Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, Stanford University, Resources for the Future Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei Stanford University Resources for the Future post 2012 climate policy




About the City


Venice is considered among the most beautiful and best preserved cities in the world, unique in the fact that it is the only city in the world built on water. The city earned its name of La Serenissima, the most serene, as throughout the city’s remarkably stable history Venice favoured neutrality and peace when possible. Today the city’s peaceful atmosphere is due to the complete absence of cars. Boats provide the only means of transport along a system of over one hundred and fifty canals. For those who prefer to explore the city on foot, more than 430 bridges connect the canals and streets or calle together.

Central Venice is divided into six sestieri, or administrative districts, three on each side of the Grand Canal. On the northern side is Cannaregio, to the east Castello and in the centre the San Marco sestiere, boasting the beautiful Piazza San Marco. Santa Croce, San Polo and Dorsoduro are on the southern side of the bank. San Giorgio Maggiore (the conference venue), Giudecca and Lido are separate islands, as are Torcello, Murano (where glass is produced), and Burano (where lace is historically made). There are over 100 islands in the lagoon, with an ever declining population of 120,000. Tourists swell this number to around 25 million each year.
Please visit the useful links for further general information.


The Veneto region was part of the Roman Empire until the barbarian invasions of the 5th and 6th centuries forced much of the population to retreat toward the coastline and marshy islands of the lagoon. The islands fell under Byzantine rule until 726 when Venetians elected their first Doge and achieved autonomy.
With a booming spice trade, luxury and ship building industries, Venice quickly became an important trading city and naval power. Despite recurring wars with Genoa and the Turks, Venice began to expand on mainland Italy and down the Eastern coast of the Adriatic.
However, Venice was powerless to defend itself against Napoleon. Soon after it found itself under the rule of the punitive Austrian Empire. In 1866, Venice became part of the Italian state.
Visit Venice Escape website for an in-depth guide through history of Venice.

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