For millennia, Mediterranean cities have been part of the rise and fall of the greatest civilizations of the world.
They have been the longest-lived laboratory of an enriching cultural exchange, and some of the world's most fascinating and productive cities.
From each of their unique experiences there are fascinating insights and lessons to be learned from a past that, however distant, still lurks beneath the surface of today's metropolis.
Collectively, these many insights should create a fascinating kaleidoscope of economic history, human experience and cultural diversity.
The Bibliotheca Alexandrina expresses its gratitude to the Italian Trust Fund that provided funds for this exceptional project in cooperation with The World Bank.
This project aims to recapture some of the unique flavor of this long experience, with a special effort to underline past achievements and present challenges for these cities that have offered so much, and that still have such a pivotal role to play in the transformation of their societies for the better. Its purpose is to foster dialogue among the Mediterranean countries along the theme of the Mediterranean City.
Celebrating the history and culture of the Mediterranean City and stimulating a deep reflection on its importance as a pivotal element for the political, cultural, social, and economic evolution of the Mediterranean area will promote a better understanding of its shared legacy and contribute to the affirmation of peace, cooperation, and common prosperity.
The intention is to be inspired by the examples of history, not only to honor the past, but also to adequately address the future: what can be done today for these great Mediterranean cities to reclaim the energy, the cosmopolitanism, the openness to trade in goods and services and ideas that made them the object of fascination and the engines of progress.
The project will cover a wide scope of activities:
for the cities of Alexandria, Beirut, Barcelona, Genoa, Marseille, Naples, Tunis and Venice. The exhibition provides a retrospective review and a vision for the Mediterranean city grounded in the history of the Mediterranean area along significant themes such as political influences, trade links, religious, cultural, and scientific exchanges, and population movements. It presents the history, recent achievements and development plans of selected Mediterranean cities.
The book traces the past, present and future of eight Mediterranean cities, which are: Alexandria, Beirut, Barcelona, Genoa, Marseille, Naples, Tunis and Venice. Its shows the different aspects of their shared socio-cultural heritage, their present lives, as well as future development and urban projects.
Public Policy Forum
The forum will gather Mayors, representatives of the civil and business societies, as well as urban developers from the major Mediterranean cities. Participants will discuss among them and with selected specialists the policies that affect their cities and their future development.
The project will be comprised of Participating Cities:
Content : History of Mediterranean interactions: evolution of urban form, changing economic base, conditions today, heritage and the future.
Special Alexandria Event
Objective: to promote the development of the city by the re-planning of the area around the Bibliotheca Alexandrina. It will include displays of pictures, drawings and models presented by the Egyptian/Italian design team.
Italian Tenor: Vincenzo La Scola
Monday, 21 February 2005, 7:30 p.m.
Bibliotheca Alexandrina Conference Center
(By invitation only)