Nicoletta Stame and I like to think ourselves as Italian scholars that work for the world – a noble tradition that in Italy exists since the Middle-Ages. We worked in various countries. We followed (and follow) the Colorni-Hirschman outlook (as we understand it) for the simple reason that it is the most convincing one we came across in our scientific life. We are now over 80 years old and our desire is to put things in order, before saying “bye, bye”.
When we met Albert and Sarah Hirschman, we were in our 40s, with some professional and political experience already developed. Luca started busily working with Albert, editing four books by him in Italian (two anthologies and two collections of essays) and publishing a monograph, Discovering the Possible, that was translated into English and Spanish. Back to Italy, we wanted to apply those ideas to the Center-South reality of the country. Therefore we worked and developed them accordingly – from the Universities (of Rome, Calabria, Naples, Messina and Bari) to the territories, coop, SMEs, enterprises, third sector, local and government institutions etc. The result is that together with some improvements, we have been able to raise in the Colorni-Hirschman applied tradition a good number of directors, managers, entrepreneurs, professionals etc.
Lately, after Albert’s departure, to avoid disbanding his influence, we put up the A Colorni-Hirschman International Institute that is completely self-financed: by us, by a group of ex-pupils and by Entopan (a high tech corporation that miraculously sprung up in Calabria and that provides us with legal, administrative and technical support).
Actually our small Institute is not in competition with anybody. Our intention has been, is and will always be the reverse. We call ourselves "A Colorni-Hirschman International Institute" and not "The C-HII" because of that. I.e.: we welcome any initiative, in whatever form and content, that calls attention to the remarkable turn of the mind and way of thinking stemming from the work of Eugenio Colorni and Albert Hirschman. If necessary, we help it and adjust to it.
The Conferences on Albert Hirschman Legacy we have been able to organize in Boston, Washington and Berlin had no grant whatsoever on their back. And the same will be for the next one to be held in Bogotà. As it is clear from the e-books of the Conferences, the applied part of Colorni-Hirschman outlook turns out to be as important as the academic one. This is indeed the main attraction of our work.Luca Meldolesi