Intefe is a national journalism initiative promoted in Ferrara from Italian magazine Internazionale (http://www.internazionale.it).
When my very good friend and future colleague Massi, who is studying communication in Milan at the moment, and my sister told me about the festival back in August we were all decided to go.
And I must say it was a brilliant idea, not only because it gave us the chance to gather together the people we love and spend three days together, but also because it was extremely interesting.
Before to go, I didn’t actually know what to expect, probably because I didn’t even get time to think about what to expect.
I just booked my flights and thought a bit about how it would have been: probably a lot of it in Italian, conferences about technical aspects of journalism and current affairs, loads of opinions flying from a part of the city to another.
Briefly speaking, I imagined it to be a sort of festival of journalism Italian style, where politics is always very welcome to get involved and sometimes facts become a nice option that the journalist couldeventually take into consideration while writing the article.
I must say: I was very wrong this time.
First of all, the topics of the conferences were so various and disparate that I guess almost everyone would have been able to find something to be interested in.
Us for example attended an interview by Michael Braun of Die Tageszeitung, an American reporter of The Times Rachel Donadio and another Italian journalist of The Financial Times Ferdinando Giuliano to the President of Senate Pietro Grasso, a conference about Medics Sans Frontieres’ Rony Brauman.
being interview from Gad Lerner and followed by a short movie from Peter Casaer about the work of Medics Sans Frontieres, a conference about Start Ups featuring some start uppers based in Italy but also around Europe
and an amazing conferences hosting the Editor in chief of Le Monde Natalie Nougayrede, Stephen Engelberg of ProPublica and two Italian journalist, one a radio presenter of Rai Radio3 Marino Sinibaldi who was the moderator and the other Giovanni De Mauro from Internazonale.
If the first one was in Italian, the second one was partially in English and the third and last conference of the entire festival was completely in English.
This surprised me a lot, as Italians are not so keen to their language as French people are, but simply they are not good enough in English to attend conferences on such topics in that language and hope to understand more than half of them.
There were head cuffs with simultaneous translations and there were quite a few people using them, but still! The fact that journalists from all over the world were having dialogues in Italian, English but also French and Spanish surprised me a lot and made me feel proud of us little Italians finally gazing at the world around us..
It was a great experience and even if the rainy and cold weather didn’t allow the conferences to be made open air which sometimes made it hard as huge lines were always welcoming people at the entrance of the venues, in the end it was not a big deal.
Actually, it gave us the chance to get inside of some of the most beautiful buildings in Ferrara such as the Law Faculty and its frescos
and the Theatre.
The hardest thing?
Choosing the conferences to go to among all of them.In fact, sometimes there were so many interesting things happening more or less at the same time and in different parts of the city that despite the fun size of the city centre it was just impossible to make it from one to another.
But as I said, I was very happy with the choices we made and delighted to get the chance to listen to so many different voices speaking about different topics with completely different approaches, sometimes depending on the nationality of the speaker himself.