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Italian information geographies

Société de l’information en Italie : regards géographiques. Avant-propos
Maria Paradiso
p. 179-180

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1A range of papers focusing on Italian cases of ICTs use and changes in society are presented here in this NETCOM issue. A national research group on Geography of Information Society was founded in 2007 and hosted by the Italian Geographical Society later evolved in a specialty group within AgeI, the Association of Italian Geographers. This issue brings together papers from members of the Italian specialty group along the general theme of Internet mediation in everyday life.

2A previous work in Italian explored the overall Italian information society, with a critical survey of national policies and pertinent recommendation for policies (Paradiso 2008): weakness factors in the Italian cases looked at the privileges of the incumbent for many years; the scarcity of broadband width (direct effect of the non competitive market) and operators in disadvantaged areas, the lack of attention to policies for universal access; polices approaches often conceived in terms of individual grants and incentives without ex post assessment and too generic targets; high fragmentations of measures and lack of clear organic vision for a bottom up approach and excessive regionalisation; lack of national ‘flagship projects’ to create a common platform, standards, applications, research and investments; moreover strategic catalysts of effects areas of investment such as the ‘next generation network’(until 2008 but still weakly and disappointing after then), generation and certification of new educational profiles and skills have been generally neglected. Not surprising that Italy is lagging behind many European countries despite the vitality of communities and citizens’ adoption and creative use.

3This edition of NETCOM brings together some of the issues practiced by local communities, citizens and users and in some cases tracks changes in society and people’s behaviour.

4The ways by which ICTs culturally affect people-environment relationships (hazard perception, citizen preparedness, relief, recovery, and resilience) is the core focus of Maria Paradiso’s paper. This paper attempts to extract an overarching model of people’s communications behaviour when coping with hazards and disasters along three ages: oral word, mass media mediation, and ICT mediation. The example of millenary eruptive human story of the Vesuvius is examined side by side to recent innovative applications of ICTs. The paper then presents an overarching model of coping with disasters and guidelines for ICT uses in a full disaster cycle.

5Lorena Rocca presents and discusses the PANDORA project in which she actively took part. PANDORA web tools, and on spot and on line methodologies experimented innovative forms of civic participation to city planning by also exploiting the potentialities of ICTs. PANDORA allowed to spread news and data about one's own town but also, most of all, to collect voices, perceptions, ideas and possible alternative ways towards sustainability.

6Giacomo Andreucci maps the distribution of the locally originated web TVs in Italy in order to investigate their ways of creating communication within the community and at the wider level of the global Internet network.

7Andrea Favretto critically examines digital mapping available on the Internet in terms of digital map cartographic quality. In particular, the WebGIS-made cartography is compared with the so called Mash-up site maps. These Websites often use the Google-base maps in order to produce their own cartography. The so-called Cloud Computing Internet issue which promoted a strong participation in the Internet is then briefly introduced, using the Application Programming Interface software (API), and giving birth to the Mash-up cartographic websites.

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Paradiso, M (2008), “Is Italy on line? Geographical Analysis of the Italian Information Society and assessment of Policies, BSGI-Bulletin of the Italian Geographical Society, 1, 305-343 (in Italian).

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Référence papier

Maria Paradiso, « Italian information geographies »Netcom, 24-3/4 | 2010, 179-180.

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Maria Paradiso, « Italian information geographies »Netcom [En ligne], 24-3/4 | 2010, mis en ligne le 29 mai 2013, consulté le 18 août 2022. URL : ; DOI :

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Maria Paradiso

Professor of Political and Economic Geography, Department of social, economic, geographical sciences SEGIS, University of Sannio, Piazza Arechi, 80100 Benevento,

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