GovernaTI-VA: learning about Public Governance with the students of Università della Svizzera italiana

Institutional Communication Service

The bachelor course of the Faculty of Economics on "Public Administration, Non-Profit Sector and Sustainable Development" held by Prof. Marco Meneguzzo, Professor of Public and Non-Profit Management at USI, and Paolo Crugnola, Department of Education, Culture and Sport - Institute for Continuing Education, opened the doors of its classroom, albeit virtually, to the Interreg V 2014-2021 cross-border cooperation project: GovernaTI-VA.

The lecture held in streaming took place on Monday, 26 April 2021, featuring Marzio della Santa, Head of Section of Local Authorities (SEL) - Canton Ticino and Silvia Pozzi, Program Manager of GovernaTIVA. The discussion revolved around the changes in the way public authorities "govern". What repercussions do these changes have on organisational structures, on the logic of intervention, on the skills of those who work in public administrations?

Following this leitmotif, the discussion focused on public governance, sharing with the students the experiences of our guests in the field: "every reform starts from a certain idea of what the role of the local authority in society should be. This role changes and evolves. Today we assume that municipal authorities must take care of the quality of residential life of the citizens and businesses located in its region. We are asking ourselves how the size, tasks and logic of operation must change to serve this role best", underlined Marzio Della Santa, who, in his role as Head of Local Government Section, is promoting important reform programmes concerning local authorities, "the debate with the students, with their questions, was also instrumental in understanding what the visions and expectations of the younger generations concerning public institutions are: they have an important role in outlining the work of municipal authorities in the near future". Silvia Pozzi, who is coordinating with Swiss and Italian partners the Interreg GovernaTIVA project, which aims at strengthening cross-border governance through the development of skills and models of local government, reiterates how: "the afternoon spent with the students of the three-year course in Economics in PA, the non-profit sector and sustainable development, was stimulating. Every opportunity to take a different look at one's work is stimulating. With Marzio Della Santa, we talked with the students about how we perceive public administration, and we were able to add to the theoretical definitions some direct experience. For my part, I was struck by the desire of these students to explore the more intangible aspects of governance, those in which soft skills and negotiation support processes that are not always easy to grasp. With the excellent conduction of Manuela Barreca and Paolo Crugnola, the dialogue was lively, and the atmosphere relaxed, allowing students and speakers to significantly delve into some of the aspects of Public Administration that are difficult to find in books".

The success of the initiative also emerged from the students' feedback, who, in their words, highlighted their curiosity and interest in coming into contact with the professionals working in the public sector today.


Follow the project GovernaTIVA (link in italian):