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“The Future of Water Civilizations – Venice lagoon and Mekong delta”

Organised as part of the cycle “1600 years of Venice. History, Architecture, City” by University IUAV in Venice, in collaboration with Venice City Council, Embassy of Italy to Vietnam, National University of Ho Chi Minh City and Thuy loi University Hanoi.

The 1600th anniversary of Venice’s legendary foundation is the opportunity to reflect on a city that has continued to highlight its role as a model even during the pandemic. Venice is not only the place where art and architecture, urban form and landscape are uniquely combined, but it is also a city that has developed over the centuries in a sustainable way, ensuring human-scale dimension, quality of public spaces, resilience to natural phenomena.

To celebrate 1600 years from Venice foundation, IUAV University of Venice, in collaboration with Venice city council and Italian embassies and universities around the world, has presented a series of webinars dedicated to the architecture.

In Vietnam, the 1600 years from the foundation of Venice will be marked by the webinar “THE FUTURE OF WATER CIVILIZATIONS – Venice lagoon and Mekong delta” addressing and comparing the evolution and the perspectives of the two historical civilization relying on water resources in the framework of the ongoing Climate Change scenarios.

The Mekong Delta is one of the largest deltas in the world and is considered the most productive agricultural and aquaculture area of Vietnam. Water is a vital resource for sustaining the diverse ecosystems and supporting the livelihoods of approximately 18 million inhabitants. Currently, water resources are extremely vulnerable to the effects of upstream flow changes, sea-level rise, wastewater release, and climate changes. Severe drought and salinity intrusion remain key challenges to water stress in the dry season. Adaptation strategies are needed to mitigate the water-related risks for a safe, prosperous, and sustainable Delta. The Po river Delta in Italy, overlooked by the Venice lagoon, is affected by similar threats, which affect most deltas in the world.

The Venice’s Lagoon represents an interesting case study for water associated urbanized areas. Its apparent fragility, which contrasts with its durability over time, makes it a “natural” environment maintained artificially. The constant work to integrate land and water is one of the great environmental challenges shared by many areas of the world. The phenomenon of high water that frequently occurs in Venice has led the Italian Government to develop a sophisticated technical, engineering, architectural and landscape solution, e.g. the MOSE system. A unique feature of the MOSE is that the barrier against high tide, when not in operation, is totally invisible.

The Webinar will take place on Thursday 16 September at 15.30 (GMT+7)