Work and the civil economy, where, how and with whom

21 Sep 2021 | Life

Florence, Italy, September 24 – 26, the third edition of the National Festival. Among the promoters, the School of Civil Economy with its center at the Industrial Park in Loppiano.


Beautiful on the outside and good on the inside, one might say. The Reynaldi Company produces a wide range of quality natural cosmetics just outside Turin. The company is growing in terms of turnover and employees and is managed by a close-knit family unit. But behind it all there are choices based on environmental sustainability. The water used for production is recycled during the manufacturing processes. Ninety-seven percent of the industrial waste is recovered. From an energy point of view, photovoltaic panels ensure self-production with CO2 emissions close to zero. Management is also sensitive to social sustainability. Cooperation and work enhancement projects have begun in Italy, Burkina Faso and Nigeria. With such an impressive profile, the Reynaldi Company was nominated Ambassador Company of the Civil Economy, winning the acclaim of the National Festival of Civil Economy at the end of its 2020 edition. Other winners included aspiring entrepreneurs for their production ideas, and committed municipal administrations for their application of the principles of solidarity, reciprocity and the common good. In short, the Festival turned out to be a convergence of good practices and courageous projects.

Palazzo dei 500


The third edition of the event will be held in Florence, on September 24 – 26, 2021 and is titled, In Search of Meaning. People, Work, Relationships. “The pandemic was a deep fracture in everyone’s life, observed Elena Granata, Professor of Urban Planning at the Milan Polytechnic and member of the Festival’s scientific committee. “Now is the time to be decisive in searching for a new meaning that holds people, territories and communities together starting from the widespread questions of how, where and with whom to live, work, live, along with the environmental issues.”

Palazzo dei 500


The festival’s formula seems a bit worn out. “There is a big credibility problem today,” explained Professor Granata, “the credibility of companies, the work world and politics. So, the goal of this edition too is to reduce the gap between what we say and what we manage to do.” The four promoters are attempting to do just that – the Federation of Cooperative Credit Banks and Rural Banks, and 270 institutions which have been committed to the promotion of the regions for over 130 years; NeXt – New Economy For All, a network of organizations that promote a more inclusive, sustainable and participatory economy;Confcooperative, the main association of the cooperative movement and social enterprises, which was founded a century ago and includes 18,500 cooperatives with 525,000 employees.

The fourth promoter is the School of Civil Economics which was begun in 2012 and promoted by economist Luigino Bruni, who is the coordinator of the Economy of Communion Project. The school is based at and is comprised of a network of scholars, business experts and institutions.

The school’s vice president, Elena Granata, explains: “Our contribution to the Festival is to deepen the training of teachers and educators who will train the next generations in civil economy and sustainability.” The challenge is great, and it is urgent. “We have companies and social worlds that are moving on and then – paradoxically – we have universities and schools that are stuck in obsolete programs, with a vision of the economy based on business, finance and the individual. Before training the entrepreneur, it is necessary to train the people who will do the business, politics and schools of tomorrow.”

Palazzo dei 500
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