Unipd Representative Office opened in Guangzhou and guided tour of Nora for the President of the People’s Republic of China

November 17, 2016

The President of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping, visited on Wednesday, November 16, the archaeological site of Nora, in the south of Sardinia, accompanied by the Director of the Department of Cultural Heritage of the University of Padova, Professor Jacopo Bonetto. In Europe for institutional meetings, the Chinese President, together with 12 ministers, chose to include a tour of the site where cultural heritage experts of the University of Padova have been researching for 25 years. 

The Chinese delegation (counting over 100 people) was guided through the archeological site also virtually, thanks to the 3D reconstruction of the ancient town of Nora. This was possible thanks to the collaboration of the University of Padova with Ikon, a company located in Gorizia. Assisting the tour, as guides, were Professor Jacopo Bonetto, together with Arturo Zara and Kim Anne Barchi of the University of Padova.

It is a strong signal of the further broadening of the relations between the universities of Padova and China, especially Guangzhou University, where the recently opened office is located.

The opportunity to offer a guided tour of site of Nora arose thanks to the visit that the Rector, Rosario Rizzuto, undertook last week in China.

The permanent representative office of the University of Padova, opened at the presence of the Rector Rizzuto, Vice-rector for International Relations, Alessandro Paccagnella, Delegate for East Asia and China, Denis Bastieri, will serve as a reference point for the whole of the far East Asia and as a hub of the University of Padova - but also of other Italian Universities - for China and its neighbouring countries. The aim is to spread Italian culture and knowledge, promoting the exchange of students, researchers, faculty members. This is the best way to create and promote innovation and expertise.

Three main macro areas are the base of the collaboration: civil and construction engineering, cultural and architectural heritage, astrophysics and big data management. The rich Italian cultural heritage and experience in the field inspired the guided visit of the Chinese delegation to Nora, where the archaeologists of Padova are at home. However, Sardinia does not only represent cultural heritage for the University of Padova: it is a mixture of proficiency, particularly in the field of engineering and geoscience.

"This, for almost 800 years now, has been one of the key strengths of our University - says Rizzuto - the interactive nature of knowledge, that manages to join, sometimes even physically, all fields of research, from humanities to science. From this on-going exchange, the best and most innovative ideas are generated, with the ability to look at the past, at our deep-rooted tradition, with the aim to anticipate and face the challenges of the future". With regard to cultural heritage, and more in general to the protection and preservation of art and culture, the idea is to set up a research centre joining the expertise of the universities of Guangzhou and Padova.

Visit of rector Rosario Rizzuto and his delegation to the University of Guangzhou, P.R. China

The President of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping during his visit to the archeological site of Nora in Sardinia, Italy

Jacopo Bonetto accompanies the delegation during the visit to the archaeological site, using the virtual reality visualizers