🇮🇹 Consiglio della Provincia Autonoma di Trento
“Visite Guidate Smart”
29/09/2021 – 31/05/2022
Type of initiative
Short description of the initiative
The Council of the Autonomous Province of Trento has been engaged for years in the activity of promoting its functions through the organization of “guided tours”, addressed to a plurality of subjects, such as students and elder groups of people, with the purpose of offering an insight into the history, traditions and culture of our Autonomous Province. In recent years, due to the Covid-19 crisis, the Council decided to continue promoting the initiatives in a different and unique way. The Pandemic lockdown led the Council to reorganize the structure of the guided tours, introducing new elements and new interaction methods with the classes, all through online-meetings. The idea was to structure a guided tour that focuses not only on a discussion with a member of the council but also on different aspects of the history, culture, and traditions of our territory.
For this reason, the Council cooperated with several stakeholders who contributed to arrange and present topics related to the specific institutional set-up of the province, the historical and cultural framework and many more.
The online guided tour consists of a two hours activity. During the first part, the students have the opportunity to dialogue with one of the 35 members of the Autonomous Council of the Province of Trento, while the second part focuses on one of the in-depth nine modules: from the history of Alcide Degasperi, to the relationship of our Province with the European Union, from a guided tour in the Italian Constitution, to the peace and human rights focus.
The online meetings gave the chance to more than 3400 students and more than 190 classes, from elementary schools to high schools, to understand the values, history and the importance of our Autonomy in a national and European environment. In 2021 there was an increase of 61% in the number of attending students compared to the previous year, that counted 2109 presences.
Main features of the initiative
The format consisted of a first part in which a councillor presented the activities and functions of the Council followed by a Q&A between the guest and the students. During the second part of the meeting the specific theme chosen by the classes among nine different special in-depth modules, are presented by the experts-
The meetings started with an introductory video that explained the history of our territory and the basic idea behind the provincial institutional organization.
The council Press office created two different videos, one for elementary classes and the other one for the middle and high schools.
For every 130 online meetings during the school-year 2021/2022 in the first part there was one councillor, paying attention to balance the presences between the different political parties.
After the video and a little presentation of the councillor, students presented themselves, asked questions and interacted with the councillor in charge. The aim was to raise awareness of the role played by politicians in nowadays society. Many students asked questions about the career, the workload, the activities on the territory of the councillor, and the role of Euregio, that is the European region across Italy and Austria.
In order to encourage student participation, different communication styles were adopted, based on the different levels of education, and also different themes were discussed
The topic of the second part was chosen by each class between nine modules.
In high school these kinds of themes are included within the teaching of the so-called “Educazione civica e alla cittadinanza”. “Civic education” is a teaching introduced by Law n. 92 of 20 August 2019 in Italy, which aims to “Form responsible and active citizens by promoting full and conscious participation in the civic, cultural and social life of communities, in compliance with the rules, rights and duties”. Civic education focuses on topics such as the Italian Constitution, EU institutions and international bodies, flag and national anthem, statutes of regions with ordinary and special autonomy, and so on.
With this in focus, the press office of the Council of Trento proposed the following modules:
- “Autonomia nella figura di Alcide De Gasperi”: Promoted by the public foundation “Alcide De Gasperi”, it gives students specific knowledge about the life of Alcide De Gasperi, first head of the Council of the Republic of Italy, one the fathers of the EU. De Gasperi was a man of dialogue and one of the main characters of the history of the autonomy in our Trentino.
- “Autonomia e arte: la Sala Depero”: thanks to the staff of the press office, students can have a virtual tour to the old Council Hall “Sala Depero”, one of the most beautiful conference room in Trentino.
- “Autonomia e Costituzione”: During this hour, students focus on the most important articles of our Constitution, the history of the mothers and Fathers of the Republic that designed the Italian Constitution.
- “Autonomia e Europa”: This module is offered by Europe Direct Trentino, one of the local information offices that distributes information and advice about EU policies and promotes local and regional debate about the EU. Through this module students learn together the benefits of being European citizens and the opportunities the EU offers to young people. In 2022 the Foundation “Antonio Megalizzi” will provide another module regarding European institutions.
- “Autonomia e diritti umani”: This module is promoted by the “Forum per la pace e i diritti umani”, an organism of the Council of the Province of Trento. The experts provide students with critical and informed thinking about different topical issues such as the human rights situation in the world, the arms trade and the Sustainable Development Agenda of the United Nations.
- “Capire l’Autonomia. Storia, territorio, istituzioni”: The members of the Foundation “Museo storico del Trentino”, through a series of questions, explore the history and geography of Trentino.
- “Autonomia e ambiente”: This module focuses on the natural environment of the Alps. Over a third of Trentino’s territory is included in a conservation area. This module is offered by “Reti di riserva Brenta” and “Natura 2000” and focuses on the Sustainable Development Goals of the Agenda 2030. It also allows students to understand the importance of preserving and protecting the environment.
- “Autonomia nell’attualità”: This module is offered by the Legal office of the Council of Trento and gives an overview of the legal and institutional framework of autonomy in comparison with the other Italian regions, the Constitution and our Special Statute.
- “Autonomia e minoranze linguistiche”: We live in a region where Italian and German traditions live together. We live in a territory with 3 different linguistic minorities: ladini, mocheni and cimbri. Through this module students can understand how traditions, languages and different cultures coexist. This module is organized by the Authority for Linguistic Minorities of Trento.
Rarely do students have the chance to interact with institutional figures as provincial councillors. Guided tours give the opportunity to the young generations to deepen their knowledge of the functioning of our institutional setting and issues related to the administration of the territory.
Role of the assembly in the success of the initiative
The management of the guided tours has always been coordinated by the Council, in particular by the Council’s Press Office. The idea of organizing online guided tours is the result of close cooperation between the Presidential Office and the offices of the Provincial Council, in order to bring the young generation closer to the history of our Autonomy. The project was also very appreciated by all the provincial councillors who participated to the online meetings.
The modules on “Peace and Human Rights”, “Linguistic Minorities” and “Autonomy in the Present” were provided by offices of the Provincial Council.
The staff of the Council was involved in the organization and management of all the phases of the project.
An added value is represented by the presence of three young people (20, 22 and 25 years old) in “Servizio Civile – SCUP” who contributed to the arrangement of the process. Scup is a project set up by the Province of Trento that permits young people from 18 to 28 to approach the world of work. Website: serviziocivile.provincia.tn.it
European orientation of the initiative
The purpose of the online guided tours organized by the Council is to bring younger generations closer to politics and institutions; this project offers the opportunity to explore the history of our territory, our origins and the socio-economic context. Especially noteworthy is the fact that the European Union declared 2022 the European Year of Youth; with this in focus, the Council of the Autonomous Province of Trento offers the opportunity to young people to learn and move forward with confidence in a post-pandemic perspective.
It is also impossible to talk about institutions without mentioning the European Union. Nowadays the European dimension permeates and affects our societies; for this reason, one of the in-depth modules is entirely focused on the history and impact of the European Union on our everyday life. Moreover, the European framework is addressed in the module “Autonomia e ambiente” (Natura 2000) and “Autonomia e diritti umani” (Agenda 2030).