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When we launched the #salvaiciclisti campaign, well before the birth of and Bikenomist, one of the criticisms that was most often directed at our call for more bicycle-friendly cities was that Italy is not the Netherlands or even Denmark and that our country was too culturally backward to accept a paradigm shift.

As difficult as it was, in the end we had to admit that indeed our country suffered and still suffers from a problem of cultural backwardness compared to other northern European countries: Italian citizens are reluctant to accept any means of transportation other than the automobile as legitimate, and this way of thinking is so ingrained that even local engineers and administrators, instead of wondering how to move the greatest number of people in the shortest time possible, still wonder how to allow the greatest number of cars to circulate. All without realizing that those who work, those who go to school, those who wish to travel and those who vote are not cars but are people.

In the face of this realization, we realized that the only way to change the way we get around in our cities is through education, not only of citizens, but also and especially of the political class that is called upon to decide how to distribute public finances allocated to mobility and the allocation of public space.

We have realized that the only way to instill doubt and form sensitivity is through good example, demonstrating not only that change is useful, but that it also brings benefits to those who implement them and those affected by them.

That is why we decided to give birth to CosmoBike Mobility, an event that was born in four hands with the Verona Fair and is now in its second edition this year.

We have selected 90 speakers from among the leading Italian and foreign experts on the topics of soft mobility and public space and organized them into 18 sessions that will enliven the Fair from September 14 to 16.

At this gathering we will demonstrate the economic return on investment in cycling and the importance of a discipline as unknown in Italy as traffic psychology. We will show the good practices implemented in the municipalities of Fano and London, Lodi and Gothenburg, Reggio Emilia and Vitoria-Gasteiz, Bari and Amsterdam to make sure that these are an inspiration to our administrators and that someone finally finds the courage to experiment in our country as well what is now an established normality in the rest of Europe.

Without doing it on purpose, we ended up creating the largest event in Europe dedicated to the topic of new urbanism and urban cycling. But we are convinced that this is no accident: we need to hold such a large event because Italy has so much to learn to catch up with the rest of Europe on the urban mobility front.

One step after another we will make Italy a bicycle-friendly country.

To view the CosmoBike Mobility program:

Pinar Pinzuti

Cycling Brainwasher

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