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Digital Technology and Networking: the inaugural lesson of ISPM 2020 focused on the future path of Project Management

inaugural lesson ispm 2020

The ISPM, the school for Project Managers of the CoEHAR, opens its second edition with an online inaugural lesson to welcome all the students and speakers. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the School has been postponed to March 2021, but an online inaugural lesson has been held on 8 October with the moderation of the project coordinator, Daniela Saitta.

The event has been attended by 30 students connected from 20 different countries, the highest authorities of the University of Catania, the institutional representatives of the CoEHAR and the 7 speakers of the new edition of ISPM, which counts on the start of an important collaboration with the PMI- SIC, the Southern Italy Chapter of the Project Management Institute, the most important association of Project Managers worldwide, founded in 1969 in Philadelphia (USA), with around 600,000 members.

This partnership has provided additional depth to the program of the school: alongside the contributions from the speakers of the previous edition, such as Rosario Faraci, Lorenzo Vetrano, Denise Stevens, the students met their new teachers from the PMI-SIC, Giacomo Franco, Edoardo Grimaldi and Paolo Fidelbo, ready to be part of this stimulating project.

The spirit of internationalization and the added value coming from the different countries involved have been remarked by the Pro-Rector of the University of Catania, Vania Patanè, and by Francesca Longo, Delegate of the Rector to the International Affairs, who stressed the relevance of such a stratified and multicultural network to perform a high-level research.

Prof. Riccardo Polosa, CoEHAR Founder and award winning and renowned expert in respiratory health and tobacco harm reduction, added: “In the next 10 years, the demand of qualified project managers will increase by 45%. The project management is an interesting and stimulating job: no surprise that so 140 peoples applied for the school”.

Derek Yach, President of the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World, attended the event to address the future of tobacco control and harm reduction strategies: in the current scenario, digital technology is a tool useful to enhance scientific research, especially in this specific field. He invited the students to be ready to act and consider all the changes that are undergoing in the field.  

During the event, two former student of the ISPM, Marta Mangione and Hesham Nasr, provided evidence that the school can turn out to be a real working opportunity: both of them are indeed currently involved in CoEHAR projects as junior project managers, and are having the real opportunity to work with international partners that share the same mission in tobacco harm reduction. 

Creating an international network, boosting the innovation of project management in the field of harm reduction and providing up-to-date contents in the ISPM Community (an online forum where former and current students and speakers can share information and opportunities) make the ISPM a young, but competitive reality in the world.

To close the lesson, all the students had the chance to introduce themselves: project managers, researchers, PHD students from 20 different countries confirmed that, despite the situation, they are more than ready to jump into this exciting experience, ready to confront other professionals coming from all over the world.

Next stop: Sicily, March 2021. 

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