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THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 2015 www.italoamericano.org 3 NEWS & FEATURES TOP STORIES PEOPLE EVENTS F.R: I feel very connected and very proud. First of all, although I left Italy more than 15 years ago, I travel there very often. Nowadays I would say that on average I go back to Italy every other month: for a book-tour, a theater performance (I do theater t o o ) , a c o n f e r e n c e , e t c . S o I never really "dis-connected". Moreover in my life in the US I t e n d t o h a v e l o t s o f I t a l i a n friends, in San Francisco and in New York. I eat Italian food. I go to the Metropolitan Opera. I speak Italian to my Italian wife. Who wouldn't be proud to be an Italian? Of course I am ashamed when I read about corruption scandals, and there have been q u i t e a l o t r e c e n t l y . A l s o , I believe that the economic situa- tion is still weak, which is why so many young Italians come to the US looking for a job. L.P: Silicon Valley hosts many Italian talents that often e n d u p s t a y i n g t h e r e . H o w much longer can Italy afford to lose its best intelligence? What could the country system do to become more attractive? F.R: I have many young Italian friends in the Silicon Valley. First of all, I don't think they are "lost" forever. Some of them, after having a successful experience in research and inno- vation, after creating their own start-ups, sometimes will invest back in Italy. Today the geo- graphical location of your com- pany doesn't mean that you're stuck forever in a specific coun- try. Of course Italy has many things to do in order to create more opportunities for our young people. The most impor- tant one we call meritocracy. I hear lots of young Italians com- plaining that they could not get a university job or a research assignment because the son, the daughter, the nephew of some powerful "Professore" got an unfair advantage in the selection process. Bureaucracy, over-regu- lation, are also mentioned as obstacles, as well as the slow pace of civil justice, which means that if a customer or busi- ness partner doesn't pay you what they owe you, you might wait for years before the justice system will settle the issue. L.P: Since you taught at U.C. Berkley, where do you think the National Academy System lacks in order to be competitive? F.R: My university experi- ence is very limited. More than a decade ago while living in San Francisco I was occasionally a visiting professor at UC Berkeley, both for the Italian Department and European Program (I taught a seminar on the European Union), and also at the School of Journalism when Orville Schell was the Dean. Afterwards while living in China I had brief experiences as a visit- ing professor at Shanghai University of Economics and Finance. More recently I have taught at seminars and webinars at the Bocconi MBA in Milan. But it's not my main job, and I spend too little time teaching, for me to be able to compare differ- ent systems. I believe that Italy has excellent universities, and I can say it on the basis of evi- dence: young Italians who come to the US are very successful, they receive scholarships, they get research grants, they are hired by the best US universities. It's a reward for their talent, of course, but they must have received also a good education back in Italy. L.P: Starting with the idea of collective sharing, we have now arrived to personal data control. Just a few days ago, Tim Cook ironically said: "pri- vacy is endangered" at Bocconi University. Where is this lead- ing us? F.R: Tim Cook should know. The company that he leads, Apple, is actively endangering our privacy. Same as Google, Facebook, Amazon. You name it. They are all in the business of stealing our personal data in order to market their product to us, and also to re-sale those information to others. I have written a book on this issue, it's "Rete Padrona," a title, which you could translate as "The Masters of the Web." It's also an autobiographical book: I com- pare the libertarian and egalitari- an dreams of the Silicon Valley that I knew 20 years ago, to the reality of today's digital behe- moth. They have re-created a very unfair capitalistic system, with the same inequalities that we tended to associate with the Old Economy, Wall Street. L.P: It is often said that China is in contraposition to the United States, which raises the fear that the two countries opposing interests may lead to a potential WWIII. Having lived in both realities, do you believe this scenery is possi- ble? F.R: In the long term there will be a growing rivalry between the incumbent super- power and the emerging chal- lenger, I have no doubt about that. But China until now has shown some restraint at least in the use of military power. They have fought "only" four wars since the beginning of the People's Republic (1949): in Tibet, Korea, India and Vietnam. The last one was in 1979. There has been no Chinese military intervention for 36 years. China will challenge the American leadership in many ways, but war is not inevitable. Continued from page 2 Italian journalist Federico Rampini

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