Italy is the gateway to Europe, and was one of the founding members of the European Community in 1952. It is a member of G7 and, according to the World Bank in 2010, is the world’s eighth-ranking economic power in terms of its absolute nominal GDP and at the same time is in eighth place for the value of its exports, and in seventh for that of its imports.
The style and quality of Italian life, together with its well-known welcoming ambience, means that the experience of studying in Italy, even through learning the Italian language, is also a unique and unrepeatable adventure in terms of personal, cultural and professional growth.
The quality of Italian life is acclaimed one of the best in the world. As further proof of this, one should consider the various reports on health and in particular on the average life expectancy in Italy, estimated at 82 years (79 for men, 85 for women). The factors exerting a considerable effect on Italy’s general evaluation are its facilitated access to education, state support for health and social security, policies favoring the economy and the environment, the fine Italian cuisine, the near-absence of air pollution, the climate in general, cultural events, services at the disposal of foreigners and integration. Italian cuisine is one of the world’s healthiest, most balanced and most varied and refined. It is based around the evolution and perfection of agricultural and livestock-raising techniques. The culture of wine and food plays a fundamental role in Italy and there are ad hoc study courses for training new and competent professional figures in this culture. The Mediterranean diet, of which Italian cuisine is the principal and most important example, was awarded UNESCO cultural heritage status in 2010, owing to its balance and completeness.
Therefore, the topic of nourishment, together with that of energy, will be the leading theme of the Milan 2015 Expo.