World Expo 2016

The city of Milan in Italy, is getting ready to showcase a very exciting event – the World Expo. So what is special about this event and why is so much being said about it? For the uninitiated, the World Expo is a universal exposition  that will bring together the ideas from all over the world under one roof.

It is an exciting and interactive platform for exchanging ideas with a central theme. The world expo 2016 dates have been set from 1st May to 31st Oct, 2016. Each aspect of the exposition, particularly the theme and location have been carefully selected by the International Exhibitions Bureau.

Name Expo Milano 2016 World Expo 2015 Logo
Date May 1, 2015 - October 31, 2016
Location Rho, Milan, Italy
  • Countries : 146
  • Organizations : 11
  • Business : 1
Motto Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life
Area 200 hectares (490 acres)
Visitors 20,000,000 (expected)
Category International Registered Exhibition

Selecting the Host Country and Theme

The official announcement of the event was done on 23rd Nov 2010. The expo participants will congregate in Milan the location of the Expo 2015.  The theme for the Expo 2015 is "Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”.The Exposition aims at finding solutions to the existing food crisis in many parts of the world. Expo participants will be constantly sharing ideas and solutions to address the gap between demand and supply of food, means of increasing productivity and innovative techniques in agriculture. Interestingly Milan will be hosting this grandiose event for the 2nd time, the 1st being the Milan International 1906.

Work on this event has been going on for a long time. In the initial stages the International Exhibitions Bureau had to choose the location and the theme for the event. Milan in Italy and Izmir in Turkey had placed bids to host the World Expo 2015. While Milan had suggested “ Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life” as its theme;  Izmir wanted to go with “ New routes to a better world/ Health for all”. The winning bid went to Milan with 86 votes against 65 for Izmir. Once the location and the theme of the World Expo were finalized, the preparations got underway.The World Expo 2015 dates were also decided at this juncture.

Finalizing the World Expo 2016 Dates and Master Plan

After finalizing the World Expo 2016 dates the planning was divided into 3 phases, viz.,the initial plan, the concept plan and the master plan. The initial plan dealt with the basic needs of the exposition and included deciding the area to be allotted to the pavilions, the structures which would be needed for the exhibits, areas for conferences and services like food courts at the location. In other words, all infrastructural needs for the smooth running of the exposition, including the needs of the expo participants were determined in the initial phase of planning.

The 2nd phase or concept planning was presented on Sept 8th 2009. Designed by four architects,  this phase of planning did away with the classical concept of avenues and pavilions at the location. Instead, they put forth the concept of transversely arranged pavilions. In line with the theme, each participant country would have an identical pavilion in which its typical food cycle from its production to its consumption would be recreated. The central area of the exhibition would be dedicated to showcasing the foods produced by each country. Areas catering to the needs of both official and non-official expo participants were also identified.

The final phase of planning was the master plan. It was delivered on the 30th of April, 2010 and dealt with the final stages of planning. At this stage the new concept of equal space for all participating countries was abandoned and space was allocated according to the resources of each country. The final structure and supporting infrastructure were finalized and included an amphitheatre and an auditorium. With the finalization of the master plan, the initial phase of the World Expo 2015 was put in place. By the end of April 2010, the world expo 2015 dates,location and theme had been finalized along with the planning for the infrastructural requirements of the expo participants.

Role of the Expo Participants at the Event

This global event aimsat uniting the different participant countries towards a common goal. The expo aims at meeting the increasing global demands for food. Expo participants have been classified into non-official and official participants. While official participants include all international organizations and countries who accepted Itay’s invitation to the Expo, non-official participants are those whose participation who have been authorized by the organizers. The expo wishes to lay emphasis on 3 major issues pertaining to food the central theme of the expo. The first being that food should be safe and healthy as well as sufficient for the people who have a right to the food. The second deals with the social, economical and environmental obligations of the food manufacturers or countries. The final issue being put forth is the preservation of food culture and its taste.

Beyond Geographical Boundaries and Location

The theme of the expo is self explanatory. Each aspect being considered is equally important given the role that food plays in the cultural, economic and social growth of any country. In fact the correlation between  food and economical stability is a universally acknowledged reality. Towards this end, the world expo 2015 in Milan aims at promoting a harmonious interchange of ideas for the greater good of the world and its citizens. It aims to do away with the geographical boundaries and locations that restrict the free flow of ideas and technology to make the world a better place where the availability of food is the right of each and every living person.

The central theme is further divided into 7 sub-themes. The sub-themes deal with different aspects of food viz., science, innovation, technology, education, cooperation, lifestyles and food culture. Each sub-theme lends itself to interpretation and offers immense scope for exploration and discussion. Food safety, supply chain and its management, biodiversity, dietary knowledge, improving lifestyles through food and the list just goes on.

Exchanging Ideas for the Greater Good

Expo Milano 2016 or World Expo 2016 looks at food from both the historical and the futuristic angles. Traditional cultural values, particularly those that are linked with food are given equal importance along with new technologies to increase the production and sustainability of food. The emphasis is on food cycle of each country and how it can be enhanced without destroying its underlying culture. Each of the expo participants would find that the exposition gives them a common platform to exchange their ideas and techniques, thus making a significant contribution to the world true to the theme of the exposition.