together with the chairman Giovanni De Gennaro, has believed in this new project.

“In a profoundly changed world that is dealing with the “digital revolution”, the motivations for the revival of ‘Civiltà delle Macchine’ are the same as they were 66 years ago: to reflect on the relationship between science, technology and humans and to create an interdisciplinary meeting place open to cross-fertilisation between worlds which are ostensibly distant, but in reality deeply interconnected. I am convinced that this second life of the magazine will be useful for all of us, thus fostering the birth of a “digital humanism” in which knowing how to do things is as important as knowing how to think, in order to grow professionally and in human terms and to enrich the communities in which we live", said Alessandro Profumo.

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