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The ‘Port City Instawalk’ initiative in Taranto thanks to students of ‘Liceo Aristosseno’

The ‘Port City Instawalk’ initiative in Taranto thanks to students of ‘Liceo Aristosseno’


In 2022, the Port System Authority of the Ionian Sea – Port of Taranto (AdSPMI) started a collaboration with Liceo Ginnasio Statale ‘Aristosseno’, an upper secondary school in Taranto, in the framework of the ‘Pathway for Transversal Skills and Orientation (PCTO)’ agreement, a three-year project (2022-2024) involving students of two classes aged between 16 and 18.

Within the PCTO, students have been and still are the protagonists of a pathway aimed to develop thorough knowledge and understanding of port culture. Along this journey, the port of Taranto opens up to young people with its history and potential.  The PCTO’s distinguishing objective is to strengthen the cultural link between Taranto and the port city of Brest (France) – already united by a decades-long twinning since 1964 – also through a school twinning between Taranto’s Liceo Aristosseno and Brest’s Lycée de l’Harteloire. This is with a view to fostering international cooperation among young people by providing new social and cultural stimuli for students.

For the PCTO’s second year, the teachers have decided to focus project activities on the ‘sustainability‘, with training meetings at ‘Liceo Aristosseno’ as well as in the port, at AdSPMI’s headquarters, and online. In one these meetings, held on 9 February, students from the two schools joined together in debate during a lecture that saw the valuable virtual participation of José SANCHEZ – Director of Agenda AIVP 2030, Projects and Content Member of the Management Committee of AIVP, Association Internationale Villes et Ports  based in Le Havre.

On that occasion, José SANCHEZ illustrated to the students the AIVP’s Agenda 2030, an initiative for bringing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals – a global action plan aimed at 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – specifically into the port sector through the development of 10 goals entirely aimed to enhancing the relationship between citizens and the port and enabling citizens to effectively help the sustainable growth of the port system.

Jose Sanchez explained to the students that the physical dimension of such a development model is well represented by Port Centers. These are places for disseminating port culture and since years, they have been poles of cultural attraction in the main port cities worldwide. In particular, the Port Center of Le Havre was presented. It is located within the port of Le Havre and works for citizens to develop direct knowledge of the port and its world by engaging in an increasingly close dialogue with them.

Mr Sanchez then presented the main innovative actions promoted by Port Centers through the eyes and voices of young people. Actions include the ambitious Port City Instawalk’ project conceived and started in Rotterdam by Maurice Jansen, senior researcher at the Erasmus Centre for Urban, Ports and Transport Economics (UPT), Erasmus University Rotterdam. Pioneers and supporters of the Instawalk project were groups of students from the University of Le Havre who, through interactive work, created Instagram accounts displaying significant and representative photo shoots made by them to tell the emotions, actions and criticalities that are typical of the connection point between the city and its port. In this way, they have added to the port vision, which before this initiative was quite limited. This highly participative experience has allowed students and followers to familiarise themselves with the port, learn about its history, challenges and development projects, through images, stories and interviews with port operators, thus fuelling their creativity and knowledge.

In Taranto, students enthusiastically welcomed Josè’s proposal to follow the example of Le Havre University’s students, with the promise to shoot photos in Taranto and Brest and post them on a purposely created Instagram, to tell and promote their cities and ports.

We just have to wait for the next meetings to learn more about the Italian-French project and, in particular, to discover the two port cities through the eyes and words of young students!


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