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Newsletter/The Pio Manzu Centre, Rimini, Italy - XXIX Annual Conference, 2003

The Centre describes itself as follows.

"The Pio Manzù International Research Centre, a non-governmental organization of the United Nations and UNIDO, has been operating since 1969 as an institute for the in-depth study of the main economic and scientific aspects of the relationship between man and his environment.

The Centre's primary objective is to design and conduct global investigations into specific issues, drawing upon a broad range of expertise which it seeks to make available to those in the public, private and non-profit sectors whose task it is to devise prompt, effective action strategies.

The main aims of the Pio Manzù Centre are thus to act as:

  • a promoter of specific research projects, through the implementation of forms of synergistic collaboration between researchers of different cultural and professional backgrounds
  • a link between the world of research and the practical socio-political decision makers, providing a forum for a free and frank exchange of views and expertise on both sides.

Founded in 1969 by a group of avant-garde scholars, the Pio Manzù Centre has set up its own network of specialists, a pool of researchers operating in Bologna, London, Darmstadt, Frankfurt, Boston and Moscow.

Every year, the work of analysis and design conducted by the Centre's own research staff with invaluable contributions from scholars and researchers from numerous academic institutions is presented in the context of the Pio Manzù International Conference.

This prestigious conference, which is held every year in Rimini in October, marks the culmination of the Centre's collaborative research effort and offers an opportunity for joint reflection on the changes taking place in the global context and on the prospects of mankind."

The theme of the XXIX Annual Conference in October, 2003 was "The economics of the noble path: fraternal rights, the convivial society, fair shares for all". The conference was dedicated to the "essential figures of Ernst Schumacher and Ivan Illich, amidst many of their present-day heirs". Its four Workshop sessions were on "Sharing limited resources and a change of course"; "Assets and hardships: proposals for the invention of a fraternal sharing of benefits"; "Water or oil? The assets of living nature are not up for sale"; and "Surviving and being truly human". The proceedings will be published by the Pio Manzu Centre in due course.

Gold medals were presented to the following, nominated by the Pio Manzu Centre's International Scientific Committee (President: Mikhail Gorbachev):

Samir Amin, Franco Abruzzo, Zygmunt Bauman, Lester Brown, Ernesto Cardenal, Diego Della Valle, Emma Nicholson, Martha Nussbaum, Corrado Passera, James Robertson, Dominick Salvatore, Enzo Tiezzi, Mario Vargas Llosa, Giancarlo Elia Valori, Derek Walcott, Jean Zeigler, and posthumously the late Sergio Vieira De Mello.



The Citation for the Award

Gold Medal of the Pio Manzu Centre

Awarded by the International Scientific Committee of the Pio Manzu Centre


James Robertson

After working as an aide to Prime Minister Harold Macmillan on his "Wind of Change" African tour in 1960, and as a director of interbank research, James Robertson came to see that "decolonising" today's overpowerful institutions must be part of the transition to a democratic, environmentally benign post-modern world.

Taking a clear-cut stance on issues involving moral choice, his books as an independent writer and lecturer - including "The Sane Alternative", a landmark study for the "new economics" movement - have supported practicable measures to promote economic justice, such as monetary reform and a shift of taxation on to the use of land and other resources. He was a prominent founder of The Other Economic Summit (TOES) and the New Economics Foundation in the mid-1980s.

The Pio Manzu Centre pays homage to this 'reasonable revolutionary' and singles him out as an outstanding example of a modern thinker at the service of society.


Mikhail Gorbachev, President

Rimini, 19 October 2003


The Pio Manzu Centre's address is:

Via Budrio 35, I-47826 Verucchio/Rimini, Italy

tel.: (+39) 0541678139 - 0541670220

fax: (+39) 0541670172