WELCOME ADDRESS OF THE VICE-RECTOR
Let me welcome you on behalf of my colleagues and of the whole staff of the School of Advanced Studies IUSS Pavia. I would like to take this opportunity to underscore the importance of your choice, and of our responsibility in sharing this educational and scientific experience, and to suggest a synthetic key for you to get acquainted with the core of our offer of courses.
In a world undergoing deep changes, for the first time in the history of our civilization, advanced education is no longer characterized by the difficulty of getting information, but rather, by the need to sort out the few relevant pieces of information from the mass of those that are available and accessible. The choice to live the experience of a further educational path in addition to the standard university one is therefore marked by new and important features.
First of all, the School of Advanced Studies IUSS Pavia, thanks to its synergism with the long-established and prestigious curricular education provided by the University of Pavia, enjoys unique freedom in its teaching approach: the subjects we choose to bring to your attention do not suffer the ties (however essential they may be) of the degree courses. They can range across selected domains, and adjusted to emerging, rapidly modifying cultural stimuli. Furthermore, the organizational structure of our School and the low number of teachers and students involved naturally allow the (largely hoped for) pulling down of disciplinary fences, which still survive as academic encrustations, so that integrated approaches to traditionally separate branches of learning become the rule. Finally, the rich experimental and theoretical activities of the research centers of our School, carried out in connection with a network of Advanced Schools and well renowned international institutions, will lead to close contacts with highly reputed scholars and will train you to look at Europe and at the whole world as the scenery of the choices you will be going to make.
You will soon realize that, in line with this approach, we have avoided all-embracing pannings in order to focus on subjects mirroring both our peculiarities and our ability to attract resources.
Let me make it clear: a study experience in our Advanced School is no doubt a very demanding one. You will be tested along a path requiring commitment, rigor and reliability, and that is why you are entitled to ask for reliability, rigor and commitment from us.
But bridles do not trigger culture, but rather they are just an essential condition to avoid waste and disappointment. We, who teach and do research in the School, are convinced that the real triggers of ideas are actually others, namely curiosity about nature and history, amazement at the world as it is, and fantasy.
All in all, in our view it is these three ingredients that justify the passion which spurred us in the beginning and continues to spur our individual and team choices. We will place them all at your disposal, in order for them to become the basis of your passion and your choices.
Our hope is that you will leave this School with many answers, but most of all, with even more questions: the new questions that will mark the cultural development and the improvement of the social condition of all of us. This is, in the end, the true meaning of the hearty welcome that accompanies this Guide to the standard courses of the next academic year.