The metropolitan area of Bologna is an important Italian tourist and cultural destination that owes its fame to a combination of historical and social characteristics. Home to the ancient University in Europe, as well as being renowned for its traditions of food and wine and the productive ingenuity of its industries, the city boasts a medieval historic center among the largest and best preserved in Europe and a network of porticoes that extends for 40 kilometers throughout the city.
To the north, the city borders on the territories of the vast Po River Valley Plain (Pianura Padana) that extends to Ferrara and the Po River Delta. This is an area with a long history of agricultural production and home to precious environmentally-protected oases. To the south, the city is bounded by the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines, rich in charming towns and villages, natural beauty, points of historical and cultural interest and criss-crossed by hiking and mountain bike trails. To the east is Imola and Romagna, which also offer a rich heritage of food and wine, and nature to be discovered by bike or on foot.
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People from Bologna and surrounding areas can participate in a wealth of activities offered by a huge range of associations: social, health-care, educational, environmental, cultural, recreational, civil-rights defending and many others. These volunteer associations, social advancement associations, social cooperatives, foundations, NGOs, committees and others are all part of what we call the “third sector,” and each is subject to its own set of legal rules.
The Emilia-Romagna Region is very active in supporting the third sector, for which it has set up special registers.
In order to facilitate networking, the International Women’s Forum (IWF) of Bologna, Italy, is a non-profit organization for English-speaking women of all nationalities. The founding spirit of IWF is reflected in the diversity of our membership, which includes women of all ages, backgrounds, and professions, originating from more than 20 countries, including Italy. The organization has developed the Bologna Inside Guide to support newcomers in establishing themselves in the city.
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Partecipa is the name of an online platform where citizens and residents of Bologna can access and participate in collaborative programs set up to further the common good. Partecipa is a civic network. By that we mean it is a social network with civic goals that helps foster relationships on common ground not only between the Public Administration and its citizens, but between citizens. It is a means to stimulate a commitment to come together and work towards common goals based on interests, places, passions, needs and resources.
Neighbourhood workshops and participatory budgeting: to strengthen the dialogue between institutions and citizens, the Municipality of Bologna promotes - with the collaboration of the Urban Innovation Foundation and Neighborhoods - the Neighborhood Laboratories, spaces for a democratic confrontation that through public assemblies and thematic meetings allow to bring out priorities, needs and proposals. The participatory budget of the Municipality is created every year through this method.
The IT-ER International Talents Emilia-Romagna virtual community is dedicated to talented international newcomers in Emilia-Romagna who want to share information gleaned from their experiences as international citizens, in order to promote just how attractive Emilia-Romagna can be for international professionals and entrepreneurs, to demonstrate how the international community thrives here, and showcase new services and initiatives that promote remote collaboration between local research and innovation systems and Emilia-Romagna citizens residing abroad.
EROI - Emilia-Romagna Open Innovation is a digital community open to anyone seeking to innovate through collaboration, finding solutions and exchanging skills along the lines of the principles of open innovation. The platform aims to raise awareness of how open innovation processes work, so that the various participants in the collaborative network, starting with businesses, can work together as a community towards innovation to the greater benefit of all concerned.
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