Florence is getting ready to host the third edition of Unity in Diversity, the platform undersigned by Mayors from over 60 countries, whose contribution led to the success of the past two editions. This year we will open the conference on November 7th 2017, in Palazzo Vecchio, home of Florence City Hall and we shall close it on November 8th at the Casina Pio IV in the Vatican, thanks to the gracious invitation of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.
We are therefore delighted to request the honour of your presence, together with our colleagues and friends who have been invited to join our committee this year, the Honourable Mayors Mr. Seifallah Lasram, Mayor of Tunis and Mr. Yiorgos Kaminis, Mayor of Athens.
This edition will focus on Dialogue in the Mediterranean. Mayors will discuss issues related to economic development, climate change and environment policies. Furthermore, as we all bear in mind that the quest for natural resources and their control are the primary cause of most conflicts, Peace and Intercultural Dialogue will necessarily be the thread through which these topics will be analysed and discussed.
Scholars, economists, Nobel Laureates, high UN and European representatives as well as national government leaders will interact, like in previous editions, with the Mayors, who will have the opportunity to discuss priorities and devise strategies in specific work sessions.
The resulting final platform will be presented to the Holy Father, Pope Francis, who has been invited to our closing session.
As we all very well know, the impact of both political and economic stability in the Mediterranean has become crucial not only for Europe but also for global stability and security. Today more than ever, swift and incisive actions at all levels are imperative.
For all these reasons, a culture of dialogue remains a prerequisite for coexistence amongst communities, in our shared belief that real dialogue can start from cities, as living cells of a macro-system, capable of reconciling a torn humanity.
We look forward to working together for the future of our communities next November in Florence.
Mayor of Florence