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Greek Corner
MEdIES in the GAP Partner Network 1

Neroupoli, the Greek water-city

MARLISCO exhibition


First World Non-Formal Education Forum
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the Partners_Italian Ministry for the Environment and Territory

Italian Ministry for the Environment and Territory

Education for Environment and Sustainability
Activities of the Italian Ministry for the Environment and Territory

The Italian Ministry of Environment and Territory, as required by its institutive law (law 349/1986), is actively engaged in the field of education for environment and SD, especially focusing on promoting public awareness. Education is considered a crucial tool to support environmental and sustainable development policies, aiming at promoting public consciousness of environmental matters and behaviours in harmony with the nature and human beings.

In order to bring together the various actors involved in activities of environmental education, the National System for Environmental Education, Information and Training (INFEA) has been established in Italy. It is an innovative integrated system directly involving State and Regions in the programming and financing of initiatives. The System operates on the ground through a network of “Environmental Education Centres” (about 140 centres), established by local institutions and managed in cooperation with various stakeholders, like environmental associations, private enterprises, universities. The centres, some of them located within protected natural areas, promote and support projects of environmental education for various categories of learners. Projects for children are carried out within or in cooperation with schools, on specific themes like water, waste, air pollution etc. The activities carried out are focused, inter alia, on the dissemination of information on the local and global state of the environment, on the ways to achieve sustainable development objectives, the changes required in individual and collective behaviours; they operate in a synergetic way with the concrete measures of environmental policy. Recently, the centres have also undertaken the role of facilitating the dialogue between civil society and local administrators within Local Agenda 21 processes.

The Ministry for the Environment publishes every couple of years a national report on the state of environment. In 2002 an ad hoc version for kids of such report, named RSA Junior, has been produced for schools, aiming at promoting the environment-related knowledge in all its complexity. The main objective of this educational process is to avoid an approach based on the “sense of disaster” and to promote behaviours that lead to the prevention of environmental problems or, at least, to the identification of the best solutions to face them. http://www.minambiente.it/Sito/pubblicazioni/Collana_RSA/RSA_junior/RSAjunior_indice.asp

The role of school is fundamental, as the first context of personal growth and development of a correct and healthy behaviour. Education for sustainable development should neither only be a separate teaching subject, nor should it be identified by some specific contents, since it is a dynamic and cross-cutting process, interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary. It therefore requires the involvement of all relevant governmental sectors and stakeholders.
Well-structured inter-ministerial cooperation between the Ministry for the Environment and Territory and the Ministry of Education, University and Research is in place since 1987. It has leaded to a Chart of principles on environmental education, approved in Fiuggi in 1997 http://www.minambiente.it/SVS/biblioteca/cartaprincipi.htm.

On this basis the 1st national conference on environmental education has been jointly organised in year 2000 in Genoa; the second national conference will be held on 17-20 November 2004 in Tuscany (Lucca). An agreement between the two Ministries is under way, aimed at developing training programmes for teachers on the topic of sustainable development.

In year 2004 the Italian Ministry for Environment has become partner to the MEDIES Initiative (Mediterranean Education Initiative for Environment & Sustainability). The Italian version of the educational package “Water in the Mediterranean” has been presented during the “International Forum on Partnerships for Sustainable Development” held in Rome, 4-6 March 2004.

Among other initiatives promoted by Italian Ministry of Environment, the REC (Regional Environmental Centre for Central an Eastern Europe) project “UMANA DIMORA”, aiming at facilitating networking between environmental NGOs in South-Eastern Europe, includes training activities. http://www.rec.org/REC/Programs/SEE_Networking

Bilateral cooperation with China in the environmental sector includes a project for the creation of an environmental education centre and training for local authorities

Italy will host the 3rd world congress on environmental education in autumn 2005 in Turin.

For more information on the Italian Ministry for the Environment and Territory please visit http://www.minambiente.it/Sito/home.asp

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MEdIES Core Group


DG Env

GR Gov


Especialy for water issues

GWP med

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