Technology is a fest

The Politecnico of Torino organizes the Technology Festival to celebrate its 160th anniversary from 7 to 10 November with great events, conferences, special guests and... Avio Aero!

Oct 2019

Technology would not exist without an innate sense of beauty and would make us face great dangers if it were not regulated by a sense of good.

To celebrate the 160th year since its foundation, the Politecnico di Torino has decided to give the city a festival that focuses on the beauty of good technology: the technology that is the result of science and innovation, but that could not have taken shape without the guidance of human creativity. The Festival della Tecnologia is the brainchild of the Rector of the Politecnico di Torino, Guido Saracco, curated by the Delegate for Culture and Communication, Juan Carlos De Martin, and under the famous writer for Il Sole 24 Ore, Luca De Biase. From 7 to 10 November, more than 300 speakers from all over the world will rotate in more than 150 meetings spread throughout the city: from the Politecnico classrooms to Castello del Valentino, from Circolo dei Lettori to OGR, from Cavallerizza Reale to Accademia delle Scienze, from Museo della Radio e della Televisione RAI to Museo del Cinema, from Museo dell'Automobile to Biblioteca Civica Centrale, to name but a few.

All this is made possible thanks to the support of corporate sponsors: Avio Aero, Iren, Olivetti and Sella. Corporations along with institutional and cultural entities with technology in common, and not only, will contribute to creating a wide-ranging event offering free in-depth analyses and articulated reflections. The program features a strong interdisciplinarity: the most current technical innovations will be discussed, but a wide space will be also given to the social, environmental, ethical, economic, and political implications. Meetings will deal with, among other topics, artificial intelligence, big data, blockchain, hacking, low-tech, sustainable mobility, ecology, as well as with food, sport, music, cinema, literature, philosophy, religion, and spirituality.

So, technology and humanity together: but what does this mean?  Nobel Prize winner in economics Joseph Stiglitz will be present with a lecture entitled "Technology and inequality"John Elkann, a former student of the Politecnico will discuss the topics of the digital revolution in the automotive sector and more generally, of The impact of technology on society with students. And the writer Alessandro Baricco will be asking what has man gained and what has he lost with the digital revolution.

Among the special guests are the astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, to whom the Politecnico will confer an honorary degree in Aerospace Engineering, and who will give a lecture titled: Human exploration of space, technological challenges. And the famous documentaries anchorman Piero Angela will hold a conference titled Technology, culture and information, dedicated to the importance of spreading scientific knowledge. 

It will be a fest for everyone, for students, adults, and for children and families. In fact, the Regional School Office of MIUR (Ministry of Education, University and Research) has created the Village of Technology: dedicated to children and families, it will be located in Piazzale Duca D'Aosta (in front of the Politecnico, at the entrance to Giardini del Fante), and the audience will be able to participate in workshops and activities. 

And that is where you will find the Avio Aerospace, in a spherical pavilion that will feature the world of aviation and, more generally, the topic of flight, with exhibitions and workshops. During those workshops, students, children and families will be asked to address particular questions: How does an aircraft engine work? How do you imagine the plane of the future? New frontiers in aeronautical technology: Do you know what additive manufacturing is? 

These workshops will be run by young engineers in the EDISON Leadership Program: using fun facts, reflections and surprising tools, they will introduce visitors to this world characterized by a very high level of technology. "Using games, workshops and exhibitions, we will try to introduce the youngest and most curious to the world of flight, which at times seems very distant," says Caterina Montuori, who will lead the workshop on the plane of the future. "We will ask them to draw what they imagine the plane of the future will be. Using a viewer, we will show them an aircraft leaving the atmosphere heading towards Mars; and even more, we will show them a working polymer 3D printer for aeronautical components." 

An event with exceptional content, supported by a number of sponsors including the Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities and for Tourism, the City of Turin and the Piedmont Region, which this year proposed to pair the Festival with its initiative Fabbriche Aperte (Open Factories, ed.). On 8 and 9 November, numerous companies in Piedmont will open their doors to the curious: among these will be the Turin Additive LAB, the joint laboratory of the Politecnico di Torino and Avio Aero where new technologies and new materials for Additive Manufacturing are studied. 

Next weekend promises to be exciting!