The term “public engagement” describes a panoply of programmes aimed at sharing academic training and research even with those who have no work- or study-related ties to the university. For this reason, these efforts are a way of engaging the public. This is a crucial element for establishing and strengthening an open dialogue and a solid working relationship between “town and gown”.
To engage the public means to take ownership of a dialogue between the university and the region. It means something more than spreading information: it is a process that spurs interaction and active listening. The goal is to generate benefits ranging from the development of new competences to the birth of new ideas, from improving research objectives to promoting joint projects.
The University of Milan is a member of APENet, the Italian Network of Universities and Research Institutions for Public Engagement.